May is here, and so are drink specials, culinary fundraisers, silly-but-fun national food holidays, and spring’s Arizona Restaurant Week. Valley chefs will be being competing for a good cause, while the rest of us may be downing flights of pomegranate mimosas. See you in June.
Beer for Brains Epicuriad
Harley-Davidson of Scottsdale
15656 North Hayden Road, Scottsdale
Think gourmet food, craft beer and wine, and fundraising for the Ivy Brain Tumor Center at Barrow Neurological Institute and the Brain Tumor Trials Collaborative. That’s Beer for Brains Epicuriad 2019. More than 20 Valley chefs — think Brett Vibber of Cartwright's and Tamara Stanger of Cotton & Copper — are competing with their best dishes, all for the benefit of attendees. The event goes from 6:30 to 10 p.m. on Saturday, May 4. Tickets are $49 per person.
Rare Wine Week
6000 East Camelback Road, Scottsdale
More of an upgrade than a food event, the first-ever Rare Wine Week allows dining guests at J&G Steakhouse to try exceedingly rare wines from the landmark Peter Michael Winery in Sonoma, California, with their dinner. Wines are picked by J&G Steakhouse's general manager Patrick Norton and assistant general manager and certified specialist of wine Taylor Chandler. Up the ante for $200 per person from 5 to 10 p.m. all week.
Moms and Mimosas
Dr. AJ Chandler Park
178 East Commonwealth Avenue, Chandler
From 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, May 11, you can treat Mom to a day of shopping, primping, crafting, and food and drink during Moms and Mimosas. There will be mimosas, obviously, as well as a Bloody Mary bar and brunch items like waffles, crepes, doughnuts, biscuits and gravy, breakfast burritos, burgers, and barbecue plates. General admission is $7 online in advance, $10 at the gate, and free for kids 12 and under.
National Hummus Day
When these national food holiday means free appetizers, no one is complaining. Probably why Tres Tempe is offering free orders of AZ Tepary Bean Hummus — tepary beans, QCOM olives, local feta, tomato vierge, and extra-virgin olive oil served with fresh flatbread. Other popping hummus spots include Pita Jungle, George’s Kitchen, True Food Kitchen, and many more.
National Mimosa Day
A Thursday happens to be National Mimosa Day, and things are happening. Hash Kitchen, for starters, is offering the Lights Out Mimosa — strawberry boba, strawberry puree, prosecco, strawberry shortcake, and cotton candy inside a giant light bulb glass. Anything goes! But they also have mimosa flights and craft mimosas in flavors like blueberry, pineapple, and kiwi. In addition, Morning Squeeze in Scottsdale and Tempe also has mimosa flights, this time in orange juice, pomegranate, and hibiscus.
Spring Arizona Restaurant Week
The Arizona Restaurant Association presents the 10-day Spring Arizona Restaurant Week showcasing statewide chefs and their culinary achievements through special menus and dining experiences at participating restaurants. Participating restaurants include Dorian, Prado, Buck &Rider, Hearth ‘61, Elements, Mother Bunch Brewing Co., Four Peaks Brewing Company, and more. Each eatery is featuring a three-course, prix-fixe menu ranging from $33 to $44 per person.
Choosing the Right Bourbon
5445 East Lincoln Drive, Scottsdale
Part of the Spirited Sipping Seminars, Mountain Shadows hosts the Choosing the Right Bourbon workshop from 3 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, May 18. The seminar is 30 to 45 minutes, leaving plenty of time for you to enjoy your newest creation. The class is $30 per person.
Frankly Organic Vodka Tasting
Tryst Cafe Chandler
4205 South Gilbert Road, Chandler
Liquor bottles come with labels and warnings, sure, but they never come with nutritional facts. If you’re watching your calories, or being told to drink vodka because of a low-carb thing or other reason, you still have no idea where you stand after a vodka soda. That’s why Frankly Organic Vodka putting out the first vodka bottle with a nutritional label in the United States is a big deal. Also why Tryst Café beginning to carry it is a bigger one. Frankly’s vodka is organic and gluten free, and comes in strawberry, grapefruit, pomegranate, and apple. Tasting and voting is 5 to 7 p.m. on May 21 with a $10 admission.
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Flavors of Phoenix
Westin Kierland Resort & Spa
6902 East Greenway Parkway, Scottsdale
The 28th annual Flavors of Phoenix event exhibits more than 30 of the better-known Valley chefs as kind of a culinary fundraiser for the American Liver Foundation. Founded by James Beard Award-winning chef Christopher Gross, the night promises a cocktail reception, silent auction, and multicourse dinner. The Grand Ballroom at Westin Kierland Resort & Spa will host the 2019 Flavors of Phoenix from 6 to 10:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 23. Tickets are $500.
National Burger Day
All Liberty Station American Tavern and Smokehouse locations are offering the signature Liberty Burger for $5, and The Burger for $5 from 5 to 9 p.m. But not to be out-burgered, Cold Beers & Cheeseburgers is offering a burger special for the entirety of May in celebration of National Burger Month. That starts with the Taco Burger, followed by the Kobe Burger, the Tuscany, and the Juicy Mushroom Burger. But what’s more, $1 from each of those mentioned burgers will go toward the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.
Five-Year Anniversary Party
300 West Camelback Road
Celebrate five years of Southern comfort from 3 to 10 p.m. at Southern Rail at The Newton. There will be adult sno-balls in three flavors, $5 drinks, and wine (so good thing Southern Rail is on the light rail), and food specials to boot.