Rick Phillips of EATERAZ to Open Casual Restaurant with BBQ Component + Moonshine -- and Guess Who's Partnering with Him?

Categories: News

Bootleggers---brick-wall.jpg
Courtesy Photo
Inside Bootleggers
As the likable smart-ass behind the food scene blog EATERAZ and the guy who puts on both the Arizona Taco Festival and the Arizona BBQ Festival (all with considerable help from his equally likeable and possibly more smart-ass partner Dave Tyda), Rick Phillips is known for being a magazine publisher and a think-outside-the-box festival producer and promoter.

See also:
Arizona Barbecue Festival 2013 at Salt River Fields
Third Annual Arizona Taco Festival at Salt River Fields

But he's about to put on yet another hat: restaurateur. Yep, the guy who has reported on restaurants since the '90s (he co-founded Desert Living magazine, you'll recall) is now going to own one, and verily, it shall be called Bootleggers, located in a strip mall at 3375 East Shea Boulevard. What's more, he's got big-name talent helping him with the menu, plus a bona-fide pit-master to handle the 'cue. Here's how it all went down:

Bootleggers---Kevin-Slade.jpg
Courtesy Photo
James Fox
Phillips became friends with KCBS-winning pit-master Kevin Slade through his AZ BBQ festivals, and one day, Slade suggested the two of them open a restaurant. Philips, who says he panicked at the thought, called Matt Carter, who keeps himself pretty busy these days with Zinc Bistro, The Mission, The House and soon, a new Zinc at Sky Harbor Airport. Carter immediately expressed interest in helping with the project, reportedly saying, "I couldn't resist being part of a place that serves a cold can of PBR."

Truth is, Carter himself is a bit of a 'cue buff, competing in barbecue competitions with his team called the Smoke Junkies, so Phillips' concept would have obvious appeal. As for Phillips, he says he was eager to see what a guy with Carter's culinary chops would do with, say, chicken wings. (Carter won't actually be in the kitchen but he will be involved with the project.)


Location Info

Venue

Map

Bootleggers

3375 E. Shea Blvd., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Zinc Bistro

15034 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale, AZ

Category: Music

The Mission

3815 N. Brown Ave., Scottsdale, AZ

Category: Restaurant

The House

6936 E. Main St., Scottsdale, AZ

Category: Restaurant

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8 comments
roy4
roy4

A BBQ place loses all credibility with a true BBQ aficionado if they use a Southern Pride pit. What a joke. The fact that these guys think using a Southern Pride is a selling point tells me all I need to know about this place.

Chris Rudhe
Chris Rudhe

Hey, I know those guys!!!! That's awesome!!!! Can't wait to get over there to check it out.

Cheryl Cole Hussey
Cheryl Cole Hussey

So excited to see this coming to our neighborhood! Check it out Heather Doyle Robert GilbrethKatherine Hudson-Gilbreth!

Kimberlynn Hall Tovrea
Kimberlynn Hall Tovrea

the first sentence of this piece has me ROTFLMAO.... Couldn't be a truer statement out there.. God love those boys! Best of luck, love, love, love the look of the joint!

azother1
azother1

I guess the North 51 Grill didn't make it?

inresponse
inresponse

@roy4 Bootleggers is not a "BBQ Restaurant", it's an american food restaurant that has some BBQ on the menu. There is a full menu of other great food (mentioned in the article) that hopefully folks will enjoy. I'm sure you will agree, that great BBQ has nothing to do with the smoker, it has to do with who is behind it. Lucky for Bootleggers, that there will be tons of great food there besides BBQ. ~ Bootleggers.

roy4
roy4

Great BBQ has nothing to do with the smoker? LOL. Why don't you give some guys like Aaron Franklin, John Mueller or some of the guys at Kreuz and let me know if they think great BBQ has nothing to do with the smoker. The person manning the pits is a big part of it, but to say that great BBQ has nothing to do with the smoker shows your ignorance of what great BBQ is.

C-Bass
C-Bass

@roy4

You mad bro?  What credentials do you have that allow you to sound so arrogant about this topic?? 

Oh yeah, and what are we giving Franklin, Mueller and the Kreuz boys?  A rib, a hand, a cold beer.......a call????

You need to relax dude, it's not healthy to be that unhappy.

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