Monday, April 2, 2012

Taste It Tours

 I love culinary tours! You have an opportunity to check out lots of different restaurants and try different foods. There hasn't been any in Phoenix until just the last few months. Taste it Tours started up and offered a Groupon. I was all over that. So my niece, Keegan and I, checked it out.
They had us start at Province. This is the new restaurant in the downtown Wyndham. It's a beautiful space. As usual, I was so interested in tasting the food, I almost forgot to take any photographs until we were almost done. I got better as we went.
 Taste it Tours says they choose resturants that are about fresh, local ingredients. There are other places downtown I would have liked to have tried, but we had fun. Province made us two different flatbreads with two different types of homemade sausage, chorizo and linguica ( a Portuguese chicken sausage). The linguica also had roasted eggplant.
 There was also a goat cheese fondue with homemade pretzel chips. I liked putting a dab of it on the flatbread. And small little balls of ground hominy and cauliflower, rolled in bread crumbs and fried, served with an aioli. I really liked those.
The quanitity was pretty good. Sometimes you barely get a taste, but they were pretty generous here. For those who paid extra, there was a cocktail option.
 In additon to the food, we did a little bit of a downtown walking tour of Phoenix. I learned a few things. This is the lobby of the Security Building, built by John Heard in 1928. I know there is a penthouse. You can kind of see it from the ground. I would love to check it out. It's owned by the city of Phoenix and we aren't allowed in. :(/
 We walked through the lobby of Hotel San Carlos and got to hear about the ghosts, celebrities and gangsters. Kind of fun.

 She pointed out Hanny's and talked about it, but she said their hours weren't conducive to their afternoon tours. I would love to go back there and try it out. It's an old department store that is now a restaurant.
 We did end up at Tom's Tavern. Tom's started in the 20's in the old city morgue. They have changed locations several times and are now recently reopened and remodeled. They have very convivial and enjoyable staff. I know that the rest of our group really enjoyed the cocktails there. Keegan and I enjoyed the pulled pork slider with homemade pickle. They gave us coupons to come back and try their poppers which sound amazing. They smoke all their own meat there, including bacon, which they wrap around the poppers.
 The old downtown courthouse, which now houses various offices and will someday have a musuem open to the public.
 Walked by City Hall and the Orpheum. I never realized that the Orpheum was actually connected to City Hall.
 We went to Seamus McCaffrey's. I have to say this was a disappointment for me. I was glad to finally be there, I have always heard about it. The shepherd's pie was not very good. I don't know if it was their version, or just shepherd's pie in general. I think I am not a big shepherd's pie fan.
 Shepherd's pie, a little meat and veggies in the bottom, topped with, what I am pretty sure was instant mashed potatoes and a piece of Irish Soda Bread. Keegan loved the bread.
 They have a collection of leprachauns and police badges in Seamus McCaffrey's.
 By far, my favorite stop was Thai Basil. Look how beautiful the food was. And it tasted just as great. We had a small cup of soup that was beautifully flavored with lemon grass, a plate of veggies with some chicken and the most delicious Pad Thai ever.

 The space was cool, clean and beautiful and the staff efficient and personable. I will definately go back. The sauce on this Pad Thai was most delicious.
 It was pretty hot now. We walked past the Westward Ho and through the old post office. Apparently they used to call the Westward Ho, the Ho. And the club on top was "On Top of the Ho". Not politically correct these days, but pretty funny.
 Keegan seekingt out some relief from the sun.
 In side the post office were some really nice old murals and the old brass post office boxes.

 Our last stop was supposed to be pastries at the Fair Trade Cafe. I am not sure what happened but, we had little sandwhiches instead. I forgot to take a photo. We felt a little gyped of dessert and still had room, so I took Keegan to the Gelato Spot and introduced her to Gelato. She likes it. What's not to like?
I also enjoyed seeing this mural of Wallace and Ladmo on the side of the old channel 5 studios! How fun is that? I don't remember seeing it before.
It was a fun day, and as usual gave me lots of ideas of my own culinary tour possibilities!

1 comment:

Cathy said...

you just enjoy life, looks like a great time!