Yes, Phoenix -- this city will come back to life pretty soon. Things feel slow right now, but at least there's a big culinary event right around the corner, ushering a whole season of activities for food fanatics.
Phoenix Cooks! is the shindig to put on your calendar. Scheduled for Saturday, September 5, it's one of this area's most well-rounded culinary events.
As you'd expect, there will be tastings from more than 50 local restaurants at the "grand marketplace," along with kitchenware vendors. There will also be a limited-availability "Dine Around," where guests will eat one course and have a drink at each of four restaurant stops -- Zinc Bistro, deseo, North, and Tommy Bahama's Tropical Cafe.
There's an education component, too, with 16 different 30-minute cooking classes scheduled throughout the day (early registration is strongly recommended) from some of the Valley's brightest talent. Lee Hillson (T. Cook's), Mel Mecinas (Four Seasons Resort), and Anthony DeMuro (Different Pointe of View) are among the featured chef instructors.
And on three different kitchen stages, look for cooking demonstrations by a variety of Phoenix Cooks! chefs, hosted by assorted media personalities.
There will be a charity raffle taking place throughout the day, with 100 percent of the proceeds going to Phoenix Children's Hospital.
Everything takes place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Westin Kierland Resort. Tickets are $75, classes are an additional $8, and the Dine-Around is $125.