Mix It Up at Home This Summer with Iconic

Summer is here, and with many of us still staying at home, it is the perfect time to hone our home mixologist skills. So, we turned to the experts at Iconic Cocktail Co. for some inspiration.

Led by owners Matt Farrow and Kaylee (soon to be Farrow) Nedley, Iconic creates handcrafted cocktail mixers. The company produces its mixers seasonally in small batches and says that its focus is fully on flavor.

“At Iconic Cocktail Co., every bottle starts with real ingredients,” the team says, “like fresh citrus, local prickly pears, or honey sourced from the Valley (just to name a few!) We’re focused on the flavor of these real ingredients, so we cut back on sugar and leave out the fake stuff. This results in a product that is low in natural pure cane sugar with a clean label. We never use high fructose corn syrup, artificial ingredients, or preservatives. Every ounce is packed with flavor so all you have to do is, just add spirit.”

The company also teams up with local winemakers, distillers, bartenders and baristas for inspiration, and Iconic was kind enough to share some of that inspiration with some summertime favorites to try at home.

To learn more about this Arizona-grown company, purchase mixers or for additional inspiration, visit iconiccocktail.com. |CST

Melo Rosé Sangria

Iconic says, “This sangria calls for our summer seasonal, Iconic Watermelon Rose Tonic. This mixer is made with fresh melons and fragrant roses, all balanced out with the right amount of quinine. To complement the rose flavor, we are using a Rosé instead of white wine. Garnished with slices of cucumber and melon balls from watermelon and Korean melon, this will be your new favorite summer sipper.”

Makes about 8 servings

1 bottle of Rosé
1 cup Iconic Watermelon Rose Tonic
¼ cup lime juice
1 12oz can sparkling water

Garnish with cucumber, melon balls, and lime wheels
Combine all in a pitcher
Garnish your glasses and serve with ice

Tiki Mule

“A new take on a Moscow Mule made with rum and a little Spiced Honey. This tropical mule is perfect for summer!”

2oz rum
1/2oz Iconic Ginga Syrup
1/2oz Iconic Spiced Honey
1/2oz lime juice
2-4 pieces of pineapple
Splash of sparkling water

Muddle pineapple and lime juice in a shaker
Add Ginga Syrup, Spiced Honey, lime, and rum. Shake all with ice
Double strain into a stainless steel or mule mug over fresh ice
Garnish with a pineapple wedge and leaf

A Walk in Oaxaca

“Sharing one of the three recipes we created with our friends at Provision Coffee!”

1.5oz Corazon Tequila
.5oz Yuu Baal Mezcal
1oz Iconic Prickly Pear Sour
.25oz Creme De Violet
.5oz Lemon juice

Shake with ice
Strain into a chilled coupe
Garnish with a lemon twist

Photos courtesy of Iconic Cocktail Co.

Cartel Coffee Lab Heads North with Two New Phoenix Locations

The longstanding Tempe-based coffee purveyor, Cartel Coffee Lab, known for sourcing and roasting some of the best coffee from around the world is launching new locations in Paradise Valley and Uptown Phoenix. Located at the northeast intersection of Tatum and Shea, the Paradise Valley location is scheduled for a grand opening Dec. 20 . (Open holiday hours 7am–3pm through Christmas Eve; 6am–8pm regular hours.) Visitors can look forward to free coffee all day and a chance for one winner to receive free coffee for a year. The 1,200 square foot Paradise Valley location features a state of the art La Marzocco Linea PB espresso machine, draft cold brew and Chemex pour overs of rotating single origin coffees.

As a part of its continuing partnership with boutique hospitality brand ARRIVE Hotels, Cartel will be opening inside ARRIVE’s upcoming hotel at Fourth Avenue and Camelback in Uptown Phoenix in 2020. This will be the third in a series of successful cafe/hotel partnerships after locations in Palm Springs and Austin.

“We’ve always been cautious when it comes to choosing locations or partners; both of these new cafes represent a lot of consideration and these are two communities we are excited to grow with,” said Jason Silberschlag, owner and co-founder of Cartel.

Husband and wife Jason and Amy Silberschlag began Cartel 12 years ago with a mobile cart, which will now have expanded into 10 retail locations across three states supported by their two Arizona roasteries in Tempe and Tucson. “From day one, it’s been about neighborhood cafe culture first and foremost,” said Amy. “We can’t wait to make new friends in North Phoenix!”

