Okra: Crudo Team to Open Southern-Inspired Second Restaurant in Central Phoenix

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Courtesy of Crudo
Chef Cullen Campbell, wife/co-owner Maureen Campbell and co-owner/mixologist, Micah Olson, will open a second restaurant this summer.
We've got three words for you, Phoenicians: Tennessee Hot Chicken.

That's right, chef Cullen Campbell and the team behind Crudo and Bar Crudo plan to open a second restaurant this summer that will blend Southern cuisine with a hint of the Italian-influenced fare for which the chef's become known. Called Okra, the new restaurant will, of course, feature craft cocktails from award-winning mixologist Micah Olson, who's also behind the newly-opened Counter Intuitive bar in Old Town Scottsdale.

And here's more good news. Though Okra isn't expected to open in summer 2015, you don't have to wait that long to get a taste of what Campbell's got cooking. Next month Crudo will host two Okra preview dinners, featuring a three-course, cocktail-paired menu of dishes and drinks that will appear at the new restaurant.

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Arizona Beer Bill Becomes Law

Categories: News

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Craft brewers across the state: Raise your glasses, kick back your boots and stroke your beards in triumph.

On Tuesday, Gov. Doug Ducey signed into law S.B. 1030, the Arizona Beer Bill proposed late last year that will allow brewers to produce more beer while retaining their retail locations. We've discussed the bill before.

The new law won't go into effect until the end of June, but its impact will be widely felt. Under the old legislation, brewers could only produce 40,000 barrels of beer per year at each of their locations (a barrel is equivalent to two 15.5-gallon kegs, or 31 gallons of beer). Once crossing that threshold, a brewery would be labeled an "in-state producer" and would be forced to divest itself of additional locations, such as restaurants or tasting rooms -- not a great situation for a brewery such as Four Peaks Brewing Co., which operates brewpub locations in Tempe, Scottsdale and at Sky Harbor in addition to a large production facility at Wilson Street in Tempe.

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DeSoto Central Market in Downtown Phoenix to Open on April 11: Here's a List of the Restaurants You'll Find There

Categories: News

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Courtesy of the DeSoto Central Market
The downtown Phoenix dining hub will include Walrus & the Pearl, an oyster bar.
San Francisco has Ferry Building Marketplace. New York's got Chelsea Market. Until now, Phoenix hasn't had a central dining hub and grocery to call its own.

Shawn Connelly intends to change that on April 11, when the DeSoto Central Market opens its doors to the public. Located on Roosevelt and Central Avenue, the 17,138-square-foot property will house several restaurants, a coffee shop, a market, a bar, and event/meeting space, says DeSoto manager Connelly.

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Here Are The 2015 Arizona Culinary Hall of Fame Inductees

Categories: News

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Lauren Saria
Last night the Scottsdale League for the Arts inducteed Arizonas top culinary talent into the state's Culinary Hall of Fame.
Last night at Livewire in Scottsdale, the Scottsdale League for the Arts recognized some of the state's top culinary talent at the Arizona Culinary Hall of Fame awards ceremony.

The award categories included Chef of the Year, Restaurateur of the Year, and Beverage Master of the Year, among others, with each recipient receiving an Ed Mell-designed trophy and $500 to be donated to the charitable organization of their choosing. This year's ceremony marked the 24th annual Arizona Culinary Hall of Fame awards, making the annual event the longest running culinary awards in the state.

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Chase Field to Debut New Restaurants, Including Lo-Lo's Chicken and Waffles and America's Taco Shop

Categories: News

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Heather Hoch
Who doesn't want their baseball with a side of fried chicken and waffles?
When the Arizona Diamondbacks take the field for the 2015 season opener on Monday, April 6, attendees will have a slew of new dining options to explore at Chase Field. We already told you about the D-backs' newest creation, the Churro Dog, but it turns out the over-the-top dessert is far from the only new thing to eat at the stadium this season.

Chase Field will debut new restaurants and several new dining options that include a place for food trucks and a craft beer destination inside the stadium.

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Greasewood Flat in Scottsdale to Close; Western Antiques, Decor to Be Sold at Auction

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greasewoodflat.net
The landmark Scottsdale bar and restaurants will close at the end of the month.
For more than 40 years, Greasewood Flat in Scottsdale has attracted a diverse crowd of cowboys, bikers, and tourists looking to get a taste of the Old West.

Sadly, at the end of the month, the restaurant and bar at 27375 North Alma School Parkway will close its doors for good.

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Kevin Binkley Is Arizona's Only 2015 James Beard Foundation Award Finalist

Categories: News

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Photograph by David Zickl
Chef Kevin Binkley makes the short list of James Beard Award nominees this year.
This morning, the James Beard Foundation announced the list of finalists of the annual James Beard Foundation Awards. The short list of chefs, bartenders, restaurants, and restaurateurs comes about a month after the foundation announced a long list of nominees back in February.

This year, chef Kevin Binkley of Binkley's Restaurant in Cave Creek is the only Arizonan to make the list of James Beard Award finalists. For the fourth year in a row, Binkley is a finalist in the Best Chef: Southwest category.

Binkley is up against five other nominees in the category this year, including three chefs who were also on last year's finalist list: Bryce Gilmore of Barley Swine in Austin; Hugo Ortega of Hugo's in Houston; and Justin Yu of Oxheart in Houston. Aaron Franklin of Franklin Barbecue in Austin and Martín Rios of Restaurant Martín in Santa Fe are also finalists this year.

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Cuisine & Wine Bistro, Formerly MWC Bistro, Is Now Open in Gilbert

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It's only been about a year since Zoya Vora-Shah, owner of My Wine Cellar in Ahwatukee, opened a second restaurant and wine bar called MWC Bistro in Gilbert. Both spots offered a neighborhood vibe and a hand-picked wine list, as well as craft beers and a menu of seasonal cuisine.

But this week MWC Bistro changed hands. At the new Cuisine & Wine Bistro owners Fabrice and Mairead Buschtetz plan to focus more on food, with a new menu that draws inspiration from international cuisines.

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Here Are the Results of the 2015 Devour Phoenix Bartending Competition

Categories: News

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Lauren Saria
Nine Valley bartenders particiapted in yesterday's cocktail competition.
Nine Valley bartenders went head-to-head for the title of Best Cocktail in The Valley 2015 yesterday at Crescent Ballroom during the Devour Phoenix Bartending Competition. The event, the second high profile bartending competition held this spring, featured bartenders from local restaurants including Crudo, Citizen Public House, Hula's Modern Tiki, and The Parlor.

Each bartender was assigned a locally distilled spirit -- either Arizona Distilling Company's gin, bourbon, or moonshine, and during the competition, bartenders faced off in three rounds of three people. Competitors were given a generous ten minutes to make their cocktail for a panel of four judges.

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9 Metro Phoenix Restaurants Scored a "D" from the County Health Department in February

Categories: News

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Evie Carpenter
One downtown Phoenix dining spot failed to pass a county health inspection this month.
We're sad to say there were quite a few restaurants that didn't pass their county health inspections this month. Sure, the majority of restaurants scored an "A" on their inspections, but these nine spots had some trouble. And while some of the violations may not sound so offensive, many of the mistakes that landed restaurants on this list are considered priority violations, or ones that "directly contributes to increasing the risk of foodborne illness or injury."

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