ATX Bites’ Guide to Dining in Scottsdale/Phoenix

Oh my goodness – what a food scene in addition to quite the natural beauty in Scottsdale and Phoenix!

We had some time off during the holidays and wanted to ring in the new year somewhere else, so Scottsdale it was! It was a rather quick choice for me being that I’d been a few times for work and heard the food scene was up and coming.

Planning a trip with enough restaurant options is always a challenge and stressful but I made the most out of all of your recommendations and Yelp, too!

Brunch/Lunch

Farm and Craft

First up on the brunch list was Farm and Craft.

The Old Town Scottsdale location is not only an absolutely beauty, but with the outdoor seating area, it was so bright, lit and quite the happening spot for humans and pups!

I mean check out these pics and that quote on the wall – #goals

Cali Chicken Bowl and Turkey Wrap – YUM!

The entrance and outdoor seating

gah, so pretty

“All I want is food and affection” – TRUTH!

Bar with windows opening up to the outside bar top

Dreaming about the Cali Chicken Bowl

*Pro Tip – they have reverse happy hour everyday from 9PM-Close.

We got these yummies that same night as when we brunched there 🙂

Up front is the Avocado Lime Hummus and in the back is the Wild Mushroom Flatbread!

Daily Dose

On our way out for the day to Sedona, we stopped by Daily Dose for a hearty breakfast before the 2-hour drive and 2-hour hike ahead. Hardly had to wait 20 minutes even though this place had quite the crowd outside waiting for tables. (We have no issue sitting at the bar and in fact, prefer it – so we did)!

I ordered the Turkey Sausage and Polenta Bowl and hubs had the Flannel Hash (not pictured b/c he inhaled it faster than I could take a snap). The bowl was DIVINE! There is a bed of white beans below all of this goodness and the polenta are fried!

Turkey Sausage and Polenta Bowl

Olive & Ivy

Gah, what a beautiful spot on the waterfront in Old Town Scottsdale. You’ll want to walk around in the area before or after anyway because it’s just too pretty there. They had this really cool art installation going on too and apparently the installations rotate out with the seasons!

Ask to be seated at a table out on the patio or close to the patio along the windows. You’ll want to look out while you’re nomming. This place is HUGE though and there are many areas with different vibes to enjoy your meal.

I had the Mediterranean Salad (no tomatoes) and hubs ordered the Chopped Chicken Salad. We’d rate these as 5-stars on the favorite salad list of ours!

Up front is the Mediterranean Salad – loved the very light dressing on it.

They had an extensive pastry selection and I didn’t get anything but really wanted to! I did pair my salad with a refreshing glass of Chenin Blanc though!

Postino’s

A foodie friend of mine who just visited the area suggested Postino’s for it’s food and incredible deal on bevs – $5 glasses of wine and pitchers of beer before 5PM everyday! WHAT?!?

Indeed it’s true! I had an amazing glass of a French rose ($12 usually) but for $5!

Ordered the Farmer’s Scramble and hubby had the Roast Beef Panini on Ciabatta.

My scramble was so creamy and yum. There were a couple kinds of cheeses mixed in. The mixed greens on the side were totally woah! I had a bit of the panini and the roast beef was excellent!

Blanco Tacos & Tequila

Our first stop as soon as we landed in Phoenix was Blanco Tacos & Tequila at the Biltmore Fashion Mall area as it came highly recommended.

Don’t pass on the chips and salsa – those chips were some of the best I’ve had and the salsa was definitely something special!

We shared the combo fajitas with Carne Asada and Pollo. They were the best fajita meats I’ve ever had y’all. I don’t know if they seasoned it with some native red or green chile but dang, I’m drooling just thinking about it. We had them with corn tortillas which came in the cutest wrapping nice and hot!

Hubs has been doing this “perfect” gesture with his hands in my food pics lately.

SO GOOD!

Coffee

My trips are never complete without checking out cute coffeeshops. I found quite a few on our trip!

Cartel

Their location in Old Town Scottsdale was packed with people hanging out and working as well as just chit-chatting. There are a few rooms to sit in though so space wasn’t an issue. I really liked the Cardamom Capuccino I had at Cartel. Seemed like a unique drink and I really loved the fresh ground cardamom on top!

Berdena’s

Shortly after drinking the cardamom cap above, we walked past Berdena’s and it stopped me in my tracks. All the prettiest, modern, clean vibes at that place. It reminds me so much of Fleet Coffee in Austin.

First visit, I got a Chocolate Chip Walnut Cookie to avoid another cup of caffeination! It was a decent size cookie and here is a picture of it with the pretty orange table and chairs outside as well as a sneak peak in!