It isn’t just the Silberschlags who are excited.

“I’m personally thrilled that they’ll be just across the street from me,” says Woo Jonathon, general manager of neighboring restaurant The Covenant. “I’m always up for more local business in Paradise Valley.”

The name Cartel Coffee Lab was inspired by oil cartels; instead of stifling competition, Cartel has an ambitious goal to band together like-minded coffee producers and professionals to drive customer appreciation for hard work and quality. To date, Cartel partners with 110 rotating coffee farms spread across the globe who are guaranteed to be paid 30 percent to 150 percent above their costs, far above pricing set by Fair Trade.

Through the years, Cartel has received recognition from the likes of Alton Brown, Vogue and Food & Wine as a gold standard in specialty coffee craft and service. The secret is in their 90 percent retail focus, which has allowed them to prioritize the experience of the end user in all their decisions.

For additional information, visit www.cartelcoffeelab.com or find Cartel Coffee Lab on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

Photos courtesy of Cartel Coffee Lab

Local Health & Wellness Company Brings Organic Juice and ‘High Vibe’ Foods to New Scottsdale Location — Kaleidoscope Juice Opens Oct. 17

Kaleidoscope Juice announced that it will open its newest outlet at The Shops Gainey Village located at 8977 North Scottsdale Road in Scottsdale Thursday, Oct. 17. To celebrate the grand opening, guests will receive a free fresh press juice with any purchase Thursday through Sunday, Oct. 20. Plus, samples of other menu items such as avocado toast, smoothies and protein cookies will be offered.

Kaleidoscope is proud to source the best organic ingredients, locally when able, to offer healthy food fast. Locally owned and operated since 2008, Kaleidoscope now has five locations. In addition to this new location, the company has plans for further expansion and will be opening another location in the coming months.

The new sun-filled 1,000 square- foot space at Gainey Village will have a French Moroccan design and feature bar and lounge seating, a large community table and a patio welcoming guests to stay or take their orders to go. A countertop fresh press juice machine will also be a new addition allowing team members to press juices to order throughout the day. The shop will be open daily from 7am to 7pm.

“We are delighted to open this new, beautiful location in the neighborhood where I started the company delivering juices to people’s homes,” said Alexandra Maw, founder and owner of Kaleidoscope Juice. “We believe in the vibrancy of Kaleidoscope and look forward to sharing our passion for healthy, healing foods with the Scottsdale community.”

Kaleidoscope’s mission is to nourish and heal through nutrition. The company shares that its recipes and ingredient combinations are science-based and target specific needs or deficiencies. The 100 percent organic menu features cold press fruit and vegetable juices, shakes, salads, sandwiches, protein and breakfast bowls and gluten-free snacks, including its range of protein cookies. A new smoothie menu was recently launched with 10 drinks including the Keto Meal, Royal Bee and Longevity.

Brook McGregor, co-owner and COO and master’s degree candidate in Human Nutrition and Functional Medicine added, “We are excited to expand our menu outside the normal fruit and vegetable combinations. Our new smoothies are [intentionally] crafted providing a myriad of healthy fat compositions, hormone maintenance blends and cognitive support.”

For more information, visit kaleidoscope.love.

Arizona Taco Festival Returns for its 10-Year ‘Taco-versary’

The 10th Annual Arizona Taco Festival, sponsored by the City of Scottsdale, is celebrating a decade of tacos by offering more taco amusement and milestone munchies, including more than 50 taco teams dishing out creative $3 steak, pork, seafood, veggie and even vegan tacos, as they compete for $10,000 and bragging rights in this esteemed taco competition.

The festival will commence Oct. 12–13 at its new, larger WestWorld of Scottsdale location. The taco playground will expand and take over 300 acres, featuring the fan-favorites, plus a whole new line-up of entertainment during the two-day festival.

