RUBEE TUESDAY: May 1-9: Bitter and Twisted, Mora, Casa Anejo, Proof and Onyx at the Four Seasons, Artizen at The Camby, Kentucky Derby Brunch at Bourbon Steak, North, and CRUjiente Tacos
A semi-regular feature, Rubee Tuesday is a recap of my week's adventures in dining and drinking in the Phoenix area.
On Monday, May 1st, I attended a special media preview of Bitter and Twisted Cocktail Parlour's fourth annual Book o' Cocktails along with a sampling of some of Chef Bob Tam's delicious new dishes. Loved it! You can read my photo recap by clicking the picture below.
Afterwards, our friend Kirti joined us for a nightap at Mora Italian, where we shared the foie gras and chicken liver pate with cippolini agro dolce. And a special treat was chatting with one of the valley's best chefs - chef de cuisine Matt Taylor.
On Tuesday, May 2nd, I joined fellow media at Casa Añejo Tacos and Tequila, the newest addition to The Colony. It's a winning trifecta, with a beautiful space designed by HGTV and DIY Network's Kitchen Crashers star Alison Victoria, Riley Jones in charge of cocktails, and Chef Joe Absolor helming the kitchen. Look for a full recap later this month.
On Thursday, May 4th, I was on assignment for Phoenix Home and Garden at the Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale. Pick up the July issue for a feature on Executive Chef Chuck Kazmer and his special summer recipes. I was also treated to a dish on Talavera's "Spring in France" tasting menu running through May 17. The rabbit paté with caper berries and pistachios, preserved Meyer lemon aioli, and fava beanss is amazing!
Afterwards, I joined my fellow food writer friend Lauren Topor for Proof's Thursday-only Tiki Pop-Up.
We sipped our way through tropical tiki drinks such as the Flaming Zombie Bite (my favorite - with Plantation overproof rum, gin, pineapple, orange, and orgeat), Pimm's Plunder (Pimm's, Wild Tonic's Tropical Turmeric kombucha, ginger beer, raspberry, lime, and cucumber) and Piña Luau (ixa reposado tequila, amaro, demerara simple syrup, pineapple, lime). Chef Dell also shared his delicious housemade kombucha - thank you Dell!
Don't miss out on Chef Del's rotating selection of Ono Grindz such as this Hawaaian Fried Rice with pineapple, U-5 shrimp and hoisin-glazed scallops, and the bacon bao with turmeric preserved cabbage, chicharrones, charred shallot, and garlic blossoms. Chef Dell cures the bacon for 8 days and then smokes it over black walnut. For more information about this weekly event, click this link.
And we couldn't leave without enjoying the sunset on the picturesque patio of Onyx.
On Friday, May 5th, we received a media invitation to explore Chef Dushyant Singh's new dshes at a personal favorite - Artizen at The Camby. Chef not only surprised us with a custom tasting menu but WOW this is one of my best meals of 2017. I was already a huge fan, but now I'm an even bigger one. These are just a few of the fantastic highlights. Some are currently on the menu, and some are still being finalized. Look for a detailed feature later this month.
Saturday was the Kentucky Derby. This was my first time joining the Kentucky Derby Brunch at Bourbon Steak at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, but not my last! Festivities included Bulleit mint juleps, live blues music, and a Southern brunch featuring pickled shrimp, filet mignon with Henry Bain sauce, hush puppies and fried oysters, Kentucky burgoo, shrimp and grits, hot browns, fried chicken, Derby pie, red velvet cupcakes, and more. My friend Kirti and I also left as winners! Each guest drew a horse name as they entered and since Always Dreaming won, so did we - a free overnight stay at this gorgeous resort.
On Monday, May 8th, I joined fellow travel writers and local tourism representatives to kick off National Travel and Tourism Week. We were hosted by Visit Phoenix at North Italia in Arcadia and feasted on new favorites like zucca chips, Seasonal Vegetable salad, chicken pesto with gigli pasta, and tiramisu.
Across the street is one of my favorites, CRUjiente Tacos. Since they had just launched their new brew collaboration with Pedal Haus Brewery, I had to stop in after lunch, especially as they were promoting a one-day-only taco pairing. Crujiente's award-winning Executive Chef Richard Hinojosa and co-owner Jason Morris worked with Julian Wright and Derek “Doc” Osborne of Pedal Haus to create a blood orange Gose-style beer. I loved it! But get it while you can as it is very limited. Chef paired it with an incredible roasted pork belly taco with orange-habanero glaze, tomatoes, and cilantro mojo.
For past Rubee Tuesday recaps, visit this link. Stay tuned next week as I visit Il Capo Pizzeria, attend a private culinary film movie screening, support my friend Kirti at an LLS fundraising cocktail dinner at Hyatt Gainey Ranch (she's been nominated for Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Woman of the Year), explore the new cocktail menu at House Brasserie...and film a segment as a guest on Good Morning Arizona!