Saturday: 1-year anniversary party at Good Time Charli’s in Chandler

BY Jess Harter Friday, September 15, 2017

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Chandler neighborhood craft pub Good Time Charli’s will celebrate its one-year anniversary with an all-day Neon Party on Saturday.

There will be live music inside and outside, appearance by the Three Olives and Fireball girls, and raffles and prize giveaways all day, including a $100 prize for best dressed in neon.

Beer and spirit samples will be available. Because of the festivities, a limited food menu will be offered.

Vendors on site will include local businesses, including OHSO Brewery, Arizona Distilling, 3 Amigos Tequila, Doggy Day Care, The Hair Loft, Independent Motorcycles, Plant Nite, Wookie Tattoos, Dripping Wick Vapor Parlor, and Journey Maps.

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Saturday: Rockin’ Taco Street Fest in downtown Chandler

BY Jess Harter Friday, September 15, 2017

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The sixth annual Rockin’ Taco Street Fest – featuring creative tacos from two dozen local restaurants – will take place noon-9 p.m. Saturday in downtown Chandler. Activities will live music, wrestling, taco eating competitions, a salsa competition, a low rider car show, and a margarita hut with flair bartending. Admission is $12.

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Today: Fossil Creek Whiskey release at Adventurous Stills

BY Jess Harter Friday, September 15, 2017

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Tempe craft distillery Adventurous Stills will host a release party for its Fossil Creek Whiskey from 5-10 p.m. today. Its tasting room will offer $5 cocktails, and the Wandering Donkey food truck will be on site from 6-9 p.m. tonight. The smoky whiskey will be the sixth spirit released by the distillery, which was launched in 2015.

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Tuesday: Monthly ‘3rd Tuesday’ dinner at Romeo’s Euro Cafe

BY Jess Harter Thursday, September 14, 2017

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Slow-cooked beef short ribs with spinach-red pepper Israeli couscous will be the featured entree for this month’s ‘‘3rd Tuesday’’ dinner at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at Romeo’s Euro Cafe in downtown Gilbert.

The three-course dinners feature three new dishes from chef Romeo Taus’ creative kitchen crew paired with three wines selected by the knowledgable waitstaff:

  • Medi Trio: Stuffed grape leaves, caramelized onion, artichoke hearts, blue and feta cheeses mini puff pastry, tomato, radish, green onion, caper, roasted pepper, parsley , EVOO & balsamic vinegar, goat cheese fritter. Paired with 2016 Brancott Estate Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough New Zealand.
  • Beef Short Ribs: Slow-cooked beef short ribs with spinach-red pepper Israeli couscous, French green beans, pickled carrots, fennel, garlic roasted peppers, and veal demi-glace. Paired with 2015 Hangtime Pinot Noir California.
  • Chocolatake: Rich chocolaty cheesecake with blackberry sauce. Paired with 2015 Vindicated Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley.

Cost is $36 per person plus tax and tip. RSVP: 480-962-4224.

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Today: Beer & Bacon Night with Upslope Brewing at The Hungry Monk

BY Jess Harter Thursday, September 14, 2017

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Upslope Brewing will be the featured brewery when The Hungry Monk in Chandler hosts its monthly Beer & Bacon Night from 5-9 p.m. today.

Beers on tap from the Boulder, Colo., brewery will include:

  • Craft Lager
  • Brown Ale
  • Citra Pale Ale
  • Thai White Ale

Bacon food specials from beer chef Gidi:

  • Loaded Baked Potato Fries: Hand-cut fries tossed in house seasoning and topped with bacon, shredded cheese, green onion, and fry sauce. $9
  • Stuffed Spicy Ralphie Burger: Bison blend brown ale patty stuffed with bacon, jalapenos, and cheddar and topped with more bacon, ghost pepper cheese, and Sriracha bacon aioli. Choice of side. $12.50
  • Oink’d Bahn Mi: Sweet chile glazed bacon and pork meatballs, pickled vegetables, cucumber, jalapeno, and Sriracha bacon aoili on toasted hoagie roll. Choice of side. $11
  • Chocolate Chip Bacon Cookie Ice Cream Sandwich: Two homemade spent-grain chocolate chip bacon cookies stuffed with vanilla ice cream, drizzled with chocolate and caramel sauce, and  topped with whipped cream. $6

There also will be a special 5 p.m. tapping of a Beer Camp collaboration between Sierra Nevada, The Perch, and Oak and Ore Pub.

