You’ve worked hard the last few months. When was the last time you were really able to enjoy yourself? Seeing how Labor Day is almost upon us, you probably need an idea for how to spend the three-day weekend. The Hotel Valley Ho is always your friend in that regard. How does poolside entertainment, brunch and the Bloody Mary Bar at ZuZu, and a Sunday spa package, sound? You can enjoy the whole weekend at the hotel in the Signature Guest Room for $349. The weekend will be a blast with DJ Peabody spinning by the pool, cabana rentals, and 90 minute spa treatments that include wine/champagne.
Looking for a classy way to celebrate Independence Day in style and in air conditioning? Why not at the top of a Valley resort, in front of floor-to-ceiling windows where you can view firework shows stretching from Phoenix to Scottsdale?
The Phoenician’s J&G Steakhouse invites you to share this holiday in their restaurant’s open seating while enjoying specialty cocktails, a full a la carte menu or their Fourth of July-themed prix fixe menu Wednesday.
The July 4th Prix Fixe Menu includes three courses. Choose between local watermelon gazpacho, jumbo shrimp cocktail or heirloom Tomatoes with fresh raspberry vinegar and goat cheese for the first course. Next up is a grilled tuna burger, french fries, miso mayonnaise and yuzu pickles; barbecue sirloin tip with creamy local corn; or a grilled pork chop, cherry mustard and sautéed mustard greens. The third course includes your choice of strawberry charlotte sundae, popping cherry pie or warm chocolate nougat tart with praline ice cream.
Festive 4th of July cocktails are available for $12 and include Red: Sour Cherry Caipirinha (Pirrasunga 21 Cachaca, cherry, lime), White: Vanilla Cream Soda (Svedka Vanilla Vodka, caramelized Sugar and club soda) and Blue: Blueberry Lemonade (Ketel One Citroen Vodka, lemon, blueberries and Sprite).
The July 4th Prix Fixe Menu is $45, is available Tuesday and Wednesday from 5 to 10 p.m.
Turns out, you don’t need to leave the city for a weekend escape, you just need to head over to Talking Stick Resort and take part in their summer pool party series, Release, every Saturday and Sunday from 11-6 all summer long. Enjoy drink specials courtesy of Bud Light Lime, promotional giveaways, cabana rentals and poolside performances from 1-5 pm by the region’s best DJs from Las Vegas, Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco.
You can snag poolside seats for all the action by renting a cabana. Or you can really go all out and invite your friends to join you in a VIP cabana to relax with a flat screen tv, seating for six and bottled water to keep yourself hydrated and ready to party all day long. To reserve your cabana call 480.850.4350.
Time to break out the sunscreen and hit the (pool) deck at TSR for a party worthy of your weekend. See you there
In 2011, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer declared Social Media Day an official holiday. This year ABC15 has teamed up with Pink Media, Mashable and Meetup to host this year’s celebration and observance of Social Media Day Phoenix.
Join 40 local businesses who use social media and networking on a daily basis from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m this Friday at the Ritz-Carlton. The event, themed “Connect. Engage. Support Local.,” will include workshops, games and a social media-inspired fashion show.
The Venue of Scottsdale has announced plans to open a new “back East pizza and beef joint” in the space next door.
Keep It Simple Stupid (K.I.S.S.), a fast-casual concept eatery boasting simple ingredients and classic big city food, is expected to open by late July.
Under the command of chef Anthony Crocenzi, a native of Chicago, the restaurant will feature Chicago and New York style pizzas (whole or by the slice), Italian beef, Italian sausage and New York Italian grinder sandwiches, Chicago dogs and antipasto salads.
Also projected to open in the two-story space adjacent to the venue is V2 Lounge (pronounced “V squared”). Stay tuned for details or visit the K.I.S.S. Facebook page for more information.
What’s delicious, nutritious and can win you a prize and boost your culinary ego all at the same time? Give up? Entering your best or favorite healthy main dish, side dish or dessert in Fit City Scottsdale’s “Battle of the Healthy Recipe” contest.
