Food & Drink

Local Foodie News

Desert DigestFood & DrinkAugust 3, 2021Local Foodie News

Photo courtesy Pronto   All the news that’s fit to nosh.  Taco the Town: Love the customizable menu, fast service and efficiency of Chipotle, but long to support a local restaurant over a chain? East Valley institution Serrano’s Mexican Restaurants has a new fast-casual concept for you. Pronto will open in Serrano’s Tempe location (6440 S. Rural Rd.) this fall. “We’ve learned a lot over the past two years, and we know that fast-casual concepts have experienced significant recent growth,” says CEO Ric Serrano. “Our Pronto concept will offer...
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All the news that’s fit to nosh.   Suns Mania: The Valley is rallying, indeed – with food and drink specials inspired by the Phoenix Suns’ arrival in the NBA Finals. Grab these deals while they last:  PHX Beer Co. released a limited-edition craft brew called Shazaaam! West Coast IPA, in honor of beloved Phoenix Suns announcer Al McCoy’s famed catchphrase. Notes of mango and papaya energize this beer, which is available as a four-pack or on draft.  Humble Pie and Humble Bistro are offering a “baller deal”...

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Enjoy a cocktail, craft beer or chef-curated snack above it all at these sky-high bars and restaurants. Lustre Rooftop Bar Hotel Palomar’s chic poolside bar serves up local beers, craft cocktails and light bites with a side of sweeping city views. Hang out for happy hour on weekdays from 4 to 6 p.m. or stop by on Saturdays from 8 p.m. to midnight for music from local DJs. 2 E. Jefferson St., Phoenix, 602-258-0231, lustrerooftopbar.com Floor...

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Now that most restaurants and bars are back in full swing, many have transitioned to summer menus. The Americano in north Scottsdale is no exception, according to Nicholas Padua, the restaurant’s wine and beverage director. To that end, The Americano has rolled out some new summery cocktails, including the “Pop Rock & Drop It,” made with Franciacorta (Italian sparkling wine), Amaretto and strawberry essence garnished with a Pop Rock-studded strawberry. For those not familiar with...

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Photo by Nikki Buchanan   I’m not sure when it happened exactly, but somewhere along the line, “namaste,” considered nothing more than a respectful greeting of “hello” in India, evolved into something much more profound here in the States. Routinely repeated in yoga classes across the land, it’s come to represent spirituality and deep reservoirs of calmness and peace . . . and then SNL and social media got ahold of it. Here’s a typical...

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Campo Italian Bistro & Bar | Photo courtesy Studio Alcott Openings 810 Billiards & Bowling 810 Billiards & Bowling offers a full complement of entertainment as well as American pub grub and specialty cocktails, beer and wine. 3455 W. Frye Rd, Chandler, 480-576-2449, 810bowling.com Barro’s Pizza This popular Valley pizza restaurant has opened a new location at S. Idaho Road and Old West Highway in Apache Junction. 480-982-8900, barrospizza.com Buono’s Pizza Look for New York-style...

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Avocado and tomato bruschetta | Photo by Leah LeMoine   THE SCENE My love for The Hermosa Inn and its stunning on-site restaurant, LON’s, is no secret. I love it so much I broke my pandemic “dining-out” fast there in April, when my partner and I celebrated our anniversary on its perfect patio. I’ve rhapsodized about it in print and in this very happy hour blog, where I wrote about LON’s Last Drop’s happy hour two years ago.  Ah, but the times, they are a changin’ – and so is the happy hour...

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The Edgemont’s secret grilled cheese | Photo by Dylan Chryst Watkiss   Liven up the classic grilled cheese by trying a fancy sammie from these local dining legends. Prosciutto & Brie Panini from Postino This meaty take on the grilled cheese includes prosciutto di parma, brie, fig jam, arugula, balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Seven Valley locations, postinowinecafe.com Grilled Cheese from The Main Ingredient Rather than having one cheese, The Main Ingredient’s three cheese grilled...

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Ni Hao Tea | Photo by Tiffany Acosta    There are many reasons why you should travel south to Tucson – we outlined many of them in our Southwest Escapes feature last month. But taking a tour of the city’s burgeoning foodie scene is at the top. Check out these three must-try local restaurants. Grab a Slice at Caffé Torino When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie… you go to Caffé...

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All the news that’s fit to nosh.  Coffee Boom: Two new coffee shops are slated to open by mid-July in Downtown Phoenix. Kähvi Coffee + Café is the latest concept from serial restaurateur Julian Wright (Pedal Haus Brewery, Luckys Indoor Outdoor). The coffee bar and café is inspired by the coffeeshops of Tulum and Scandinavia and will also offer beer, wine, kombucha, sandwiches, salads and pastries from Hope’s Artisan Bakery. Kähvi is set to open on July 12 in the monOrchid building in the Roosevelt Row Arts District. Meanwhile, commercial...

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Photo by Debby Wolvos   I love Flagstaff. Love the weather, love NAU, love the funky stores and, most of all, love the growing food scene. Obviously, executive chef/partner Rochelle Daniel of Fat Ox in Scottsdale sees the potential there, too. She’s opening a Modern American restaurant called Atria in downtown Flag late this summer (August, if we’re lucky), moving into the intimate, airy space that most recently housed La Vetta Ristorante Italiano. Daniel says...

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El Berraco | Photo by Tiffany Acosta    Taking a trip down to Tucson? Take a tour of the city’s flourishing foodie scene while you’re in town. After all, UNESCO designated The Old Pueblo as a distinguished City of Gastronomy in 2016. Grab a Cuppa at Cup Café Ready to get out there and embrace the world again? Start with brunch or dinner at Cup Café, located in the century-old Hotel Congress. Helmed by executive...

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I think it’s safe to say that desert dwellers are always looking for ways to cool off, especially this week. With temperatures hovering around 115 degrees, we thought it might be a good time to share a refreshing cocktail from Culinary Dropout. The crowning touch, Ron Zacapa 23 rum from Guatemala, sends this drink into nirvana territory. Enjoy this rum cocktail poolside, or visit Culinary Dropout and sip along with an order of beer-battered fish...

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Photo courtesy Studio Alcott   For fans of creative cocktails with sweeping Valley views, the highly anticipated Don Woods’ Say When rooftop lounge is finally open in Uptown Phoenix. Cocktailian Ross Simon (of Bitter & Twisted and Little Rituals fame) heads up the beverage program at this vibrant retro rooftop bar. If you live in the Uptown area, you have probably driven by the enticing dark neon sign for more than a year, anticipating its...

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Got a dream of opening your own restaurant? Start with a pop-up. That’s the savvy direction budding restaurateurs are taking these days, given that pop-ups offer an inexpensive way to test locations, menu items and concepts, generate buzz, build an audience, and gain credibility. Cassie Shortino is following that very path, having recently left her position as the executive chef at Tratto to start Shorty’s Charpit, a pop-up she will hold once or twice a...

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When Tony Andiario left Tratto four-ish years ago, I worried that the place would not be the same without him. Then Cassie Shortino, who had been working for Cullen Campbell at Crudo before it closed, stepped in and filled those shoes like a boss. I remember arguing back then with a food-loving pal of mine about the virtues of Andiario’s elegant chicken liver mousse versus Shortino’s far more rustic seared chicken livers with strawberry jam...

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