Just a month after we said R.I.P. to Canal, chef Joseph Gutierrez is already up and running in that space with his second of three restaurants at Scottsdale's turnover-prone SouthBridge development.
Acua opened for dinner service last Thursday, serving an Asian-French fusion menu comprised of ten small plates, ten large plates, a handful of salads, and half a dozen desserts.
Among the tapas-sized selections, there's tempura quail with candied celery, honey Chinese mustard gastrique, sweet chile garlic sambal and butter-macerated Cabrales cheese; and brown sugar-braised apple foie gras pate with jalapeno marmalade, brioche feuillette, and Anjou pear foam. Entrees run the gamut from chimichurri-lacquered tenderloin of beef with grilled Gulf shrimp, pommes dauphinoise, and yuzu kosho mojo, to chile- and coffee-crusted diver scallops with artichoke flan, sauteed spaghetti squash, and chipotle creme.
Desserts are just as cross-cultural, like Bananas foster spring rolls with Grand Marnier caramel sauce.
Gutierrez, who also owns the Italian spot Tutto (which opened last month in the former Digestif space) as well as Cin-Cin Bistro in Old Town, will be opening Tapas Papa Fritas at SouthBridge later this year, in the space originally planned to become Peter Kasperski's Mexican Standoff.