We love Scottsdale for a last minute, long weekend of r and r. Why? It’s an easy flight (for us), the dry desert clime, and there’s good food to be had in the Phoenix area. Here’s where we ate on a recent trip.
At Barrio Cafe (www.barriocafe.com) in Phoenix you’ll find interior Mexican fare and art on the walls in a minimally decorated space. We were delighted in the house margarita, mixed with Don Julio tequila and served on the rocks, and the queso fundido that came with it. Find traditional dishes like cochinita pibil and chicken-stuffed chile relleno, enchiladas and chicken mole. The relleno was exquisite, but the highlight of the evening was dessert, a cajeta-stuffed churro served with a scoop of ice cream.
Digestif (www.digestifscottsdale) is a hip, but laid back wine bar and restaurant located in downtown Scottsdale. We loved the deconstructed charcuterie plate, and admittedly never have been a big fan of head cheese, but this one changed my mind. The menu includes house-made pastas, too.
Another quick trip (and favorite food destintion) is New Orleans. We were in NOLA the day it snowed. (For a second there I thought I was in Chicago.) Lucky for us, we dined at Herbsaint Bar & Restaurant (www.herbsaint.com) the night before the snow. And let me tell you, Herbsaint has got it goin’ on in the charcuterie department. From the plate of house cured meats — bacon, soppresata, and more — to the salad of baby arugula, goat cheese and candied bacon to the duck confit with citrus gastrique over Louisiana brown rice, this meal was a home run. I’ve recreated the candied bacon salad at home and it is a new fave with guests and the fam. If you are in New Orleans anytime soon, don’t miss Herbsaint. -alyce eyster