From now 'til we publish the 2012 edition of Best of Phoenix, New Times and Chow Bella present 100 Tastemakers -- Valley residents who make the cut in our culinary scene. Some you'll know; for others, it'll be a first introduction (but likely not the last). While you're here, check out our 100 Creatives on Jackalope Ranch.
Today: a guy who roasts in Phoenix -- year-round.
Tastemaker 70: Jason Silberschlag
Tucson native Jason Silberschlag graduated from the University of Arizona with a degree in philosophy. He says his love for community and quality led him and his wife, Amy, to open Cartel Coffee Lab in January 2008. He has since enjoyed developing his palate by traveling to coffee-growing regions to participate in judging coffee by a process called "cupping," with various cup-of-excellence programs. And he's opened several more Cartel locations. Cartel also distributes to many local coffee shops and restaurants. Chances are, if you drink a good cup of Joe in this town, Silberschlag had a hand in the beans.
I arrived in Phoenix with... a strong work ethic and passion for entrepreneurship.
If I was sitting down to dinner for six, my five dream dining companions would be... Duane Sorensen (Stumptown Coffee), Chris Bianco, Charles Eames (designer), Al Beadle (architect), and Sam Calagione (Dogfish Head).
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One place everyone who comes to Phoenix must eat is... St. Francis.
One menu item this city could do without is... non-microbrewed beer and Italian-style coffee.
My last meal in Phoenix would be... a carne asada burrito and a Sonoran-style hot dog from Micky's Hot Dogs in Mesa.
The Tastemakers so far: 100: Tracy Dempsey 99: Craig DeMarco 98: Lara Mulchay 97: M.J. Coe 96: Betty Alatorre de Hong 95: Eric Schaefer 94: Hanna Gabrielsson 93: Shinji Kurita 92: Silvana Salcido Esparza 91: Mike Pitt 90: Christina Barrueta 89: Christopher Gross 88: Jan Wichayanuparp and Helen Yung 87: DJ Fernandes 86: Cullen Campbell 85: Chris Lee 84. Gwen Ashley Walters 83: Tony Morales 82: Lylah Ledner 81: Andrea White 80: Lori Hashimoto 79. Mrs. White 78: Eugenia Theodosopolous 77: Lou & Lovey Borenstein 76: Anthony Patafio 75: Carl Seacat 74: Sacha Levine 73: Sharon Salomon 72: Johnny Chu 71: Susie Timm Follow Chow Bella on Facebook and Twitter and Pinterest.