If you are out and about this holiday season, whether you are on the go, or want to linger, here are a few new and/or remodeled options for you to check out:
Kaleidoscope Juice Gainey Ranch
For those who want a quick, healthy snack on the go open 7 am to 7 pm Mon-Fri, and 7 am to 4 pm Sat and Sun..
Kaleidoscope Juice opened its fifth valley location in the shops at Gainey Ranch. Founder and owner Alexandra Maw has been serving juices and smoothies in the valley since 2008, which is hard to believe because she looks all of 20. The organic menu features cold press fruit and vegetable juices, shakes, salads, sandwiches, protein and breakfast bowls and gluten-free snacks, including its popular range of protein cookies. A new smoothie menu was recently launched with ten drinks including the Keto Meal, Royal Bee and Longevity. They recommended the Flu Shot Smoothie for me which was filled with their Flu Shot juices (turmeric, lemon, ginger, apple, oil of oregano, garlic, & cayenne pepper) along with acerola (high in antioxidants & vitamin c), some fresh fruit, hemp seeds, coconut water and dragon fruit drizzle. It was delicious and refreshing, and something I normally would not have ordered.
The 1,000 square- foot space at the north end of Gainey Village has a French Moroccan design with a feature bar and lounge seating, a large community table and a patio welcoming guests to stay or take their orders to go. I lounged a bit on the patio out front taking some photos and reveling in our glorious AZ winter days. One more thing, if you find yourself at the shops in Gainey Ranch, cross the parking lot to Oliver Smith Jewelry to see the gorgeous baubles on display. You may want to buy a present for yourself!
Kaleidoscope Juice, 8977 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale
FLINT by Baltaire
For those who would like to linger in a sexy Mid-century modern décor and crave Mediterranean inspired fare.
Valley veterans like me will recognize the old Houston’s space in the Esplanade that is the location of the latest Los Angeles transplant, FLINT by Baltaire. The team behind LA’s successful steakhouse, Baltaire, in looking for a valley location, decided to open a Mediterranean inspired-restaurant in lieu of a Baltaire valley outpost (are they intimating the valley is flooded with steak joints? I have to agree on that one). The result is impressive, a beautiful Mid-century modern space of 9,500 square feet that seats 200 hungry diners. Those seeking special event seating will love FLINT’s four unique private event areas.and 40-guest private dining room.
Award willing Chef/Partner Travis Strickland and Executive Chef Chris Mayo have crafted seasonal menus with vibrant Middle Eastern accents and farm-fresh ingredients. Think green salads, wood fired pizzas, hummus and baba ganoush with house-baked pita bread, and the pièce de resistance I understand is the whole roasted chicken served tableside. While I had a choice of sitting at the walnut-wood topped bar or in the spacious dining area, I chose a well-lit area on the al fresco terrace that boasts a retractable roof. It was an unusually rainy day, but I didn’t notice a thing as I snapped away with my pics. The food was healthy and delectable, and I highly recommend FLINT if you happen to be in the Biltmore area. Note that parking leaves much to be desired, but thankfully Uber and Lift are always an option! FLINT serves lunch and dinner daily (weekend brunch coming soon).
PS At my visit Upstairs at FLINT was not yet done, but will be an open-air rooftop lounge serving bar bites and premium cocktail with sweeping views of Piestewa Peak…I cannot wait for that!
FLINT by Baltaire, 2425 E. Camelback Rd., Phoenix
Café ZuZu, Hotel Valley Ho
For those who love retro glamour and insanely large milkshakes.
Having undergone a remodel, Café ZuZu in the Hotel Valley Ho is reopened and ready for business, with new menu items, a new brunch and a new pastry chef churning out the ever-popular Show Stopper Shake. A neon ZuZu sign beckons you to a bar and dining area that have a similar layout, but with an updated color scheme and an enhanced sound system. Out with the orange cloth chairs, and in with the terrazzo tabletops. New to the menu are smaller, shareable plates with ingredients from Valley Ho’s new 240-foot herb garden. Thankfully they still my favorite salad, the Red & Black Quinoa Spoon Salad and the Impossible Burger. I tried the new GF vegetarian Elote Salad and added some sautéed shrimp. On my list among the new plates to try are the Salmon Belly Poke and the Oxtail Pappardelle. Clarissa Robinson is the new pastry chef, and I tried her Orchard Show Stopper from November, with cinnamon apple date ice cream, miso caramel, fresh apples fries, a mini oatmeal cookie stack, gingerbread Swiss roll lollipop, and a mini maple and date donut. The December shake featured peppermint ice cream, mocha, chocolate covered espresso beans, candy canes, peppermint white chocolate popcorn, peppermint bark, a snowflake sugar cookie and was topped with an ice cream sandwich covered in peppermint. Pretty dog gone tasty. When Hubby goes with me, we spike the shake, and when the kids go with me, we order fries and dunk them in the shake. Either way, not a bad way to ring in the New Year. PS there is also a new private dining, hidden from the main dining area (and actually kind of behind it) called The Rosie Room for special events.
ZuZu at the Hotel Valley Ho, 6850 E Main St., Scottsdale
Wrigley Mansion Chef’s Table Dining Experience
For those who want the best view from any restaurant in Phoenix prepared by one of the best Chef’s in town.
If you have been really good this year, Santa just may gift you what is in my opinion one of the valley’s most stunning private dining experiences, the chef’s table at Geordie’s Restaurant at the Wrigley Mansion. After an extensive renovation, the Wrigley Mansion recently unveiled its new bar area, kitchen and chef’s table. I don’t know what is more spectacular, the sight of the new kitchen appliances or the table. I pray I was nice enough this year, as I am dying to sit at this table and watch Chef Christopher Gross prepare bananas foster table side on the gueridon.
Geordie’s Restaurant at Wrigley Mansion, 2501 E Telawa Trail, Phoenix, AZ
All photos by Marci Symington for texaztaste.com.