Taste Tidbits

bitter twisted

Foodie news roundup for the week of Sept. 21.

National Coffee Day is Sept. 29, and The Refuge is celebrating with free drip coffee all day. You can also get three bags of Cafe Esperanza specialty coffee and teas for $25 or their new Especial ground blend will be three bags for $20.

Chef Justin Beckett is one of only three Arizona chefs invited to participate in the Thomas’ Hometown Breakfast Battle, and the winner is decided by fans. To celebrate its 135th anniversary, Thomas’ selected 135 chefs from across the country to battle for the most creative breakfast recipes featuring Thomas’ English muffins or bagels. Beckett’s “Farm to Bagel” entry celebrates the best in Arizona foods. The homemade spicy pimento spread is made with Shamrock Dairy milk and roasted jalapeños, and the fresh veggies are sourced from McClendon’s Select and Arizona Microgreens. You can order it during brunch (Saturday and Sunday) for a limited time at Southern Rail. Voting began Sept. 14 at thomasbreakfastbattle.com with round one spanning two weeks. The first round will narrow the contest from 135 chefs to just 16. The subsequent rounds will each last one week yielding eight winners, then four, then two. The chef with the most votes will be crowned “Thomas’ Hometown Breakfast Battle Grand Champion,” and win a grand prize of $25,000.

On Saturday, Sept. 26, Sprinkles Cupcakes and DC Comics are teaming up to celebrate the caped crusader for National Batman Day. Sprinkles will debut the Dark Knight Cupcakes Saturday, and the first 100 customers to dress up as Batman will receive a free cupcake on that day.

Sept. 25-27, Luci’s Healthy Marketplace in Phoenix hosts an “Early Bird Holiday Sale” where all gifts will be 20 percent off.

MAD Greens will open its fourth Valley location at 7th Avenue and McDowell on Sept. 29 with Free Salad Day, which will also serve as a fundraiser for Phoenix Children’s Hospital.  During Free Salad Day, guests will receive a free beverage and full-sized salad of their choice and will be able to donate to PCH’s Hope Fund.

A new pizza joint comes to Mesa Sept. 28. Eklectic Pie will feature a wallet-friendly selection of pizzas, salads, sandwiches and kids’ meals along with the option to make-your-own ‘za. Eklectic Pie pizzas are cooked using the latest oven technology creating a perfect crust in three minutes.

Chompie’s, Arizona’s New York Deli, announces its new seasonal menu of delicious autumn treats for dine in or take out to be available starting this month through Thanksgiving. Fall-friendly eats include pumpkin-cranberry-pecan pancakes, pumpkin creme brulee, white cheddar macaroni and more.

Pedal Haus Brewery, from owner and restaurateur Julian Wright (formerly of La Bocca and Handlebar Tempe), rolls into Downtown Tempe this month. Pedal Haus is a Mill Avenue brewery, restaurant and entertainment destination slated for a grand opening Friday, Sept. 25. The brewery will feature hand-crafted European-style beers, a Belgian-American gastropub food menu and the city’s largest patio.

Bitter & Twisted in Downtown Phoenix is launching a brand new, limited time offering – The B&T Menu (pictured). Through the end of September, choose from two of the most talked about menu items of the past year – the Ramen Burger and the Dumpling Burger – plus a cocktail and dessert of your choice.

Friday, Sept. 25 through Sunday, Sept, 27, Miracle Mile Deli is honoring their 66th year in business with an amazing deal. Purchase an entrée, sandwich or breakfast dish and you can get a pie or pint of beer for just 66 cents. Choose from any of their four craft beers on tap or try a slice of apple, cherry, blueberry, coconut meringue, lemon meringue, pumpkin, pecan or Boston cream pie.

Tomaso Maggiore, will celebrate the one-year anniversary of his latest restaurant venture, Vivo Ristorante!, on Sept. 24. “An Evening in Veneto” will feature a celebratory dinner with a four-course meal prepared by the esteemed culinary artist. Each meal will be complemented with wine pairings selected by guest sommelier, Lori Hassler. The reception will begin at 6:30 p.m. with bellini cocktails, which will lead to dinner at 7 p.m. The event is $75 per person excluding tax and gratuity. Call 480.699.9081 as reservations are highly recommended.

Wednesday, Sept. 30, Cowboy Ciao will host Southern Wine & Spirits wine specialist, Chris Kempski, in a battle of the bottles against owner/wino Peter Kasperski. Guests will enjoy a five-course meal with two tastings per course. Diners will vote blind as to which wine paired better with each dish. Starts at 7 p.m. $55. Reservations are required; call 480.946.3111.

TEXAZ Grill is celebrating 30 years in October at the corner of Bethany Home Road and 16th Street, so owner/head chef Steve Freidkin is offering up a can’t-miss food and drink special. Diners can enjoy any chicken-fried entree plus beverage and dessert for $19.85 (the year that TEXAZ Grill opened) on Sept. 30 and Oct. 30.

Start your Saturday with Yoga + Brunch at Salut Kitchen Bar. In celebration of National Yoga Month, Salut is teaming up with Laughing Buddha Yoga to host a free yoga class on Sept. 26. Yogis of all skill levels are invited to unwind with a special class from 7:30 to 8:30 am and stick around for 20 percent off brunch.

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