Local Foodie News

Leah LeMoineMay 10, 2022
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Photo courtesy Tía Carmen

All the news that’s fit to nosh.  

Felicidades: Tía Carmen is now open! The hotly anticipated restaurant from Top Chef alum Angelo Sosa made its debut early this month at JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort & Spa. The contemporary Southwestern eatery boasts globally inflected Southwestern/Mexican dishes including tuna crudo with chilled corn-coconut broth; Southwestern-style Wagyu tri-tip kebabs; lamb ragù with mesquite noodles; and the restaurant’s signature dish, chicken guisado, a luscious chicken stew Sosa’s aunt, the property’s namesake, was famous for. (I tried it at the media preview and it’s the best thing I’ve eaten in a restaurant in months.) Make a reservation here. 

Market on the Run: After many years at Central Avenue and McKinley Street, the Downtown Phoenix Farmers Market moved to a new home at 720 N. Fifth St. (outside Phoenix Bioscience Core) this past weekend. The relocation will allow the beloved market to expand its existing roster of more than 80 farmers and vendors and bring in more live entertainment. 

Booze News: From interactive classes to snazzy awards, the local beer, wine and spirits scenes are popping this week.

  • Spirited Awards: The Tales of the Cocktail Foundation recently announced its regional honorees for the Spirited Awards, and a slew of Valley bars were honored. Century Grand, Bitter & Twisted Cocktail Parlour, Little Rituals, Across the Pond and Highball were named top 10 honorees for Best U.S. Cocktail Bar in the West. The foundation will honor recipients during the in-person awards ceremony/conference Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans from July 25-29.
  • SanTan Spirits: The Chandler distillery (an outgrowth of SanTan Brewing Company) won six medals in the prestigious 2022 San Francisco World Spirits Competition: a gold medal for its Sacred Stave American Single Malt; silver medals for its Jacob Waltz Bottle in Bond Bourbon, SweetPeach Bourbon and CaraMellow Salted Caramel Whiskey; and silver medals in the ready-to-drink category of products, one for SunSplash White Peach Vodka Soda and one for GingerPunk Whiskey Mule.
     
  • Becky Personality Juice: This Scottsdale spiked seltzer company also won at the San Francisco competition, taking home a silver medal for its four flavors.
     
  • LDV Winery: The Scottsdale tasting room is bringing back its Le Nez du Vin (aromatherapy for wine lovers) class this summer. During each experience, guests indulge in wine tastings, noshes, pairings and “an aroma-based exercise” to help oenophiles identify the scents and tasting notes in various wines. Le Nez du Vin takes place Wednesdays from 3-5 p.m. and Sundays from 4-6 p.m. $65/person plus tax and gratuity, with wine tasting included. Minimum group size is four people, groups larger than 20 must be approved. To register, call 480-664-4822 or email info@ldvwinery.com. 

Extreme Couponers: Hot on the heels of eegee’s expansion into the Valley last year, the Tucson-based sub shop is offering its famed Coupon Card for the first time in the Phoenix metro. Now through June 30, receive a Coupon Card with a $12 donation benefiting Junior Achievement of Arizona, Integrative Touch and El Rio Health Center Foundation. The card offers one coupon for 50 percent off an order each month for one year, as well as discounts on combo meals throughout the year – up to a $60 value in eegees, ranch fries and sandwiches. 

Eligible Menus: New month, new menus at Valley restaurants. To wit:

  • SkyTop: ADERO Scottsdale’s outdoor cocktail lounge celebrates reopening with new high-top seating, sofas and an enclosed stargazing area. On the food side, look for tempura shishito peppers, pulpitos (octopus) flatbread and elote. On the drinks side, La Luna sounds tempting: Casamigos Blanco and blood orange.
     
  • PHX Beer Co.: New brunch menu at the Scottsdale location of this brewpub! Visit on weekends for the corned beef hash skillet, chorizo skillet, breakfast hash skillet, avocado toast, breakfast burrito, French toast platter or the All In: two eggs, two bacon strips, two sausage patties, breakfast potatoes and two slices of sourdough toast.
  • Z’Tejas: Tempting new dishes at this Valley chain include crab artichoke dip, berry steak salad, diablo eggs (a spicier spin on deviled eggs), pork chop with agave-pineapple sauce, seared mahi-mahi, Caribbean chicken, mango-coconut cheesecake parfait and a coconut cookie with blood orange sorbet.
     
  • Eat Up Drive In: Pop by this Arcadia spot for frozen lemonade made with freshly squeezed lemons. It’s available in classic and strawberry iterations.
     
  • North Italia: New treats at this modern Italian eatery include a Caprese sandwich, hanger steak tagliata, sweet corn and fontina polenta, and Bomba Style pizza, accompanied by a dip of straciatella cheese, herbs, olive oil and Calabrian chiles. New cocktails include the Tucano Punch (rum, aperitivo, pineapple, lime) and the brunch special Vespa (vodka, aperitivo, peach limoncello and sparkling rosé).
     
  • ZuZu: This month’s Show Stopper Shake is inspired by Star Wars, with a blue raspberry milkshake base topped with a chocolate Millennium Falcon and X-wing Starfighter, watermelon and blue raspberry lightsaber sugar sticks, Darth Vader black watermelon panna cotta, sugar cookie, white chocolate milk crumb, whipped cream, R2-D2 blue raspberry panna cotta and “galaxy sprinkles.” One dollar from each $20 shake sold will go to Make-A-Wish Arizona. 

New Restaurants on the Block:

  • Salad and Go: The Valley’s ever-expanding salad chain opened yet another location last week, at Estrella Parkway and Van Buren Street in Goodyear.

$aving$: Watching the old budget? Who isn’t? Here are some sweet deals to help you $ave.

  • Picazzo’s Healthy Italian Kitchen: Celebrate National Wine Day on May 25 with half off all bottles of wine. Available at all Valley locations.
  • Queen Creek Olive Mill: Save with an olive oil bundle while rooting on the Phoenix Suns with the Rally the Valley pairing: Arizona Valencia Orange Olive Oil and Prickly Pear Balsamic Reduction for $33. Purchase in-store or online.
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