Write On Rubee

An Arizona-based food, beverage and travel writer since 2008,  I launched this website in 2015 to document my culinary adventures, beverage escapades, gardening endeavors, and travel in the Phoenix area and beyond.  Also find a comprehensive calendar of Phoenix-area food and drink-related events on my Events page.

Filtering by Tag: Crudo

RUBEE TUESDAY: August 16-21: Second Story Liquor Bar, Crudo, Char, Fabio on Fire, Hearth '61, AZRW Fall Preview

A semi-weekly feature, Rubee Tuesday is a recap of my week's adventures in dining and drinking in the Phoenix area.

The Local at Second Story Liquor Bar

The Local at Second Story Liquor Bar

Wednesday, August 16: I'm working on my next assignment for Experience Scottsdale and spent the afternoon with Executive Chef Jordano Sessions of Second Story Liquor Bar. This talented young chef has a background in botany nutrition and sustainable agriculture, and I can't wait to share his story and food philosophy.

Jordano Sessions

SSLB will be rolling out a new menu of global small plates and I had a sneak peek at some of the delicious dishes, such as his carrot and turmeric arancini with gochujang aioli and tomato jam. Tip: Pair it with Andrew's "Local Roots" cocktail with turmeric-infused gin, chamomile grappa, lemon, and watermelon syrup.  

Falafel at Second Story Liquor Bar

Afterwards, we joined our friends Margo and Norman at Crudo. A Wednesday night special encourages you to gather with your friends and family to share a refillable Polenta Board. Dinner includes a market salad, platter of polenta (local Hayden Mills) topped with a weekly sugo, garnishes, and a bottle of wine for four people.  All this at only $20 per person. We feasted on polenta topped with pork belly, brisket, and shishito peppers, and rounded out our dinner with excellent cocktails such as Brenon's "Just a Snip" pictured below and small plates like a wonderful yellowtail collar

Polenta board Crudo

Thursday, August 17:  I attended a special media sampling of new fall dishes at Char Kitchen + Bar.  More photos and details can be found by clicking the photo of their Mediterranean Chef's Board below.

Friday, August 18:  My friend chef Fabio Ceschetti and his wife have long had a dream of opening their own restaurant, and it has come true with the opening of Fabio on Fire! Although Fabio just opened in June, he's already received great reviews (such as this one) and a busy restaurant every night. In fact, plans are already in the works to add a 30-seat patio. I finally had a chance to visit with my parents and wow, we loved it! And the best part? It's on my side of the valley in Peoria. You'll find Italian pastries, pizzas, pastas, and salads, and Fabio also bakes his own bread and makes gelato.  Look for a future feature, but for now, here's a glimpse of some of the fantastic dishes we enjoyed.

Farro salad with shrimp, golden raisins, roasted pinenuts, arugula and shaved Parmesan cheese

Farro salad with shrimp, golden raisins, roasted pinenuts, arugula and shaved Parmesan cheese

Sunday, August 20.  I was invited for the third installment of the monthly Sunday Supper series at Hearth '61, the signature restaurant at Mountain Shadows Resort. Special guest Jason Raducha of Noble Bread joined Executive Chef Charles Wiley for a four-course wine dinner ($74 per person). It was my first time at Sunday Supper, but not my last! The next one is scheduled for September 17.  Look for a detailed recap of my experience to post next week. 

Mountain Shadows lobby view

Monday, August 21: Arizona Restaurant Week kicks off next month and I joined fellow media for a progressive dine-around to preview the menus at The Herb Box in DC Ranch, Market Street Kitchen, and Fleming's Steakhouse. Here are some of the great choices you can expect.

We started with appetizers at The Herb Box.  

Trout beignets

Trout beignets

Next was Market Street Kitchen for the main course

Rotisserie fried chicken with cheddar mashed potatoes and cream gravy

Rotisserie fried chicken with cheddar mashed potatoes and cream gravy

Our last stop was Fleming's for decadent desserts

We ended our stroll around DC Ranch back at Market Street Kitchen for a Garrit Guthrie nightcap.  

Garrit Guthrie Cocktail Market Street Kitchen

To browse past Rubee Tuesday recaps, visit this link. 

RUBEE TUESDAY, JULY 19-25: Market Street Kitchen, Barrio Cafe Gran Reserva, Crudo and Dillon's KC BBQ

A recently-launched feature, Rubee Tuesday is a recap of my week's adventures in dining and drinking in and around Phoenix.  

Market Street Kitchen: Piggy Wings, lomi lomi, and big eye poke

Wednesday, July 20th. I've been a long-time fan of Market Street Kitchen (I chose to spotlight it in a 2014 issue of AZ Wine Lifestyle), but it had been a while since I've visited this North Scottsdale gem.  Well, now I have an even bigger excuse to get here more regularly:  Garrit's fantastic cocktails and Secret Treasure Island Tiki Menu, and Chef Hunn's dishes, especially those drawing on his Hawaiian roots such as teriyaki "piggy wings", sockeye salmon lomi lomi, and big eye tuna poke with mango and shiso leaves.  Follow this link for a detailed recap. 

Thursday, July 21st. It was with great anticipation that Phoenix fans awaited James Beard Award-nominated chef Silvana Salicido Esparza's new restaurant - Barrio Gran Cafe Reserva. I had made reservations the first day they were accepted, but then had to cancel, so I was really looking forward to a wonderful dinner catching up with our friend Kathy.  I loved everything about it, including its intimate size (I think it seats about 25 people) and the beautiful art.

Thanks to Miranda, we had great service and suggestions, and I love the 100% Mexican wine list and cocktails using bacanora and sotol. 

The wonderful food really speaks to Chef's philosophy and the tasting menu is different than anything she has done at her previous restaurants. It captures the true spirit of Mexico in a sophisticated yet unassuming way. You can see a lot of heart and dreams went into this little jewel.  

Kathy and I chose the tasting menu, while my husband opted for a la carte items of tableside guacamole and mole du jour. 

Saturday, July 25. After celebrating the 6th anniversary of Phoenix Bites (congratulations Taryn!) we stopped on the way home at Crudo. I've been a fan since their original location (I wrote this in 2010 after a visit with current food critic Dom of the AZ Republic), and since then it's gone on to win awards and accolades for both food and cocktails. Another amazing dinner with our friends Margo and Norman just made us realize how overdue we were for a visit.  They also have one of the best deals in town as dinner can be coursed with your own choices from the menu: 3 for $35, 4 for $45, 5 for $55.  The four of us feasted on three courses each and some of our dishes at another perfect night at Crudo included:

Sunday, July 24. Doing errrands in our NW Valley neighborhood, we stopped at a favorite BBQ spot for a quick supper at Dillon's KC BBQ: Award-winning onion rings, smoked chicken taquitos, and the brisket platter with a side of BBQ beans and coleslaw

Check back next week as my plans include visits to Citizen Public House, a bar competition at Wasted Grain, Deseo at the Westin Kierland, Craft 64, The Mission, Eddie's House, and Bitter and Twisted.

To browse past Rubee Tuesday recaps, click this link