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Chef Lee Hillson to Prepare "Inaugural Long Table Guest Chef Dinner" at Hidden Meadow Ranch

Scottsdale Chef Lee Hillson will be working alongside Chef Ben Mulé for an “inaugural long table guest chef dinner” at Hidden Meadow Ranch.

“I am excited for the opportunity to not only prepare my favorite dishes at Hidden Meadow Ranch, but also to serve guests sitting at one of the longest tables I’ve ever worked,” Hillson said.  “I have always loved Hidden Meadow Ranch, so I’m planning to bring a little bit of home with me to share with guests at this special place.

Hillson, Executive Sous Chef of The Phoenician, was a challenger on season 6 of Food Network’s Iron Chef, the same season as noteworthy culinary artists Guy Rubino and Jamie Oliver.

The four-course dinner will feature a “rustic Mediterranean-inspired cuisine,” and starts at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 10.

It will be hosted outside on one continuous long table overlooking the Meadow Pond, and reservations are required.

Hidden Meadow Ranch is located just north of Greer, Ariz., tucked away in the White Mountains.

Arizona Cocktail Week logo

Arizona Cocktail Week To Kick Off February 16 At Hotel Valley Ho

Charlotte Voisey

Save money. Help out a nonprofit.

This is exactly what participants of Arizona Cocktail Week will have the chance to do for one week in February (February 16-22, 2013) — and it’s a statewide event.

For those interested in sampling cocktails, learning from nationally renowned mixologists and helping the community, purchase an Arizona Cocktail Week Tony Abou-Ganimwristband for $10, and take part it in all. Proceeds from the wristbands will benefit the Careers through Culinary Arts Program (C-CAP) Arizona, a nonprofit organization that works with public schools across the country to provide career opportunities in the foodservice industry for underserved youth through culinary arts education and employment.

Wearing the wristband guarantees half off drinks at participating restaurants and bars throughout the state, for the entire week. The wristband will also give Yelpers Steve Olsonaccess to dining specials and exclusive taxi deals to ensure everyone gets home safely.

But that’s not all. Wristband wearers will also receive RACK alerts (Random Acts of Cocktail Kindness), sent out via social media and email, informing attendees of special giveaways and pop-up events/bars, which will spring up around town headed by mixologists from Los Angeles, New York City and St. Louis.Angus Winchester

Arizona Cocktail Week will kick off with the Cocktail Carnival at the Hotel Valley Ho. Here, you’ll find the latest innovations from the nation’s top mixologists and bartenders, including booze-infused cotton candy.

Other notable events happening during AZCW:

  • Tony Abou-Ganim, author of “The Modern Mixologist: Contemporary Classic Cocktails” and “Iron Chef: America” contestant will host a ladies-only cocktail seminar.
  • Steve Olson, Wine & Spirits writer for Bon Appétit Magazine and cocktail consultant to the top restaurants in the country (Grammercy Tavern, Mayflower Inn) will host a cognac seminar and pub crawl.
  • Two other confirmed mixologists include Charlotte Voisey, company mixologist with William Grant & Sons USA and recognized by the James Beard Foundation in 2009 for contribution to mixology; and Angus Winchester, Wine Enthusiast’s 2012 Brand Ambassador/Mixologist of the Year.
  • This year will launch a Light Rail Pub Crawl in Phoenix.

Schedule for the week:

Saturday, Feb. 16

  • Cocktail Carnival

Sunday, Feb. 17

  • Bloody Bar
  • Seminars
  • Pool Party Fiesta
  • Imbibe n’ Dine

Monday, Feb. 18

  • Bloody Bar
  • Seminars
  • Artisanal Happy Hour
  • Last Slinger Standing
    Cocktail Competition

Tuesday, Feb. 19

  • Imbibe n’ Dine
  • To Have and Have Another: A Hemingway Cocktail Companion Event

Wed., Feb. 20

  • Light Rail Safari

Thursday, Feb. 21

  • Imbibe n’ Dine

Friday, Feb. 22

  • Last Call Closing Party

For more information about Arizona Cocktail Week, including the schedule of events for the week, visit arizonacocktailweek.com.

 
Arizona Cocktail Week
When: February 16-22, 2013
Where: View a list of participating restaurants/bars
Cost: $10 wristbands

New Times Street Eats Food Truck Festival

Foodies Unite! New Times' Street Eats Food Truck Festival At Salt River Fields

New year, new line-up of food festivals. Up first: the New Times Street Eats Food Truck Festival at Salt River Fields on January 12 & 13, 2013.