New festivities at the 10th Annual Arizona Taco Festival include:

  • Lucha Libre Arena and Lucha Bar: Wrestlers slam down under a structured tent, and bleacher seating with its own bar and band with a Tijuana meets Quentin Tarantino vibe.
  • Taco Society Culture Tent: Taco-centric fashion, art, photography, music and more to get into the full taco spirit, mind, body and soul, co-curated by local artist Gennaro Garcia.
  • Holy Hot Sauce: This expo tent will feature 100 hot sauces to sample, buy, and vote for the People’s Choice award. All hot sauces will be curated by Vic Clinco, the owner of the largest private collection of hot sauces in the world.
  • Day of the Dead Wedding: For one lucky couple who gets hitched on the main stage Day of the Dead style and then celebrates with their wedding party in a private cabana.
  • Tequila Expo: Guests will be able to sample from over 100 types of tequila and other agave-based spirits. Expo tickets are $20, and hours are from noon to 5pm.
  • Technicolored Instagrammable cooking demo hosted by AZFoodie

Returning festival favorites include a solid line-up of over 50 taco vendors including Arizona’s top taquerias, taco food trucks, and taco titans will bring the best of the best tacos for $3 each; the Main Taco Competition, where local chefs battle for the best taco titles as well as $10,000 in cash prizes, trophies and bragging rights; interactive photo booths and photo experiences; Hot Chili Pepper eating contest; Mucho Taco Eating contests where 10 strong stomached volunteers see how many tacos they can consume in a short amount of time; and the Ay! Chihuahua Beauty Pageant where over 20 chihuahuas in vibrant costumes strut their stuff with eccentric owners in tow.

The festival is open Saturday, Oct. 12, and Sunday, Oct. 13, from 11am to 7pm. One-day general admission will begin at $10 per ticket in honor of the 10th anniversary for the first 2,019 ticket buyers and increase to $15 per ticket. Military members will receive half off their ticket. The VIP Cantina will offer chef curated food, private bars, entertainment, private bathrooms, seating for $135 per day. Tickets are only sold online on http://www.aztacofestival.com and food and beverages cost extra. Arizona Taco Festival is a cashless event.

WestWorld of Scottsdale is located at 16601 North Pima Road, Scottsdale. For an up-to-date lineup of 10-year anniversary festivities, restaurants, spirits and entertainment, visit www.aztacofestival.com.

Downtown Phoenix Oktoberfest Returns Sept. 28

Downtown Phoenix Oktoberfest returns for a second year with live music, a brat eating contest and, of course, plenty of beer. Hosted by HDE Agency, the 21 and over event will be held in Civic Space Park Saturday, Sept. 28, from 3pm to 9pm.

This year, the event will feature plenty of beer and traditional German food such as bratwurst, weisswurst, currywurst, soft pretzels, schnitzel, spatzel and sauerkraut. The Downtown Phoenix Oktoberfest brings authentic fare from local restaurants and food purveyors including Eur Haus food truck, Brat Haus, Copper Blues and Hooters.

“The Downtown Phoenix Oktoberfest is a chance for everyone to be German for the day,” said owner of HDE Agency, Landon Evans. “Oktoberfest is a long-running tradition in Germany and we love bringing it to Cityscape providing an authentic experience, live entertainment and plenty of fun.”

This year’s event will feature live music from Funkhaus Brass Band, Arizona’s new high energy New Orleans style band. A partnership with Huss Brewing will ensure local liquid gold will be flowing plus eight German beers will be on tap including Paulaner Oktoberfest Wiesn, the most popular beer served at the German Oktoberfest and Hofbrau Lager. Additionally, servers from Hooters will be on site serving up food and drinks to guests and they will host a championship stein holding contest and a Beer Maid contest. A brat eating contest will test attendee’s enthusiasm for sausages. Corn hole, Jenga, Ladder Ball and more will also provide entertainment for festival goers.

A portion of the proceeds from the event will benefit ICM Food & Clothing Bank. Started in 1983 ICM has been supporting working poor families with basic human needs including food, clothing, toiletries, diapers, and more. The nonprofit is fueled by the support of the community and volunteers. Learn more at www.icmaz.org.

Single tickets to the event are $10 online and $15 day of. Admission includes access to the festival grounds, entertainment, games and contests. Food and beverages are sold separately.

Civic Space Park is located at 424 North Central Avenue in Phoenix. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.dtphxoktoberfest.com.


Celebrate Arizona Brews at Real, Wild & Woody

From barrel-aged brews to specialty casks, the Phoenix Convention Center will welcome a variety of fresh flavors and seasonal specialties poured by more than 75 of the Southwest’s best craft brewers, and with over 350 craft beers, there is something for everyone at this year’s Real, Wild & Woody Beer Festival

Join the Arizona Craft Brewers Guild July 27 as it celebrates 30 years of craft beer in Arizona with a festival that includes, brews, bites, live original music, rock wall and a gamer’s paradise. The indoor summer festival will again prove a great spot for sampling specialty casks, rich and unique flavor combinations and other never-before-sipped brews from some of the industry’s best.

