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Chefs, What Are Your Favorite Road Trip Snacks?

Courtesy Warner Brothers' "National Lampoon's Vacation"

Welcome to Chow Bella's Bites & Dishes, where Valley chefs and restaurateurs respond to a question New Times food critic Laura Hahnefeld has on her mind. Have a question you'd like to ask? E-mail laura.hahnefeld@newtimes.com.

Chefs, What Are Your Favorite Road Trip Snacks?
Courtesy Warner Brothers' "National Lampoon's Vacation"

Part of the fun of road trips is packing up the jalopy with food to munch on along the way.

Are Valley chefs any different than the rest of us when it comes to what snacks get to hitch a ride? There are the standard salty and sweet picks to be sure, but which ones in particular? And poached shrimp? That might be a new one.

Here are a few of their answers.

See also: - Chefs, What's on Your Summer Reading List? - Is it Ever Okay Not to Tip?

Chef Jeff Pilditch, Bistro 24

I have four essentials when I'm on the go: trail mix, beef jerky, whole fruit, and Blueberry Red Bull. The ultimate power snacks for any trip.

Josh Hebert, Chef and Owner, Posh

The ultimate finger food is poached shrimp. Put them in the console of the car on ice and snack away. Figs, dates, and a big bowl of olives are great munchies, too. And Swedish Fish, of course.

Chef Steven "Chops" Smith, Searsucker, Scottsdale

Blue Diamond Smoked Almonds, Butterfingers, any potato chip that is fried (baked is lame), Five-Hour Energy Drink, beef jerky, and sparkling Voss -- I like the tiny bubbles and I'm on a diet.

Gina Buskirk Chef and Owner, Gina's Homemade

Beef jerky, Pringles, Manchego slices, a portobello mushroom and roasted red pepper sandwich on whole grain Mediterranean bread, and Gatorade. It looks weird seeing it in writing, but that's it, every time. 

Guido Saccone, Chef and Partner, Cibo

I have fond memories of me as a little boy going on vacation with my parents and siblings. My mom would always make a pasta e frittata, a savory fried spaghetti cake. I always make that for long trips while the rest of the family eats PB&Js, something that in Italy is unheard of, but that I'm slowly getting used to.

Michael O'Dowd, Chef and Owner, Renegade MOD

Back in the day it was bologna smashed sandwiches. Now, it's more about "balance" with raw, farm-plucked veggies, cheese bites, and charcuterie (scented with a few pounds of Heath bars) and grapes.

Chef Chris Nicosia, Sassi

Gotta have lots of jerky to make it through a road trip. Jerkey and cigars.

Bryan Dooley, Chef and Owner, Bryan's Black Mountain Barbecue

A cooler full of cheese, sausages, and pickled stuff and I'm a happy guy. 

Chef Massimo De Francesca, Taggia

Red Bull, Starbucks' double shot cold espresso, and chocolate/peanut butter protein bars.

Chef Eric Ramirez, Little Cleo's

Sunflower seeds, a bottle of water, and a bag of Doritos. Maybe a bottle of Coke too.

Chef Gregory Wiener, Top of the Rock

Smart Water, beef jerky, Twix Peanut Butter - love those things.

Chef Bobby Garcia, Fired Up Grill

Planters trail mix, granola, and M&M's peanut.

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