But be aware: The Street Eats Food Truck Festival has more than just a few food trucks available for your choosing. At this two-day event, you’ll also find a wine lounge, a special VIP tent, several bars, a kids zone, eating contests (hot dog, pie and Twinkie), cooking demonstrations, live music and special guests.

Celebs & demos

Chef Geoffrey ZakarianAnyone who watches The Food Network and the Travel Channel will recognize these two special guests: Chef Geoffrey Zakarian and Adam Richman.

On Saturday, Chef Zakarian, Iron Chef on The Food Network’s hit show “Iron Chef America” and a judge on The Food Network’s cooking challenge “Chopped,” will perform a one-hour public cooking demonstration from 1-2 p.m.

On Sunday, attendees can check out a one-hour cooking demonstration by Adam Richman, host of “Man vs. Food,” “Man vs. Food Nation” and “Adam Adam RichmanRichman’s Best Sandwich in America” on the Travel Channel. The demonstration will also take place from 1-2 p.m.

The Sub-Zero Wolf Cooking Demo Stage will also include the following demonstrations:

Saturday
12-1 p.m.: Top of the Rock – Chef Gavino Borquez
12-1 p.m.: The Food Network’s Geoffrey Zakarian
2-3 p.m.: Uncle Sal’s/The Side Door/The Blind Pig – Chef Jimmy Molinari
3-4 p.m.: Pure Sushi Bar – Chef Eddie Aguilar
4-5 p.m.: Wildhorse Grille at Talking Stick Golf Course – Chef Patrick Karvis

Sunday
12-1 p.m.: TheHopelessHousewife.com Chef Erika Monroe-Williams & Arizona Diamondbacks Third-base Coach Matt Williams
12-1 p.m.: Travel Channel’s Adam Richman
2-3 p.m.: PS Catering Arizona – Chef Chris Peil & Diane Stern
3-4 p.m.: Certified Holistic Health Coach – Chef Michele Rusinkp

Spend a little extra dough

Why merely watch Chef Zakarian and Richman when you spend spend a little one-on-one time with them? Spend the extra cash for admission into the LTB Concepts VIP Tent. Admission includes not only includes light appetizers, $20 in food tickets, six alcoholic drinks and unlimited soda and water, but also a VIP Meet & Greet with Chef Zakarian on Saturday and a VIP Meet & Greet with Richman on Sunday.

Wine time

Want wine? Head to the Stark Raving Un-Wine-D Lounge for eight wine tastings with food pairings.

Here’s a rundown of what to expect at the Un-Wine-D Lounge:

  • Paired with assorted cheeses and crackers:
 Chandon Rośe
 and Moët Ice
  • Paired with caprese skewer:
 Uppercut  Sauvignon Blanc
 and Chalone Chardonnay
  • Paired with crustini with tomato relish:
 A BY Acacia Pinot Noir
 and Stellina de Notte Chianti
  • Paired with beef chimi churi:
 Terrazas Malbec
 and Dynamite Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Paired with shrimp shooters:
 A by Acacia Chardonnay
 and Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc
  • Paired with beef empanada:
 BV Napa Cabernet
 and Numanthia Termes
  • Paired with cheesecake bits:
 Stellina di Notte Prosecco
 and Clicquot Demi Sec
  • 

Paired with toasted marshmallow and chocolate bars:
 Rosenblum Desiree
 and Newton Merlot Unfiltered

Beer, please

As if it couldn’t get any better, the Street Eats Food Truck Festival will even include four bars, including Whiskey River Saloon, Upper Crust Pizza Patio & Wine Bar, Majerle’s Sports Grill, Firehouse and a mobile bar from the National Taco Association.

For more information about each bar’s featured products and mixed drinks, visit saltriverfields.com.

Food trucks, galore

From frybread, hot dogs and noodles to pizza, kettle corn, burgers and traditional Native American food, nearly every type of food will be present.

For the full list of food trucks, visit saltriverfields.com.

Ticket prices

Sold yet? Here’s what you can expect to fork up at the door:

  • $10 General Admission Tickets / Children 12 and under free
  • $35 Un-Wine-d Lounge
  • $60 LTB Concepts VIP Tent

For more information about the Street Eats Food Truck Festival, including the line-up of live entertainment, visit saltriverfields.com.

New Times Street Eats Food Truck Festival
When: January 12-13, 2013 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. (each day)

Where: Salt River Fields at Talking Stick
7555 N. Pima Rd., Scottsdale
Tickets: Purchase tickets here