Every week, there's a cornucopia of Phoenix food news, features, and reviews to report here at Chow Bella. If you're like most people, you probably just don't have the time to get to all of it. It's kind of like those burgers at Old Town Whiskey; it just won't all fit in your mouth ... or in this case, your day. So, here's a recap of some of the top stories from the week that you may have missed.
Still don't know what you're serving at your big Super Bowl party on Sunday? Urban Cookies Bakeshop has you covered -- for dessert, anyway. One flavor represents San Francisco, the other Baltimore. So if you're a 49ers fan, hopefully you love dark chocolate, red wine, and cheese. Pulling for the Ravens? Classic combo of milk chocolate and peanuts.
Available through Super Bowl Sunday, February 3, the Baltimore Smith Island Cake and San Francisco Chocolate Cheese & Wine cupcake flavors are $2.85 each or $33.17/dozen. The Ravens' tribute is based on Maryland's official state dessert, a moist yellow cake with super thin layers and fudgy chocolate icing. Urban Cookies fills it with peanut butter cream and tops it with milk chocolate frosting and crunchy salted peanuts. The San Francisco 49ers' flavor is all class: chocolate cake, Cabernet glaze inside, and honey mascarpone frosting.
-- Dominique Chatterjee
No matter if you're a fan of the San Francisco 49ers, the Baltimore Ravens, or a neutral observer, if you're attending a Super Bowl party this year, the food is what (hopefully) will make everyone cheer.
And for some parties, it's go big or go home. Like these mini-stadium platters made out of food. Awesome? Disgusting? Or maybe a little of both. You decide and let us know your favorites.
No food scores with sports fans quite like wings. Whether hot, spicy, sweet, all wings, all drumsticks, or a little of each, we've listed ten of our favorite spots for wings in the Valley (plus a few honorable mentions) that are sure to leave you cheering.
At this casual bar and restaurant with locations in Gilbert and Chandler, big, juicy wings are golden-fried in varieties of traditional (our favorite, $9.99/dozen), "Boneless Buff Bites" ($8.99/pound), and all white-meat tenders ($8.99/pound). After you pick your type, pick your flavor from choices like suicide, honey BBQ, teriyaki, and specialty sauces like the mighty El Heffe, Teakwoods' mild wing sauce with garlic, cilantro, and a bit of suicide sauce for a kick.
Best Neighborhood Bar, North Phoenix: The Loft Again
It's a good thing that the proprietors of this North Valley gin joint have a couple of large clocks hanging near the bar to remind patrons of the passage of time. Otherwise, it's likely that they might waste away the entire day huddled away inside The Loft Again.
Best Neighborhood Bar, Tempe: Baer's Den
Baer's Den used to be one of those blink-and-you'll-miss-it kind of bars, as its teeny-tiny former location tucked alongside a motel was literally about the size of a one-car garage. After moving about 200 feet down Apache Boulevard earlier this year, however, this sports and spirits paradise is now housed in bigger and much more prominent digs.
See the complete list of our picks for the Best Neighborhood Bars of 2012.
--New Times Staff
For die-hard fans, picking a favorite sports bar requires nearly as much perseverance as picking a soul mate. This is a place you'll likely endure hardship and loss and hopefully, find ultimate glory. We've prowled the Valley to find the best places for sports fanatics and casual viewers alike: Here's our list.
This Scottsdale sports bar has been around for 13 years and if you're looking for a place to bring the whole team, there's no place better than Duke's. They show nearly every game you could want to see on their 46 TVs and offer plenty of pool tables, shuffleboard and foosball. Their two patios mean plenty of breathing room for smokers and non-smokers alike and they'll even let you bring your furry friends provided you keep them on a leash. To top it off, they offer 30 salads. That's right, salads. And to keep you safe, from five to close they'll give you a lift home (within six miles) in their "no DUI ride."
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