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Scottsdale Culinary Festival Brings the Heat This Weekend

Scottsdale Culinary Festival is happening this weekend
Scottsdale Culinary Festival is happening this weekend Scottsdale League for the Arts
Scottsdale League for the Arts is putting on the 40th Scottsdale Culinary Festival this weekend. The festival's  events are spread over two days: Saturday, April 14, from noon to 9 p.m., and Sunday, April 15, from noon to 6 p.m. There will be lots of food, booze, and music.

The festival will be held at Scottsdale Civic Center Mall. Food vendors will be split into various "districts," each with a theme. Themes include "barbecue country," "Latin hill," "Asian village," and "sweet street." The list of participating vendors stretches into the dozens. Vendors vary with the district categories, as the festival has brought in Pork on a Fork for barbecue, Roka Akor for Asian, and so on.

You can see the comprehensive list of vendors here.

A number of food-and-drink-themed events will take place during the greater festival. For most of the festival, a wine, beer, and spirits showcase called Liquid Arizona will be pouring booze. A beer garden promises 200 kinds of beer, including 20 four-ounce pours, yours for the added price of beer garden entry ($45). Local breweries like Mother Road, McFate, Huss, and Helio Basin will be there. Breweries from afar will be, too, including Alaskan Brewing and Guinness.

Other events are on tap. There will be chef cooking demos, a family zone, a teen cook-off, and what is being billed as "a popping chill zone," the intriguingly named "Tito's Handmade Vodka Stardust Lounge."

Music will fill the festival grounds. A pair of 90s bands will be headlining. Everclear and Eve6, bands that still repeat on a certain kind of back-looking radio station, will each be taking the main stage.

General admission costs $12 ($15 at the door). You should note that this is the cost of entry. Food and drink are sold separately. So are tickets to many of the ancillary events, such as the beer garden. VIP packages carry perks such as choice seating and complimentary drinks, and cost $125 ($150 at the door).

You cannot bring in pets, fireworks, or flagpoles.
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Chris Malloy, former food editor and current food critic at Phoenix New Times, has written for various local and national outlets. He has scrubbed pots in a restaurant kitchen, earned graduate credit for a class about cheese, harvested garlic in Le Marche, and rolled pastas like cappellacci stuffed with chicken liver. He writes reviews but also narrative stories on the food world's margins.
Contact: Chris Malloy