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 woman who knows her pie.
Tastemaker 81: Andrea White Andrea White made a name for herself in the Valley with the artisan savory pies she brought to farmers markets as chef and owner of Saffron Kitchen. She's done with that (for now, anyway), but after her amazing South African pop-up venture, Cycle, last year, we know she has more tricks up her sleeve, and we can't wait to see what's next. She says her next idea currently is incubating.
I arrived in Phoenix with... a Penske truck, my favorite guy and his brother (who had traveled all the way from South Africa to bring my engagement ring and to do the cross-country journey) and our dog, Zola. The big move was motivated by my dream to go to culinary school, so I also arrived with a lot of hope, excitement and nerves having given up my career in New York.
If I was sitting down to dinner for six, my five dream dining companions would be... Jamie Oliver, John Krakauer (author of Into the Wild, Into Thin Air), Terry Gross (Fresh Air host), Richard Branson, and George Clooney (not for his looks -- while great -- but more for his humanitarian work in Africa).
One place everyone who comes to Phoenix must eat is... there are so many choices, but I love Binkley's . And for someone visiting, the drive to get there is part of the entree. The food is outstanding.
One menu item this city could do without is... the entire McDonald's, BK, and Taco Bell menus.
My last meal in Phoenix would be... would not be a surprisem and it's Binkley's again, without a doubt. This restaurant has truly been a standout and is almost unbeatable, even though I've been trying!
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