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Carol Steele Tribute Dinner at Rancho Pinot: Menu Features C. Steele Classics and Asian Pear Belinis from Aravaipa Farms

Chrysa Robertson has a well-earned reputation as a hard-charging business woman -- and one of the best chefs in town -- and she learned from the master: Carol Steele, who set the standard for culinary goodness in metro Phoenix with C. Steele and several other businesses in the Seventies and Eighties.

See also: Carol Steele is the Godmother of the Arizona Culinary Scene See also: Slideshow of Aravaipa Farms See also: Video of Carol Steele in action:

Now Robertson's returning the favor with a tribute dinner at her own restaurant, Rancho Pinot.

The dinner will be held Sunday, September 23 at 6 p.m. at Ranch Pinot.

Robertson explains in her restaurant newsletter:

I was fortunate to have worked for Carol, on and off, for nearly 9 years. I started out dusting & stocking shelves and worked my way through the cheese department, deli, bistro, catering and on to store manager. Carol was the first person to put her trust in my abilities as she took me under her wing and taught me invaluable lessons on how to run a business. We sometimes had a love/hate relationship, but in the end, I count her as one of my most important mentors.

After nearly two decades of living in, creating and running her very special "guest ranch" in Aravaipa Canyon, Carol needs to sell her farm...soon. It takes a lot of work, and at age 75, Carol finds herself trying to do it all mostly by herself. There are boundless opportunities and possibilities for the farm. So, to that end, I am hosting a dinner at Rancho Pinot to bring together friends and fans of Carol's, to celebrate her creativity, and hopefully generate some interest in the purchase of her farm.

The menu:

aperitif ASIAN PEAR BELINI Aravaipa asian pear puree & sparkling wine

passed hors d'oeuvres MINI CROISSANT SANDWICHES Roasted turkey, dofino, avocado & champagne mustard sauce Curry chicken salad

salad CAROL'S VERSION of GREEN Romaine, celery, cucumber, peas, tomato, ricotta salata, avocado, vinaigrette

main - choose one ROASTED PORK LOIN Apricot-brandy chutney, roasted fairytale squash or CATALAN SHRIMP Sweet peppers, tomato, prosciutto, almonds, white wine on roasted garlic rice

dessert MARKETPLACE APPLE PIE Vanilla bean ice cream

Aperitif, wine, tax and gratuity are included for $80; $60 for former C. Steele employees. Reservations and pre-payment are required, and no substitutions will be made to the menu. Call 480-367-8030 to reserve your spot.

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