If you love to eat and have a knack for turning the healthiest ingredients into the most savory entrees, here is your chance to show what you’ve got (and try other dishes).
To enter, submit your recipe for a relatively healthy dish that features a whole grain and bring said dish to the Osborn Medical Center on June 20 before 5:00 p.m. Participants will sample all dishes and cast their votes. Prizes will be awarded to winners in main dish, side dish and dessert categories.
Register here (required for participation) and email your recipe to [email protected] prior to the event. This event is free and all recipes will be shared after the event. For more information, call HealthConnect at (480) 882-4636 or click here.
With the NBA Finals underway, Diamondbacks’ season in full swing and the Stanley Cup just wrapping up (great run, Coyotes) it is no surprise that we’re seeing an influx of beer news, beer consumption and beer recommendations. In order to remain relevant and keep our buzz going, here’s a redux of this week’s happenings in our favorite food blogs:
Let’s hope by now you’ve at least decided on a Father’s Day gift for dad (even if you haven’t crossed it off the shopping list yet), but for those of you procrastinators out there here are six brilliant beer suggestions based on your dad’s personality, thanks to Chow Bella.
If you’ve had your gifts for pop bought and wrapped for weeks now (and we’re boring you at this point), we turn to Mouth By Southwest for five fruit-flavored Arizona beer profiles. Don’t simply judge a beer by it’s
cover fruit, be sure to try some of this frosty-cold, sweet summery bliss.
In other beer news, Mouth By Southwest is reporting that the opening of World of Beer in Tempe has been pushed back from July 2 to July 23. Construction permitting, you should be able to watch your favorite teams compete at the London 2012 Summer Olympics while sipping an international brew (since it is all about sports after all).
Hot summer evenings mix well with dinner out, shopping and, of course, music (not to mention cocktails). So, when the unforgiving sun begins to set and talk of dinner ensues, remember this season provides a unique opportunity to catch live music in a variety of unique venues. Behold the local concert series list:
Civic Space Park: Enjoy yoga and live music for free every Thursday through August. Yoga for all ages takes place from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. and live music from 7:30 to 9 p.m. June dates feature reggae, jazz and R&B.
Desert Ridge Marketplace: Artists perform Fridays and Saturdays from 7 to 10 p.m. on the District Stage or from 7 to 9 p.m. at the AMC Fountain. With genres ranging from Irish celtic to alternative (and instruments including the accordion and keyboard) the variety here will suit even the most eclectic tastes.
Tempe Marketplace: Artists perform Fridays and Saturdays from 7 to 10 p.m. on the District Stage or from 7 to 9 p.m. at the B&N Fountain. Whether it’s jazz, funk or acoustic guitar you’re after, you will find it here (and possibly discover a new favorite). »READ MORE
If the charbroiled cheeseburger is as classically American as it gets, the veggie burger would be the nation’s unsung hero. The reality of dining out is that every vegetarian hopes to find a fresh and savory meat-free option on any menu they might encounter, but that is
not always almost never the case. The veggie burger may not always be the first choice, but is guaranteed to come through for you when searching for sustenance in say, an airport, in a drive-thru or at a sporting event. But why should we penalize this hero with a “last resort” stigma because of our lack of options or poor planning? This week is about revisiting the flavors and varieties that make the veggie burger unique and timeless. Here are five exceptional places to find the most worthy of unsung heros:
Should you find yourself in a steakhouse, let’s hope it’s Houston’s. Their House-Made veggie burger has come to the rescue of so many vegetarian diners. Don’t be deceived by the Monterey Jack cheese, onions, pickles, lettuce or tomato, the magic is in the veggie patty itself. Which is why the “secret” recipe has created quite a buzz over the internet. To say it’s worth duplicating is putting it mildly. »READ MORE
In case you’ve missed the skinny thus far, June has been declared Arizona Dairy Month courtesy of the state’s Dairy Council (how fitting) and valley chefs are milking it for all it’s worth. With that in mind, here’s a redux of this week’s happenings in our favorite food blogs:
The “Moo-ving Milkshake Shop” is a cross between the modern delight of a food truck and the nostalgia of an ice cream parlor in years gone by. Five local gourmet chefs will showcase their own take on milkshake concepts at a different valley restaurant each week of June. With flavors like “Schnepf Farms Peach Cobbler” or “Mexican chocolate with oaxacan chile” you will not want to miss out on this udderly unique summer tour. For a list of chefs and participating locations, click here.