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Marketing gurus to launch Valley food & drink website Table Riot in November

BY Jess Harter Wednesday, September 13, 2017

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Despite its rank as the fifth-largest city in the United States, Phoenix suffers a dearth of locally focused food and drink websites, especially ones that publish daily or at least several times per week.

One of the most common questions I get is, ‘‘Why don’t you start a Scottsdale version of Mouth by Southwest?’’ Or, ‘‘Why don’t you do a West Valley version?’’ Or a CenPho version, etc.

There’s definitely a hunger, pardon the pun, for more local food and drink information.

So it’s welcome news to hear Tucson Foodie (pictured above), an excellent food and drink website covering our neighbor to the south, is launching a sister site, Table Riot, in the Valley in November.

Table Riot, according to its media release, will feature ‘‘in-depth stories, videos, restaurant reviews and spotlights of the Valley’s food, drink and dining culture.’’

That’s basically what Tucson Foodie has been doing for nine years. It publishes several stories every weekday and sometimes some on weekends. It is supported by display ads and sponsored content.

Tucson Foodie founder Adam Lehrman has teamed up with Valley marketing maven Ty Largo, who will be Table Riot’s editorial director.

The pair’s ‘‘day jobs’’ almost certainly will create concerns among restaurants and readers over apparent conflicts of interest that may challenge what Table Riot promises will be an ‘‘honest take on the culinary community-at-large.’’

Largo’s Awe Collective handles marketing for many of the Valley’s high-profile restaurants. At least one of Lehrman’s Soapbox Social Media restaurant clients has a presence in the Valley.

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Sept. 28: Firestone Walker wild beer expert at The Hungry Monk

BY Jess Harter Wednesday, September 13, 2017

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Jeffers Richardson, director of Firestone Walker’s acclaimed Barrelworks wild beer facility in Buellton, Calif., will host ‘‘“Jeffers Drops Acid …Knowledge” at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 28, at The Hungry Monk in Chandler.

The three-hour class – part of a national tour by Richardson – will explore how acidity changes the flavor, mouthfeel and overall perception of wild beers.

Richardson was Firestone Walker’s original brewmaster when it opened in 1996. He worked a several other breweries, but returned to Firestone Walker in 2013 to launch Barrelworks, which handles the brewery’s wild ale program as well as its barrel-aging program.

Barrelworks, which has been referred to as ‘‘the cathedral of barrels,’’ occupies Firestone Walker’s original building in Buellton; the brewery has since relocated to Paso Robles, about 85 miles away.

Thursday’s class is $30, which includes a reception beer plus several limited-release beers during class. Seating is limited, so check ticket availability here.

The Hungry Monk will have eight Firestone Walker beers, including four Barrelworks beers, on tap for the evening.

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AZ Restaurant Week’s fall edition kicks off Friday

BY Jess Harter Tuesday, September 12, 2017

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The twice-a-year Arizona Restaurant Week, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, kicks off its fall edition Friday and runs through Sept. 24. More than 100 participating restaurants will offer three-course, prix-fixe menus for either $33 or $44 per person. See the list of restaurants and their special menus here.

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Phoenix New Times hires its 3rd food editor this year

BY Jess Harter Tuesday, September 12, 2017

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Felicia Campbell, who introduced herself as Phoenix New Times’ new food editor on May 11, is leaving the Valley after just four months. No explanation was given for Campbell’s departure, but the alt-weekly already has hired its third food editor of 2017: Chris Malloy, a Philly native who moved to Arizona in July. Welcome, Chris!

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Salad and Go announces 1st Queen Creek location

BY Jess Harter Friday, September 8, 2017

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Fast-growing drive-through chain Salad and Go, which just opened its 10th Valley location in west Chandler, isn’t slowing down. The Gilbert-based concept has announced its first Queen Creek location on the southeast corner of Ellsworth and Rittenhouse. No opening date has been announced, but look for it in early 2018.

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