Chocolate Chip Walnut

Intentionally stopped by on day 3 for a latte – and they have HONEY LAVENDER!

Isn’t the tile gorgeous?

Sip Coffee & Beer Garage

Interesting name right? We totally ended up here randomly because it was our last day, we were sitting out at a park in the Arcadia area, enjoying the weather and I needed to pee! And before heading to the airport, I wanted some caffeine. Enter Sip Coffee & Beer Garage.

You can go through the drive through and grab you a bev, or go in – I’d suggest going in. Love the feels in this space. I had a hazelnut iced latte – looks like they make their own hazelnut and bottle it. I think…I really wanted the hubs to have a beer because their beer list was loaded up with all the super rare craft beers. He was “detoxing” from vacay alcohol consumption I guess though because he didn’t get anything even though his eyes lit up at the sight of the list.

Love their logo!

Dinner/Happy Hour

AZ88

Our first night, we dined at AZ88 for dinner. It’s in Scottsdale and had a very interesting vibe to it. More like a scene from a club but I think the white chairs and the loungy feel of it reminded me of Miami.

They’re known for their cocktails and their wings. These aren’t just your usual wings. They were so good! We had the teriyaki (comes with waffle fries – so crispy).

I had a Moscow Mule – it had cucumber puree in it and it was very very good! Hubs had an Aged Old Fashion and then another cocktail – he’s quite the cocktail aficionado and while he enjoyed his drinks, he said he had better elsewhere.

Regardless, I’d suggest dining at AZ88! The wings and burger were excellent!

Buck’n (teriyaki wings)

Burger Au Poivre – loved the black peppercorn and burgundy sauce!

Citizen Public House

I found Citizen Public House on Yelp during my pre-planning days and it came highly rated! Made a reservation just to be sure we got a table and I booked it for 5:30 so we could take advantage of Social Hour until 6PM.

Probably was too early because we had this epic charcuterie board and were full! They’ve got $5 glasses of special wine and a great deal on cocktails too so definitely check it out. It’s in Old Town Scottsdale and it’s a beautiful space with great service!

It got pretty full for dinner service so that was a good sign. Wish we had more room in our tummies to eat dinner.

Charcuterie Board – it was really good – there was an apple butter on it that paired so well with the gorgonzola!

Bitter and Twisted Cocktail Parlour

If you want to go into downtown Phoenix, go and have a cocktail and dinner at Bitter and Twisted! Get on the waitlist if you’re like us and saw a bit of a line at the door. Yelp has the Waitlist function and we only had a 20 minute wait before getting a spot inside. They have a doorman and at first glance, you’ll think this place is a bit pretentious. After going in, you’ll appreciate the limited access as you won’t have people swarming around you if you sit at the bar like we did.

Their cocktail menu is beautifully illustrated and HUGE so try to take a deep breath and flip through for your favorite spirit. The last page was our go-to since it had their best sellers on the list and it made the choice a bit easier. I went with the Lemongrass Collins and it was perfect. Hubs loved his Old Fashioned!

The Lemongrass Collins – large right?!

Go in hungry because you’ll want to eat their Chef’s creations! I had the Chish and Fips (yes, I spelled that right) and hubs ordered the “Dragon” Dumpling Burger. The menu has an Asian flare to it and the Chef has really nailed it! Sadly, I wasn’t able to take pics of my food because it was dark and a pic wouldn’t do it justice. The burger quite possibly is the best burger we’ve ever devoured. It was a burger that tasted like the tastiest dumpling! Enough from me…just go…trust me!

Anyway, as you have probably gathered, we ate and drank our way through Scottsdale and Phoenix. It’s always fun exploring new towns and experiencing the culinary scene!

If you need more recommendations for your future trip, just let me know. I have a list of others I’d love to hit up on my next visit. Hope this was helpful!

Until next time, Bon Appetite!

-Shveta

January, 2018

 

Winter Is Coming – to Andiamo Italiano!

I live for the chance to try Andiamo Italiano’s seasonal menus! Their Winter Harvest Dinner is this Thursday, December 21st so hop on over to their website and get the deets!

Dining with fellow foodies is always such a blast at Andiamo. Daniela, #bosslady and Owner, is the ultimate host and so attentive. She will walk around and get to meet you and know you so you’ll want to go back all the time.

I mean come on, it is my favorite Italian restaurant so I might be a bit biased, but Chef knocks it out of the park everytime I dine.

Andiamo hosted a group of us last night and we filled our tummies with all the new winter dishes:

Grilled Zucchini stuffed with cheese and capers – ADDICTIVE!