Real, Wild & Woody will also again partner with some of the region’s top restaurants to provide complementing small bites for festival goers.

Phoenix Convention Center is located at 100 North 3rd Street in Phoenix and is easy to get to from downtown light rail stations. Lyft is also offering event discount codes. For tickets or additional information, call 480.365.9000 or visit www.realwildandwoody.com.

Learn more about the Arizona Craft Brewers Guild at www.chooseazbrews.com.

Taco Guild Announces New Executive Chef and Transformed Menu

Taco Guild’s new executive chef, Diego Bolanos, wants to bring a unique vision and approach to the restaurant by debuting 23 new dishes. His redesign of the menu shows a commitment to bringing internationally-inspired flavors using locally-sourced ingredients.

Chef Bolanos hails from Costa Rica. He began cooking almost 20 years ago and has spent time working in acclaimed kitchens including the Four Season in La Jolla, the Del Mar Market in San Diego and with Chef Lisa Dahl in Sedona to open her new concept Mariposa Latin Grill. Chef Bolanos takes the helm of Taco Guild with a team of talented cooks, many who also have roots in Latin America.

Named one of the best Mexican restaurants in the country by Travel Channel’s “Food Paradise,” and identified by “Travel + Leisure” as having one of the best tacos in America, Chef Bolanos seeks to maintain an elevated approach to the Mexican heart of the restaurant, but also combine different cuisines to create distinctive dishes that helped put Taco Guild on the map.

“Taco Guild’s menu has always been rooted in the Old and New World,” said Chef Bolanos. “My team and I want to utilize our years of culinary knowledge and honor the soul and root of our cultures with classic cooking techniques and flavors. But we also believe that a taco is an international dish — something that combines different cuisines. Our approach is to highlight international influences using the best ingredients, so our guests have an exceptional experience.”

Many of the fan favorite dishes including the Grilled Romaine Lettuce salad and the coffee braised beef taco remain on the menu however, 23 new dishes were added including:

  • Street Corn Trio — Grilled corn on the cob served three ways. Topped with habanero butter, chipotle aioli and Cotija cheese. Honey tequila cinnamon butter and traditional with butter, sour cream, Cotija cheese and Tajin. Single $4.50, trio $12.50
  • Grilled Fruit Salad — Baby arugula, grilled oranges, mangos and apples, fresh berries, pepitas, fresh mozzarella and ancho balsamic dressing. $12
  • Tostones — Plantain cakes with bean dip, pico de gallo, Cotija cheese, chipotle garlic aioli and choice of carnitas, chicken or coffee-braised beef. $9
  • Pork Chicharon Taco — Braised pork belly, tomatillo puree, yucca root, Sriracha cilantro aioli, pico de gallo, Cotija cheese and cilantro. $5.50
  • Chocolate Chip & Serrano Cookie — Fresh baked Serrano pepper chocolate chip cookie served with banana dulce de leche gelato. $9
  • Lobster Taco — Sautéed lobster in a habanero butter and wine sauce, pico de gallo, cilantro lime cream, Oaxaca cheese and fried avocado. $7
  • Roasted Artichoke Taco — Artichoke hearts, mushrooms, beets, fromage frit and avocado cream. $6
  • Cubano Taco — Braised pork, ham, Swiss cheese and honey Dijon mustard sauce topped with pickle chips. $5.50
  • Korean Fried Chicken Taco — Fried chicken, pickled cabbage, Korean pepper sauce, cilantro and radish. $6
  • Roast Leg of Lamb Taco — Slow roasted leg of lamb, yogurt mint sauce, cucumber, cilantro, radish, chimichurri and fennel. $7
  • Taco Berries — Fresh mixed berries, caramel sauce, cinnamon whipped cream. $5

Diners can enjoy these new dishes set in Taco Guild’s beautiful dining room that is flanked in original stained-glass windows, original wooden beamed ceiling, beautiful murals and other elements from the historic church.

Taco Guild serves lunch and dinner during the week with daily happy hour specials. Brunch is served Saturdays and Sundays from 10am to 1pm. Taco Guild is located at 546 East Osborn Road. For more information, visit www.tacoguild.com.

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