Thursday, August 09, 2007

News Flash

Sorry I have not keep up with my posts. I have some exciting news.... I have accepted the Advanced Culinary Arts position at Barry Goldwater High School. The district is building a brand new kitchen and dining area, so I am really excited. One of the assignments that I will be having my students complete is contributing to this site. There will be one monthly winner and their review will be posted. Also they will be expected to read and leave comments. I think these will make the site even and more informative, so stay tuned..............................................

Wednesday, November 15, 2006


Flo’s Asian Kitchen

15027 N. Thompson Peak Parkway
Scottsdale, AZ 85260
Under $20
Phone: 480-661-8883

Flo’s I am told by a very good friend who will go nameless (Greggy V) is the best Chinese food in the valley. We have argued time again about this and finally after numerous visits in the past couple of months, I will show to you that Flo’s is not "the best".
The food is good no doubt, fresh, and served hot. The problem is that the portions are small and for an average of 12 bucks a dish that is a big problem for a Chinese’s joint. Then again, it is Scottsdale. After visiting Flo’s your dogs will be upset with you because the doggy bags are very small.
The service was good on all three visits and the place was very busy each time, so they must be doing something right. Or could it be that this town lacks good Asian cuisine? I have yet to find anything remotely close to the quality I was use to living close to Boston.
If you are going to go to Flo’s bring your wallet you are going to need it. Feed the dogs before you leave because they will go hungry otherwise. And try the eggplant, both the better half and that above mentioned friend say it is the best item on the menu. One last bit of advice; don’t try to do any substuting, they will charge you extra as we learned only when getting the check. I would really like to hear any comments from the readers on their favorite Chinese/Asian restaurant so we can give it a try.
I will be reviewing Jade Palace here shortly, and as ways, happy eating Arizona.

Friday, November 03, 2006

A picture perfect evening in Carefree!

Carefree Station Restaurant is a great setting for dinner especially this time of year. Located at the end of Scottsdale Road and Cave Creek Road in Carefree, it is a drive from most places in the Valley. We were dinning in late October and since we chose to eat on the roof-top patio, the ladies need light jackets. The other options were an outside patio on the ground floor or the actual inside dinning room. The ground floor patio was actually very quaint and closed in, and the indoor dining area had a western theme. All areas were clean and inviting.
When we were seated the bartender came up right away and took our drink order and said she would also be taking our order (she was very helpful throughout entire meal). The libations were good, all be it expensive. The better half raved about her margarita and I know what you’re thinking, but she said it was great from the first slip not the last! The guys stuck with beer and it was nice to see Stella a trios on tap.
Getting to the food, the menu was massive and that may lead to some inconsistencies in the qualities of dishes. There are plenty of southwestern favorites and also typical steakhouse fare. I had the three enchilada dish, I was pretty hungry and also ordered a half salad (otherwise know as a dinner salad). Pricy at $3; the dressing was ok but the salad lacked any style. On the other hand Jones’s salad that was billed as half spinach was interesting with candied cashews, goat cheese and red peppers with a good tasting vinaigrette. The better half’s soup was a unique chicken tortilla and very tasty.
Main courses: As I said earlier, I had the enchiladas trio and it was different. As they usually say different is good, well ok, 2 out of 3 in this case. The chicken and pork were great, especially the cream sauce. The beef was super tough and lack flavor. The better half’s chili rellenos was a bit steep at $14 but she raved about it. Jones’s seafood pasta, $22, was plentiful and loaded with shrimp. The seafood lobster sauce was a little too fishy for me but then again I grew back east where the stuff is FRESH. This would also go for the southwestern shrimp and scallop dish. Greggy found the scallops to be a little gritty, but the shrimp where huge and plentiful, cooked just right.
Finally, we ended the meal with a fabulous dessert. The "chocolate eruption" was wonderful. It was layer; macadamia nut vanilla ice cream, chocolate cake, and fudge coated with a hard chocolate crust dusted with coconut. The better half doesn't care for coconut, but enjoyed several bites of the ice cream.
In all I would give Carefree Station 3 out of 4 starsß---------4 people went and ate, and 3 went home happy
:> ). That’s it for this week, stay turned coming up next Flo’s and then Don and Charlie’s. As always happy eating Arizona.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