The creamiest spinach polenta!

Cold Green Bean salad with gorgonzola and walnuts – I ate my share and more!

The softest potato pillows aka GNOCCHI!

Linguine with truffles and pecorino cheese – so flavorful and delish!

What a rack – Lamb Chops in Pomegranate Juice!

Omg chocolate chip and ricotta mini cakes!

 

Drooling yet? You should be.

Andiamo only serves Italian wines from small vineyards in Italy – and Daniela knows all the owners and wine makers. I never go wrong with a choice of wine there. NEVER!

Head on over for dinner, date night or a solo dinner. You’ll absolutely love your experience and the food and I guarantee you’ll be a frequent flyer like myself!

 

Bon Appetite and Happy Holidays!

-Shveta

December, 2017

Oui Oui Gimme Everything Le Politique!

I’ve dined at Le Politique twice in the last week – once for brunch and once for dinner with my coworkers. Both experiences were great with outstanding food and drank!

First off brunch:

The short rib hash – with an egg on top!

Quiche Lorraine!

Legation Burger and Pommes Frites – I’d eat this everyday!

Love their custom cheese boards!

OH MY WORD, YOU MUST EAT THIS PAIN AU CHOCOLAT!

 

Dinner time grub:

A custom cheese board and Escargot to start!

The Boudin Blanc – really really good!

I’d say go in for brunch or dinner soon so you can see what all the hype is about. Let me know your faves! Oh and please, eat a pain au chocolat and get a capuccino!

Bon Appetite!

-Shveta

December, 2017

Getting “Knotty” at Knotty Deck and Bar

I don’t know if y’all have noticed, but the hotel scene in Austin is really starting to pick up their restaurant game! Perhaps it’s all the competition (man the restaurant business is so cutthroat right)?!

A few food bloggers and I dined at Knotty Deck and Bar at the Renaissance Austin Hotel earlier this week and I was blown away with the freshness of the ingredients, flavor of each dish, and the concept. Did you know they source their meat products from local farms and ranches, they have an on-premise garden and they pride themselves in having a scratch kitchen? I had NO IDEA!

Chef Chris who moved from Florida to take the position as Executive Chef, has been onboard at Knotty Deck since they opened a few years ago. He really knows what he’s doing and we thoroughly enjoyed our entire experience and everything we ate (which was ALOT)!

The bar staff make super creative drinks and they even randomly started barrel-aging a few spirits (totally unintentional really).

This Negroni was delish

Rye Fashioned – my hubs would love this one!

Of course, I had to get a glass or vino!

The Tex-Mex Charcuterie, Wild Boar Spare Ribs, and the Fried Pig Ears were a wonderful way to start our dining adventure (and night of spoiling)—–

Fried Pig Ears – and that fried egg!

Yasssssssss to charcuterie! They have a bee hive on the roof where they source their honeycomb!

Wild boar spare ribs and the side salad — so good!

Enjoy their deck if you can — it’s absolutely stunning and a beautiful view of the preserve below. I can’t wait to go back one evening when it cools down a bit. They’ve got a huge fire pit that makes for a perfect place to warm up and/or make s’mores!

Next up, more yummy food —

 

Lobsta!!!

Diver scallops!

Veggie Cavetelli

Ugh, I can’t remember the name of this fish but it’s rampant in the ocean and really tasty!

And although we had no more room in our tummies to eat anymore, a few highlights from the brunch menu came out and I’ve gotta go just for brunch now —

Knotty Patty Melt – grassfed beef, oaxaca, house bacon, hash brown, grilled onion, 2 farm eggs, picante aioli on rye bread!

Knotty Fries – pulled pork, farm fried egg, redneck cheddar, picante aioli, grilled onion

Lastly, out came dessert and we were beyond blown away…took some to-go because I didn’t have the heart to throw away the leftovers or leave it behind.

Chocolate and hazelnut HEAVEN!

Crumbled cake with meringue and edible flowers — isn’t it gorg!

Sweet Potato Cobbler – OMG!

Y’all, you’re depriving yourself of an amazing meal — go dine there now. You won’t be disappointed. It’s not even too far north, for those of you who don’t venture out of Central Austin.

Enjoy and until we dine together (soon),

Bon Appetite!

-Shveta

August 2017

Prince’s Hot Chicken from NashVegas comes to ATX!

When Prince’s Hot Chicken says they’re coming to Austin, you do what you can to get your a** over there to eat the HOT chicken! As an Envy Ambassador, I had the opportunity to devour some Prince’s Hot Chicken this week and takeover @findyourenvy ‘s IG account while I was there! Such a fun event and definitely one I didn’t want to miss!

