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  • Article

    Second Helpings

    Variations on a Theme: Ever since Hard Rock Cafe became an international success a generation ago, copycat theme restaurants have rushed in to nab a share of the market. In what's called the "eatertainment" business, no imitator has made as big ...

    by Howard Seftel on February 25, 1999
  • Article

    Mr. Tea

    Biltmore Afternoon Tea, Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa, 24th Street and Missouri, 955-6600. Afternoon Tea: 2:30 to 4:30 p.m., seven days a week. How come Americans drink coffee instead of tea? You can trace the answer back to 1773, when 60 men, ...

    by Howard Seftel on February 25, 1999
  • Article

    "I Am Not a Cook!"

    Nixon's, 2501 East Camelback (Shops at the Esplanade), Phoenix, 852-0900. Hours: Lunch and Dinner, Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 1 a.m.; Dinner, Sunday, 4 to 11 p.m. A grateful nation remembers its first president as the "Father of Our Countr...

    by Howard Seftel on February 18, 1999
  • Article

    Second Helpings

    Art of Cooking: Some weeks back in this space, I took a few swipes at a new book, Dining Out: Secrets From America's Leading Critics, Chefs, and Restaurateurs, by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page. I thought the level of pretension was pretty hig...

    by Howard Seftel on February 18, 1999
  • Article

    A Change of Peso - El Nopalito / Tequila's

    What kind of south-of-the-border traveler are you? Do you get on an airplane and head to a fancy resort? Do you stay where the drinking water is pure, the swimming pool is heated, the flies have been banned, all major credit cards are accepted and th...

    by Howard Seftel on February 11, 1999
  • Article

    Second Helpings

    Steakout: Do you think this is still a cow town? Judging by the number of new steak restaurants that are opening, you'd be right. The only other place on earth where cows receive such reverential worship is India. Three upscale steak houses are ...

    by Howard Seftel on February 11, 1999
  • Article

    Fare to Remember

    Bistro Provence, 8900 East Pinnacle Peak (La Mirada Plaza), Scottsdale, 473-2884. Hours: Lunch and dinner, 11 a.m. to close, seven days a week. Attention, men: Have you remembered to pencil in Valentine's Day on your calendar? Better do it now, bec...

    by Howard Seftel on February 4, 1999
  • Article

    Second Helpings

    Caveat Emptor: I've said this before, but it's worth saying again: If my e-mails, letters and telephone calls are any indication, Valentine's Day is number one when it comes to generating eating-out complaints. It makes sense. It's the second-bu...

    by Howard Seftel on February 4, 1999
  • Article

    Formica Follows Function - New Yorker Family Restaurant / SunnySide Cafe

    After an exhaustive search, I was selected to sit in for Howard Seftel during his well-earned vacation on the basis of two criteria. First, I was willing to do it. Second, and this was the clincher, I eat on a daily basis. But since a large portion o...

    by M.V. Moorhead on January 28, 1999
  • Article

    Farm Follows Function

    A James Beard award-winner, Christopher Gross has been one of this town's most accomplished and sophisticated chefs for more than a decade. His wife, Paola, is a highly credentialed wine expert. Biltmore Fashion Park is a chic, swanky mall. At m...

    by Howard Seftel on January 21, 1999
  • Article

    Second Helpings - Soupy Sales; Book Notes

    Soupy Sales: There isn't much of a soup season in the Valley of the Perpetual Sun--maybe a three-month window lasting from about Thanksgiving to the beginning of spring training. For soup lovers like me, though, 'tis the season to be jolly. A steamin...

    by Howard Seftel on January 21, 1999
  • Article

    The Mangia Event

    Al Dente's, 14850 North Frank Lloyd Wright Boulevard, Scottsdale, 657-9322. Hours: Lunch and Dinner, Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Saturday, noon to 10 p.m.; Dinner, Sunday, 4 to 9 p.m. Next year, the census takers will be fanning out ...

    by Howard Seftel on January 14, 1999
  • Article

    Second Helpings

    If You Knew Sushi: Every restaurant needs a gimmick, right? Well, one German restaurant has taken the Hooters concept way beyond the next level. According to Nation's Restaurant News, an industry trade paper, a sushi restaurant in Hanover, Germa...

    by Howard Seftel on January 14, 1999
  • Article

    Second Helpings

    Generation X Files: Are you between the ages of 25 and 36? Do you think no one cares about you? Stop feeling sorry for yourself. Some very important people care very much about you. They're the people who run the world's biggest liquor companies...

    by Howard Seftel on January 7, 1999
  • Article

    Matney Idol

    Eddie Matney's Epicurean Trio, 2398 East Camelback, Phoenix, 957-3214. Hours: Fine-Dining Room--Dinner, Tuesday through Saturday, 6 to 10 p.m; Bistro--Lunch, Monday through Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.; Dinner, Sunday through Thursday, 5 to 10:30 ...

    by Howard Seftel on January 7, 1999
  • Article

    You've Got Meal

    It's the season for fantasy. The warm glow is still with us: Family members are still talking to one another, we've got a righteous feeling about all the self-improvement resolutions we've sworn to undertake at some indeterminate future time, and...

    by Howard Seftel on December 31, 1998
  • Article

    Lunchroom Confidential - The Gallery Cafe / Express Cafe

    Would you like to have your cavities filled by a student dentist? Would you get on an airplane flown by a student pilot? Would you trust your haircut to a student barber? I get the dry heaves when a skilled dentist approaches me with dental flos...

    by Howard Seftel on December 24, 1998
  • Article

    Second Helpings - Message to Santa

    Message to Santa: Peace on Earth? Goodwill toward men? A winning PowerBall ticket? The Big Guy at the North Pole never seems to act on my personal Christmas wishes. He doesn't seem to care for my professional wishes, either. If I don't get some ...

    by Howard Seftel on December 24, 1998
  • Article

    Second Helpings

    Book Notes: I always get a laugh when people tell me I've got a glamorous job. Maybe 5 percent of my time is spent at the trough. And maybe 5 percent of that is really good eating. Believe me, the other 95 percent of my work--sitting in front of...

    by Howard Seftel on December 17, 1998
  • Article

    Mondo Carne

    Bistecca, 7014 East Camelback (Scottsdale Fashion Square), Scottsdale, 481-7800. Hours: Lunch, Monday through Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.; Dinner, Sunday through Thursday, 5 to 10 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 5 to 11 p.m. Kids scan the skies for ...

    by Howard Seftel on December 17, 1998
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