Another, albeit quirkier, way to pay homage to Arizona’s dairy industry is a cheesemaking class at The Fossil Creek Creamery in Strawberry, Ariz. This edible adventure made Chow Bella’s “Ten Favorite Arizona Summer Festivals and Adventures” list. Classes fill up fast, call (928) 476-5178 for reservations.
Pen and Fork has also boarded the milkshake moovement and devised a do-it-yourself milkshake in honor of the state’s beloved bovine. So, why not support our local dairy farms by grabbing some yogurt, ice cream or milk (and some Kahlúa or Bailey’s, no judgement) for a completely customizable summer treat. Happy Blending.
Mighty Mud Mania 2012 is scheduled for Saturday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Chaparral Park, 5401 N. Hayden Road in Scottsdale. While there is no doubt the popularity of quirky runs and muddy obstacle course experiences are on the rise, this year marks the 37th anniversary of this event and the first time adults have been eligible to participate.
According to the City of Scottsdale, “Mighty Mud Mania” began in 1976 as the ‘Shout It Out Decathlon,’ a promotional gimmick for Johnson’s Wax “Shout” Spray pre-wash. The promotion ended, but the event has become a favorite Scottsdale tradition.
From 8 a.m. to noon, there is no cost for children 17 and under with designated muddy play areas for children under 7. The obstacle course is open to adults 18 and over from noon to 2 p.m. for a $10 registration fee. Register here. Proceeds from the event will benefit the City of Scottsdale’s Afterschool Programs.
What To Bring: Permission slips (they are required for all children) lace-up or Velcro shoes (sandals and flip-flops are not allowed) and a non-perishable food item for donation to the Vista del Camino food bank.
For more information, click here and take on “mud slinging” in an election year like you have never seen it before.
Father’s day is the perfect opportunity to spoil the dads in your life, this can also include bringing them up to speed with the latest men’s fashion trends and electronics, facilitating their love for sports and leisure or simply surprising them with their favorite nonsensical or old school gifts.
Forget the electric razor gift idea this Father’s Day and get him some much deserved pampering mixed with a little old school class. V’s Barbershop offers gift cards, discounts on father and son haircuts, shoe shines, massages and so much more.
If you’re shopping for a man who couldn’t bear the thought of life without his iphone, a worthy investment is the Lifeproof iphone/ipad case that is rapidly gaining attention for its water, dirt, snow and shock proof capabilities. Enough said. »READ MORE
Truth be told, most carnivores don’t understand vegetarian cuisine and are often afraid they’ll be forced to eat a flavorless, textureless excuse for a _________ (fill in the blank). All while pretending they’re enjoying it.
In a feeble attempt to dispel such myths, we present the first installment of Mock Meat Monday: a classy look at the local vegetarian scene. Hopefully the next time you have guests in town from Portland or you end up on a blind date with a “veggie” you will call up one of these tasty suggestions. Win-win.
Where else would a respectable vegetarian voyage begin, than from the mecca, the almighty, the godfather: Green. Self-described as “New American Vegetarian,” Green is actually 100 percent vegan and features a gluten-free menu as well. And face it, it’s just plain trendy.
The menu includes traditional comfort food dishes made slightly different than one might be accustomed to, but the flavors and ingredients do not disappoint. With fresh salads and fruit, sandwiches, noodle and rice bowls, pizza (and we’d be remiss if I didn’t recommend the appetizers) supplemented with vegan cheeses and “mock meats” there truly is something for everyone.