Move over In-and-Out, step a side Wendy’s there is a new leader in the best fast food burger---- Freddy’s Steak burgers. Located at 51st ave and Bell Road, it is first one of the chain in the state. Freddy’s is from Kansas originally with about 20 stores nation wide.
As for the burgers they are great!! Made of chopped steak and no filler like the other chains. The patties are thin so a double is the way to go. The thing that makes it an over all winner is the fries (shoe string and seasoned). On both occasions the food was hot and fresh. We have yet to try the custard which is also what has help make Freddy’s famous. If it is anything like the rest of the food, I am sure it is awesome. Anyone looking to go in partners on a franchise should give the better-half a call (she controls the dough) because once word spreads, Freddy’s is going to be a huge hit anywhere in the valley. As always happy eating Arizona.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Up coming reviews- Carefree Station, Flo's and Jade Palace. I am also askingfor reguests of restaurants you would like reviewed. As always happy eating Arizona.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Zest- Spirited Dinning

Zest- Spirited Dinning
4117 N. 16th St.
Phoenix, 85016
Contemporary American
$20 - $40
Phone: (602) 274-7442

Date Visited-- 8/15/06
Zest is located in an older part of Phoenix. Please don’t let this dissuade you for giving it a try. It will be in the running for the coveted Bairdy’s Best award for dining and food preparation for 2006.
"The better half" as she has been referring to herself gave it a try before we took in a movie. As I said, from the outside you may not be impressed, but the inside is another story. Very art orientate and romantic, this is a perfect date place. The wine list was well match and offered many selections by the glass. The high light of the starters was the Eggplant Cheesecake, it was recommended by the waiter. I am not a huge fan of the vegetable, but I know that the better half is and we gave it a shot. I now have a new found taste for the eggplant when prepare like this a definite must try.
There were at least ten entrées offered covering all areas of fish, fowl, beef and vegetarian. The meal starts with a nice table side salad. For the entrees I choose the pork chop again, at the recommendation of the waiter. It was huge, covering the plate, cooked just right and coated in panko bread crumbs. This chop was outstanding, I could only power down half of it. The side dish, smashed potatoes, and the chop were covered in cranberry orange chutney. Shana had the sea bass and raved about. The fish was cooked to her liking and was served with mango rice, which was interesting~ her exact words.
We finished with Banana’s Foster but we where too full to complete enjoy it and took most of it to go. This was an extremely enjoyable evening with delicious food, great service and over all a great dining experience. Keep an eye out for the end of the year awards; I am sure Zest will be walking away with a few. Give Zest a try for a romantic evening and as always Happy Eating Arizona.

Monday, October 16, 2006



7217 E. Fourth Ave.
Scottsdale, 85251

CUISINES:Mediterranean/SouthwesternPRICE:$20 - $40MORE INFO:Phone: (480) 947-9500

Date visited 10/06/2006

Located in old town Scottsdale, this restaurant has a strong reputation. It did not live up to the hype. As a party of four we all agreed that the setting (a remodeled house) was quaint. The service was adequate. The wine list was very average, but it did offer many half bottles of quality wine.

Now to the important part, the food, which should be more accurately titled American bistro. The bread basket was plentiful and contained two dips. The hummus was very bland, but the eggplant spread was enjoyed by everyone in the party. With a limited menu, 7 entrée choices and two salads, everyone selected a different meal. The filet was by far the best presentation and tasting, the sides where well matched. The lamb was a bit over done and the side dishes where very bland. The pork chop (stick with Zest for a great pork chop!! -see future post) was over done, but the sweet potatoes casserole that accompanied it was delicious. Finally, the bouillabaisse was extremely fishy and the shrimp cooked beyond tough.
Over all the food was a let down especial at those prices. Again for similar dining experience give Zest in Phoenix a try (check back soon for a full review on Zest). And as always happy eating Arizona.

Where to eat when in the valley of the sun.

In the future this will be the site for honest and informative restaurant reviews.