Himalayan salt seared ahi tuna from LON’s at the Hermosa Inn. The dish won the 2018 Foodist Award for Best Signature Dish.

October 7, 2018

Experience AZ

Here are the 2018 Foodist Awards winners

Presented by the Arizona Restaurant Association, the votes are in for the 2018 Foodist Awards and the winners were announced October 4. Here are the categories and winners.


Best Beverage Program – Recognizing a bar or restaurant that keeps their beverage menu edgy yet approachable embracing all things beverage – cocktails, spirits, wine and beer.

• UnderTow

Best Cocktail– Raising a glass to the best cocktail made in Arizona. This beverage is an exceptional cocktail that is without a doubt delicious, garnished to perfection while pushing the limits with flavors.

• Bitter & Twisted – Ship Load of Rum

Best Arizona Wine – Raising a glass to the best wine made in Arizona – from rose to chardonnay, this wine is the best of the best from State 48.

• Dos Cabezas, Wine Works

Best Arizona Beer – Raising a glass to the best beer made in Arizona – from ales to malts, this beer is the best of the best from State 48.

• AZ Wilderness

Outstanding Food Truck – Recognizes outstanding achievement in mobile nourishment, operations and community development.

• Aioli Gourmet Burgers

Innovative Restaurant Concept – Recognizes a restaurateur or restaurant group who demonstrates that they don’t follow trends; they define them, setting the bar in restaurant operations and the overall customer dining experience.

• Binkley’s

• The Larder + the Delta

Emerging Restaurant of the Year – Honors promising up-and-comers that demonstrate exemplary talent, showcase innovation and have already distinguished themselves as pacesetters in food, beverage and service.

• Roland’s Café Market Bar

Outstanding Multiple Location Restaurant – Honors a culinary concept with more than 3 locations, demonstrating exceptional achievement and commitment to excellence in marketing, menu design and customer service.

• Flower Child 

Best Arizona Caterer – An Arizona grown catering team that provides quality dining experience at any location and exemplary service.

• Jennifer’s Catering

Uniquely Arizona – Home to some of the oldest documented food traditions, Arizona has a rich culinary past steeped in tradition. We are searching statewide for the restaurants that embrace not only the local food but are staples of the state.

• Cartwright’s Modern Cuisine

Innovative Fast Casual Dish – Honoring our fast casual segment, and the most unique dish on the menu.

• Crepe Bar – Crepe Chips

Best Signature Dish: – Honors the restaurant that quite simply does it best.

• LON’s at the Hermosa Inn, Himalayan Salt Seared Ahi 

Best Arizona made restaurant retail food product. Hats off to the tried and true recipes that we want to have available at home.

• Noble Bread – Bread

Best of the Best Food Writer – This award recognizes a writer, blogger, food critic who dedicates time, passion and energy to capturing the beauty of our industry with the written word in any form.

• Christina Barrueta, Write on Rubee

Restaurant Employee – Recognizes the front or back of house employee (non-managerial) that has set the gold standard for exemplary customer service and enhancing the overall dining experience.

• Frank D’Amato, Prado

Restaurant Manager – Recognizes the manager that has set the gold standard for exemplary customer service and leadership as well as enhancing the overall dining experience.

• Bill Parker, Lon’s at the Hermosa Inn

Top Mixologist – Honoring an individual who is behind the bar, constantly raising the bar and setting trends in the beverage scene.

• Jason Asher, Barter & Shake

Top Chef – Pays tribute to outstanding culinary excellence, breaking new ground with an innovative menu while enhancing the dining experience.

• Lisa Dahl, Dahl Restaurant Group 

Good Neighbor – Recognizes the outstanding community leadership and exceptional devotion to making a difference in our neighborhoods and community at large.

• The Joy Bus Diner

Food Pioneer – Honors a lifetime of outstanding culinary excellence that continues to educate, inspire, entertain and foster a deeper understanding of the culinary culture in Arizona.

• Christopher Gross, Geordie’s at the Historic Wrigley Mansion