The last thing you’ll want to do is to forget to save room for dessert. Green’s infamous Tsoynami’s are nothing short of a vegan blizzard. Not to mention the pastries, espresso and other treats that will remind you how glorious the experience of trying new things can be.
For locations, menu and hours, click here.
I take any chance I get to skip town. Exploring new destinations or finding fresh angles on longtime favorite travel spots is a major thrill. But, sometimes it’s fun to vacation in your hometown. When you live in the Valley of the Sun, this opportunity presents itself on a regular basis.
Case in point: The Saguaro in Scottsdale. The first hotel from Joie de Vivre (Ace Hotels) outside of California, The Saguaro is a welcome gem on the local hotel scene.
When I first saw The Saguaro’s bright splashes of color taking over the whitewashed building, I was scared. I am a major fan of vibrant design but too often this can edge more on the side of kitsch. »READ MORE
If you’re looking for something to do this weekend, you’re in luck. From cocktail carousels to Four Peaks Brewery’s first Kilt Fest to Missoni mayhem at My Sister’s Closet that may rival the Target experience, our town is chock full of happenings this weekend. Clear your calendar of anything boring and check out our round-up below.
Scottsdale’s new establishment The Saguaro Hotel may be Arizona’s freshest and most vibrant place for a weekend respite. More destination than staycation, the hotel, which was designed by New York-based architectures Stamberg Aferiat, is a vivid tribute to the colorful sights and animated settings of the Southwest, with a color palette of tangerine, buttery yellow, magenta and bright, rich green. If the atmosphere and welcoming spa isn’t enough to bring you out, however, perhaps the restaurants will – most notably, modern Mexican eatery Distrito, the sibling of Iron Chef’s Jose Garces’ celebrated Philadelphia dig of the same name.
Stemming from the hotel’s southwestern shades, the delicious interior design of Distrito is energetic and contemporary, based upon the brilliant, spirited hues of Mexican culture. Designer Jun Aizaki, who hailed from Brooklyn, New York’s Crème Design Collective, was inspired by the landscapes of the region and created the restaurant’s interior to feel both traditional and fresh. A colorful skull feature by the lobby entrance, for example, is celebratory of Mexico’s Day of the Dead; a backlit resin bar counter with butterfly embeds, a mosaic felt ball feature wall resembling bright gumballs and a woven flat elastic screen wall at the banquettes are novel, modern and invigorating. Clothespin chandeliers and table tops sprinkled with pink and gold glitter add a further funky edge to the restaurant’s style. Guests can order Hamachi tacos fresh off the skillet, a variety of Barbacoa, margaritas from over 100 varieties of tequila at the margarita bar and the tortilla and guacamole station, where tortillas are made-to-order on a quilted stainless steel food-vendor-style post, are authentically delicious by chef’s design.
Distrito at The Saguaro | 4000 Drinkwater Boulevard | Scottsdale, AZ | 480-970-4444
It’s that time again for the greatest show on grass. Sure we’re excited about the 16th hole, but the Waste Management Phoenix Open offers much more than cheering for our hometown hero Phil Mickelson from Monday, January 30 – February 5. For a guide to all official daytime golf events, click here.
For those 21-and older swing into the Coors Light Birds Nest, just across from the Open’s grounds. This after-tournament tent party opens at 3:30 p.m. each day February 1 – 4 with multiple bars and a giant stage for acts that include The Goo Goo Dolls and Will.i.am this year. Admission is $25 – $35, and $120 for VIP. For tickets and more info, click here.
Here’s what’s rockin’ the Birds Nest:
Wednesday, February 1: Slightly Stoopid will kick off the four days of concerts, entertaining fans with their reggae rock fusion. Local band Elvis Before Noon and DJ Ronnie G will also perform. Show begins at 6:00 p.m.
