All the news that’s fit to nosh.
PSL Alert: You don’t have to hit Starbucks for your autumnal coffee fix. This year, respected local coffee shops like Press Coffee and Peixoto Coffee are getting in the spirit with seasonal offerings. Press’s first pumpkin spice latte will be served at all nine of its locations, including the outpost opening this Friday, October 8, in Downtown Phoenix. Peixoto’s buttered pumpkin latte comes heaped with marshmallow fluff from locally owned marshmallow café Toasted Mallow. You can also get a sweet potato pie latte with the same marshmallow treatment (vegan marshmallows can be substituted at no additional cost).
Minnesota Transplant: Minnesota-based Phillips Distilling Company is test-marketing an icy innovation in the Land of 10,000 Lakes and here in the Grand Canyon State. Cubist Freezer Vodka was tailormade for vodka sippers who prefer their tipples ice-cold. It comes in a bottle that uses thermochromic ink technology to turn the bottle label blue when it’s at the perfect temperature for serving. “Until now, no spirits maker could make the claim that they produce a vodka with a commitment to cold throughout the entire process to preserve the integrity, purity and taste of its vodka,” says senior brand manager Jeff Twomey. “Our fresh, bold and confident bottle design gives vodka drinkers a fun new way to get together and celebrate every day or milestone occasions with friends and family.” Pick some up for your next martini, greyhound or Moscow Mule.
Pipe Dreams: Valley favorite Organ Stop Pizza made national headlines last week when its resident organist, Brett Valliant, was named Organist of the Year by the American Theatre Organ Society. “Brett is an absolute crowd favorite because of his ability to play almost anything requested by our guests,” says OSP co-owner Jack Barz. “He is amazingly talented and equally as humble and kind. He never hesitates to sit with guests and tell them about our world-famous organ and what it’s like to play it daily. He frequently spends extra time explaining and demonstrating the remarkable instrument to anyone who expresses interest, and will sometimes give a complete demonstration and explanation of the organ during his performances.” Valliant began working with OSP as a guest artist in 2015 and joined the eatery full-time last year. The Wichita transplant has performed approximately 250 shows since his arrival in 2020. “Winning this award is an honor because of the very fine musicians who have received this distinction in years past,” Valliant says. “It’s humbling to be on the list of recipients for the ATOS award. Music is a universal language that helps communicate feelings and emotions where words leave off. Bringing the musical experience to so many people in one room every day is a pleasure for me, and seeing people leave the restaurant with a smile on their face makes my day. I am proud to be part of this esteemed community.”
New Restaurants on the Block: Itching to try something new? Add these to your to-dine list:
- Thai Chili 2 Go: The fast-casual favorite is set to open its 12th location on October 18 just off the Loop 101 at 90th Street in Scottsdale. To celebrate, it’s offering free entrées for the first 50 guests in the restaurant, which opens at 11 a.m. If you don’t make it that early, you can still score free dumplings with the purchase of any entrée (one per order).
- Buzzed Bull Creamery: This Cincinnati import will open at the Scottsdale Waterfront in mid-October. It offers a line of ice cream, desserts and coffee – some infused with booze. Liquid nitrogen brings it all together and creates a show while you wait for your treats.
- Firecreek Coffee Company: Coffee lovers who have spent any amount of time in Northern Arizona have sampled Firecreek’s tasty wares. Now it has set up shop in Arcadia with a location that opened this week. Pop in for a latte, house granola, daily quiche or artisanal toast.
- Someburros: This family-owned Mexican chain is opening its 12th location this Friday, October 8, in Mesa. The snazzy new outpost will have a drive-thru, slated to open in 2022. Opening festivities include live mariachi music, prizes and meet-and-greets with Someburros’ mascot, Nacho the donkey.
- Walk-On’s Sports Bistreaux: Gilbert residents will soon get a taste of Louisiana with the 2022 opening of this Cajun- and Creole-influenced eatery. It will feature 48 beers on tap and 75 TVs for sports fans to get their fix. A groundbreaking will be held on Thursday, October 7, at 11 a.m.
Sous Sous Sous Chef-o: The JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort recently announced the appointment of Matthew Mina as executive sous chef. The restaurant industry vet is an actual veteran – he served in the Marine Corps before building a stellar résumé that includes Auberge du Soleil and the Renaissance Downtown Phoenix. We’re excited to see Mina make his mark on the revered resort’s culinary offerings.
Eligible Menus: New season, new menus at some of your favorite Valley restaurants. To wit:
- Nonna Urban Eatery: Scottsdale’s chic Italian spot is offering a three-course prix fixe menu, with dishes ranging from roasted pumpkin and squash cream soup to tagliatelle Bolognese to carrot and five spice cake with orange marmalade. $48/person, plus tax and gratuity.
- Hearth ’61: Chef de cuisine Alfred Muro’s new offerings include green chile pork torta, kale and couscous salad with romesco and honey-fig cheesecake with candied almonds and cinnamon cream.
- HULA’S Modern Tiki: Sip Halloween-inspired cocktails all month at this tiki haven. The Pumpkintini (vanilla vodka, coffee liqueur, pumpkin purée, milk and bitters) looks to be a crowd-pleaser, but I’m most excited for the Black Magic (rum, lime, pineapple, charcoal simple syrup).
- Chompie’s: Load up on pumpkin bagels, pumpkin muffin loaf, Halloween sugar cookies and more at these Valleywide delis.
- Original Breakfast House: Autumnal treats at this breakfast and lunch favorite range from gluten-free pumpkin pancakes and a quinoa breakfast bowl to a turkey burger and gluten-free Turkey Gobbler sandwich. I’m most jazzed for the Bayou Shrimp and Grits.
- Z’Tejas: Visit this Southwestern staple’s two locations for fall highlights including papas rellenas, roasted pumpkin and apple salad, calabaza chicken enchiladas and pumpkin cheesecake.
- Wildflower: Head to this local bakery and café for the new spicy bacon and Cheddar breakfast sandwich, roasted mushroom Bolognese, cranberry-kale quinoa salad and more. Bonus: The cult favorite turkey-cranberry-walnut stuffing sandwich is back.
- Maple & Ash: Order The Featured Affair cocktail (tequila, St-Germain, dragonfruit, cucumer and basil, $22) throughout the month of October and the Chicago-based steakhouse will donate $1 from each sale to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, matched by Patrón.
$aving$: Watching the old budget? Who isn’t? Here are some sweet deals to help you $ave.
- Miracle Mile Deli: From November 1 through December 31, the Phoenix deli will give customers a bonus gift card for every $100 in gift cards they purchase. The amounts on the gift cards vary from $20-$100 and remain a mystery until the guest selects it.
- LDV Winery: Get your double relaxation on with yoga classes at this Scottsdale tasting room, which offers two sessions on Un[Wine]d Wednesdays. The 9 a.m. class features yin yoga and the 6 p.m. sesh focuses on hatha yoga. $40/person, plus tax; $75/two-class package; $150/four-class package; class includes one wine tasting per event.