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 actually makes us crave a trip to CityScape.
5: Stephen Jones
See also: - Blue Hound's Stephen Jones on Cooking for Steve Wynn's Wife, the Joy of Fennel Pollen, and Why Pizza's Overrated - Kentucky Fried Quail Conundrum: The Praying Monk vs Blue Hound Kitchen - Blue Hound Kitchen & Cocktails: Happy Hour Report Card
Blue Hound Kitchen & Cocktails' Top Dog and Executive Chef Stephen Jones has an impressive culinary career: he's cooked with Mark Tarbell and most recently served as the executive chef at Latilla at the Boulders Resort in Scottsdale. With a background from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Pasadena, Calif., he honed his craft across many major food-centric cities and says he fell in love with Phoenix and its abundance of quality, local crops and fellow talent. When he's not in the kitchen, you can spot Jones tending to his at-home garden or walking his rescued pit bull-lab mix, Jake, around his neighborhood.
I arrived in Phoenix with... An open mind but very apprehensive about my journey ahead...also asking myself, "Where did I just land?"
If I was sitting down to dinner for six, my five dream dining companions would be... Marie Antoinette, my mother Stephanie, my aunt Mary, Chef Michel Roux and Chef Jonathan Waxman.
One place everyone who comes to Phoenix must eat is... At Pizzeria Bianco. It has this mythical feel about it, because when people read about it in magazines and in reviews online, they read "Best Pizza in America" and are stunned because it's in Phoenix. But it IS that good, and most importantly, it's soulful.
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One menu item this city could do without is... What's great about this city is there is something for everyone. As long as the menu items are done well, there will always be someone who likes them. However, I do think originality is important and it's what I strive for at Blue Hound.
My last meal in Phoenix would be... A combination of items from some of my favorite Phoenix chefs - Justin Beckett, Kevin Binkley, Charleen Badman, Nobuo Fukuda, Kelly Fletcher or Mark Tarbell...there are so many more, too. That's the thing about Phoenix now, there are so many talented chefs cooking here and really doing it right! I'm proud and humbled to be a part of the culinary scene here.
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 70: Jason Silberschlag 69: Gina Miller 68: Cindy Gentry 67: Amy Binkley 66: Dave Anderson 65: Mark Tarbell 64: Marianne Belardi 63: Audrey Lasalle 62: Brandon Gauthier 61: Brad and Kat Moore 60: Denise Clayton 59: Nobuo Fukuda 58: Richie Moe 57: Robin Trick 56: Alberto Della Casa and Letizia de Lucia 55: Farah Khalid 54: Dave Andrea 53: Vincent Guerithault 52: Danielle Leoni 51: Stan Zawatski 50: Maya Dailey 49: Duc Liao 48: Lisa Reinhardt 47: Isam Saed 46: Greg Peterson 45: Marco Bianco 44: Mark Fratu 43: Wendell Crow 42. Barb Harris 41: Michael Perry 40: Jeff Kraus 39: Ryan Avery 38: Charleen Badman 37: Damon Brasch 36: Dwayne Allen 35: Jason Asher 34: Pamela Hamilton 33: Victoria Chavez 32: Giovanni Scorzo 31: Tim Wilson 30: Travis Nass 29: Jason Alford 28: Clint Spotleson 27: Daniel Wayne 26: Korina Adkins 25: Carla Wade Logan 24: Jeff Zimmerman 23: Gabriele Bertaccini 22: Claudio Urciuoli 21: Peter DeRuvo 20: Natalie Morris 19: Eliot Wexler 18: Sam Fox 17: Bryan Dooley 16: Bernie Kantak 15: Jim Cerreta Sr. 14: Josh Hebert 13: Michael Brown 12: Dave Johnson 11: Chrysa Robertson 10: Joe Johnston 9: Eytan Zias 8: Bob McClendon 7: Snir and Kierstin Mor 6: Francesca Bianco