Thursday, February 2: The Goo Goo Dolls will slide into the Birds Nest to perform some of your favorites like it was 1998 again. DJ Ronnie G and Kelly James will also perform beginning at 6:00 p.m.
Friday, February 3: Will.i.am of the Black Eyed Peas will be spinning records. Check out his DJ skills before his electro-dance album drops later this year. Also performing, The Chadwicks, Kelly James and yep, DJ Ronnie G beginning at 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, February 4: What PGA Tour wouldn’t be complete without an 80s cover band? Flashback Heart Attack, from southern California, performs with Champagne Tap, Smasht and DJ Ronnie G beginning at 6:00 p.m.
New to this year, with crowds reaching the thousands, cell phones are permitted. No more hiding that Droid in your sock! And speaking of socks, check out our Tee Time: A Gentlemen’s Guide To Dressing at The Open.
Image via WM Phoenix Open
As if you needed another reason to head to Scottsdale’s Old Town Farmer’s Market on Saturday mornings, you can add “educational” to the list. From now until March 3, join the Market, local chefs and local food producers for “Savoring the Season,” an Edible Education Series from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. every Saturday. Beginning January 14 with a class taught by Chef Stephanie Green about the goodness of greens, classes include tidbits, tastes and demonstrations from some of Arizona’s top chefs and favorite farms. There are 25 slots available per class on a first come, first served basis. The series is free, although donations will be accepted for the Fallow Fund, an emergency farm relief fund coordinated by Arizona Community Farmers’ Markets.
Follow the jump to check out the roster of participating chefs and producers:
The 25th season of Sunday A’Fair concerts comes back to Scottsdale Jan. 15 at the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts. The free outdoor concerts will be kicked off with acts such as The Samba Project and local music legend Walt Richardson and his band Walt Richardson and the Peaceful Warriors.
The four month long event features free outdoor concerts by the Valley’s top musicians along with fine arts and crafts, fun activities for children and families. Highlights for the Sunday A’Fair concerts will consist of music from all around the country and world, a film festival, AZ Rocks! Arizona’s Centennial Celebration, salsa dance numbers, and guided tours of sculptures in the park. Food, snacks, cocktails, beer and wine will be available, but unfortunately not for free.
Located at 7380 E. Second St., Sunday A’Fair will be hosted every Sunday until April 15.
We love a pun-filled store name, especially when the store in question caters to what some would call an “elderly clientele”… and the specific reason for the pun is to replace a morally questionable word only adds points. For these reasons and more, we were eager to check out the Scottsdale knitting mecca behind Knit Happens to see what all the fuss is about. With a large, open area and an endless selection of yarns and crocheting materials, Knit Happens is a one-stop shop for the experienced pro on the go. Plus, it’s super swanky (some would even say chic) turning all of your preconceived notions of G-Ma’s rocking in a circle upside down.
Knit one, pearl two still not sounding like your thing? Think about all of the money you’ll save while making monogrammed sweaters for your loved ones come the holidays just like Mrs. Weasley. Don’t have the patience to self-teach, but love the idea of colored yarn balls littering your home? Don’t stick a needle in your eye, Knit Happens offers classes for beginners (two four-hour sessions for just $40) or much more evolved sessions like how to make baby socks or Tunisian pillows (two sessions for $5o). The classes fill up quickly, so book your spot for winter sessions or just set up a private lesson to get real down with your inner crafting-queen. It won’t instantly turn you into a crazy cat lady, but it will have all your friends clamoring for an on-trend poncho or sweet leg warmers for festival season (Coachella, anyone?) and costume appropriate holidays.
Knit Happens | 8100 E. Indian School Road, Suite 105 | Scottsdale, AZ 85251
While we we’re sad to see the Tiki-tastic Drift Lounge close in Scottsdale, we have to admit this new party pool looks pretty cool. Check out this new pic from Spanish Fly, the new Mexican Beach Resort coming to Old Town (only without the whole resort part).
Click here to learn more, and until then, keep your shirt on.