Valley Epicurean Fests To Feast Upon


Food FestivalsBy Kathryn M. Miller ~ Arizona’s restaurants will post sales just under $11 billion this year and will create over 41,000 jobs over the next decade, according to the Arizona Restaurant Association. A strong industry is welcome news for the state – more so for diners who benefit from the diverse population of restaurants. Valley residents can enjoy food and drink from award-winning chefs, winemakers, brewers and dining destinations daily, but there is no better way to sample a wide variety of local delights than at one of the many food (and drink) fests that have become staples to area epicureans.

Kicking off the fall season is the 2014 Taste of the Biltmore (www.tasteofthebiltmore.com) October 2, Arizona Taco Festival (see page 6) and the Scottsdale Sizzlin’ Showdown Super-Regionals of the World Food Competition (www.worldfoodchampionships.com), which will feature up to 60 competitors facing-off in one of three culinary competition categories, October 25-26, as part of the Bentley Scottsdale Polo Championships: Horses and Horsepower.

PBS Eight’s Great Grill Fest (www.azpbs.org/grillfest) takes place November 2. Enjoy cooking demonstrations by PBS personalities and local chefs, samplings from Valley restaurants, wine and craft beer tastings and live entertainment.

Chiles and Chocolate returns to Desert Botanical Garden (http://www.dbg.org) November 7-9. Indulge in gourmet chocolates, zesty salsas and other unique Southwestern treats.

Cooks & Corks (www.cooksandcorks.org), benefiting Scottsdale League for the Arts, returns to the Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale at Troon North November 14. This outdoor event spotlights top local chefs and a world-class collection of winemakers accompanied by fine spirits and craft beers.

The Arizona Wine Growers Association (www.azwinefestivalatthefarm.com) invites residents to shake hands with and drink the wine of Arizona’s own grape farmers and wine producers in the picturesque setting of Phoenix’s historic The Farm at South Mountain November 14-15 at its sixth annual festival.

Coming up early next year are the Street Eats Food Truck Festival, Arizona Cocktail Week, Great Arizona Beer Festival, Arizona Restaurant Week, Devoured Phoenix Culinary Classic and Scottsdale Culinary Festival, to name a few. Bon appétit! |CST

 

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