It was hosted at Independence Brewing’s taproom by October Family Craft. The venue was perfect for the occasion and I loved the table setup! As part of our ticket price, we were treated to a Family Style meal and Indy Brewing beer tastings and pours.

I mean, how cute is this setting?

While the meal was being prepared, we were treated to samples of Independence Brewing’s Stash IPA, White Rabbit Wit, Austin Amber, and Power and Light Pale Ale. All were great for palate cleansing and cooling off the heat from the chicken we consumed shortly thereafter!


Then the food started coming out – potato salad, baked beans, seasoned fries, ranch dressing (to cool off that HOT chicken), pickles, the works! The potato salad was just like I like it – mustardy and less mayo. The seasoned fries were so addictive. Loved the crunch and the spice on them! The baked beans were sweet-ish and really helped to temper the upcoming heat from the chicken.

I only caught a pic of the fries – rest was on video!



Then plates and plates of HOT chicken. Mild, medium and hot were the levels of chicken. The guys at the table started with the hot. Not sure why! I mean, after that heat, everything was bound to be hot. Even the potato salad.
Genius that I am, started with the mild. So glad I started with the mild, y’all. Even the mild was quite hot. The medium was hotter and the hot, I could only eat 2 bites. All in all, I probably ate 1 and a half pieces of chicken given that I took too long taking pics and I had to cool down before I continued 🙂

I present my plate of yumminess! Hottest chicken on top, then medium, and then mild.



After we all died from the heat (yes, I’m generalizing and probably being a tad bit dramatic, but seriously the HOT chicken is hotter than anything I’ve eaten), we watched 3 brave souls eat a piece of the XXX Hot. It was soooooo black from the cayenne sauce, y’all.

XXX Hot Chicken




The night’s event was put together by October. Love that they’ve started this new series of events, Family Craft, which aims to highlight those families behind some of the country’s most inspired craft breweries and restaurants! I look forward to attending their next event!

May, 2017

Wined and Dined at Andiamo Italiano

This little gem of an authentic Italian restaurant might be tucked away, but it’s worth every mile you go off the beaten path!

A friend of mine enjoyed a totally indulgent experience at Andiamo earlier this month. Paired with wine, each course we enjoyed was thoughtfully prepared and even met my dietary restrictions when appropriate.

First up, super warm and absolutely divine, bread, and a glass of prosecco! The bread was heartier than you’re probably used to getting at the start of an Italian meal – nonetheless, I loved it and it turns out, each loyal customer does too!


Our first antipasti course was the Involtini di Melanzane. It appears to be similar to a stuffed canneloni (in my opinion). I’m not a fan of eggplant, but the breaded eggplant stuffed with ricotta and mozzarella was out of this world! And that homemade tomato sauce…OMG!


The Tartare di Salmone came out right after and let’s just say, I’ll be dreaming about it for a while! I don’t think I’ve had Italian-style tartare before. The salmon mixed with green olives, dijon, capers, green onions, EVOO, and lemon juice was so bright, zesty and flavorful.


Up next, the shining star of the night: Ravioli di Barbabietola. Holy wowzas! I’d never eaten beet ravioli before but I love beets and I love a good ravioli. This was a combo made in heaven! The homemade ricotta and the homemade pasta (yes, they make their own) sauteed in pistachio and on a bed of basil pesto was outstanding! Not too rich. Not too anything. Literally, every bite was just right. And how pretty in pink is it, right?

Winding down the meal, we enjoyed the Capesante e Gameberi and the Polpette Vegetariane. The shrimp and scallops in the Capesante were perfectly cooked and I loved that neither of them smelled seafood-y! Now the Polpettes usually come with a pea and tomato sauce, but due to my tomato allergy, I had it on a sauce of solely peas. The Polpettes went so well with the pea sauce. They were stuffed with cauliflower and cheese – more like a fritter, but really rich and good!




One can never dine at an Italian hot spot and leave without eating dessert! We were stuffed and so we almost left without dessert. But, Daniela, the owner, had me at nutella!


Enter the Rotolo alla Nutella. HOLY WOWWWWWWWWWWWWWW! Two of my favorite things – chocolate and nutella – in one dessert?! Yassssssssssss! This chocolate cake rolled in nutella was not only a beauty, but it tasted like heaven in a bite. I’m so glad I enjoyed it before heading out. I did have to be rolled out of the restaurant though 🙂

Oh, and if you were unaware, they host a wine dinner the last Tuesday of every month. $60 for 4 courses and full wine pairings. Call to make your reservation!

May, 2017