Prix fixe options (PHX)
Has anyone tried the "date night" prix fixe menu at 98 South in Chandler? It looks good (www.98south.com) and seems reasonable at $68 a couple, plus tax and tip. It includes a glass of wine or beer for each, which is nice.
On a related note, this sour economy has a sweet side .. I'm seeing more and more prix fixes outside of Restaurant Week. T. Cook's and Noca come to mind -- any others to share?
Ooh, Cafe ZuZu! I tried their short ribs at the Phoenix Cooks event and they were divine -- can't wait to go there for a whole meal. Thanks!
Someone also said Quiessence has one, but I don't see it on their web site. Also, I fogot to give props to Portland's, which has a Saturday night prix fixe that's out of this world.
Quiessence Restaurant & Wine
6106 S 32nd St, Phoenix, AZ 85042
Portland's Restaurant & Wine Bar
105 W Portland St, Phoenix, AZ 85003
No, they have a $29 menu now; I finally found it on azcentral.com:
Dedicated to showcasing the very best in products from local Arizona farmers and growers, Quiessence has created a three-course prix fixe menu of creations using delicious, seasonal flavors and produce ($29). Start with a local garden green and herb salad, move on to braised Arizona Power Ranchesbeef skillet with aromatics, and close with a warm Gala apple crisp made from fruit harvested in Willcox topped with crème fraiche whipped cream. Available through Sept. 30.
(OH, that's the kicker! Expires Sept. 30. Darn.)
Details: 5-9 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays. 6106 S. 32nd St., Phoenix. 602-276-0601.
The obvious ones: Binkley's tasting menu, and Sea Saw's Omakase... although neither are inexpensive options... and neither are recent developments
I know Morton's usually does a summer "special" elsewhere in the country... maybe call and ask there?
I'm not sure if prix fixe menus are the best value in many cases. Often a restaurant's entrees are more than filling. Apps can be shared, so can a dessert. Case in point: One of the RW eateries near me offered a Thai soup, chicken entree and ice cream for $29/pp. At many other (and arguably better) Thai places, this same order would be the $20-ish for two, including a couple of those big Asian beers. There's a seemingly decent prix fixe deal at an Italian place in Aracadia, for example, that includes a bottle of wine (not related to RW).
And among my friends, the cost of a meal ratches up very quickly depending on Bev choices.
If seeking value, I'd first look to hit a place offering meal/drink deals, great happy hours, etc. They might make less of a profit per person, but I'm much more likely to visit many times and tell people about it, rather than reserve the place in mind for special occasions.
You are right; prix fixe is not always the best value -- especially some of the RW options.
But $29 at Quiessence? And Portland's also has half-off bottles of wine on Saturday, and they have 2-3 options for each course, so I was able to share with hubby and try a bunch of stuff. I am also of the opinion that there is no shame in taking home a doggy bag if you get too much food.
I like happy hour deals, too -- they're a great option. But I like sitting down for the whole three-course to-do sometimes. (OK, often.)
From a pure "value" standpoint, I have no arguments. However, when a good house does a prix fixe (not related to a promotion, or event), it is usually more of a "chef's tasting," and there are some innovative chefs in the Valley. When they get "turned loose" the food is often spectacular.
We do "chef's tastings," when offered, around the globe. I have only been disappointed on two occasions, and I'm not sure I would have fared better ala carte in those cases.
Though I love pouring over a well-layedout wine list, I often go with the "sommelier's pairings" as well. If they are any good, they know the kitchen and their cellar. Again, with hundreds of these all over, we've only been "burned" on about three occasions - only one in the Valley.
As an aside, wife has a few food allergies, and these have always been honored by the chef. I normally call ahead with her limited restrictions, and every chef has handled it perfectly, as has the sommelier when doing pairings for two different courses. Since I can eat anything, I get parts of two courses and wines to match - win-win for me.
Now, when factoring in "specials" and "promotions" well, we normally do not do these, so I don't have a feeling for any.
From recent email
Every Sunday though Wednesday evening from 5-7pm, sample the best of Trader Vic’s. Enjoy a $30prix fixe three-course dinner with your choice of:
Hearts of Iceberg Salad
Crisp Iceberg, Applewood Bacon,
Sweet Tomatoes, Shaft Bleu Cheese
& Garlic Buttermilk Dressing
Oven Roasted Pork Lettuce Wrap
with Crispy Vermicelli Noodles Sweet
Butterfield Crispy Prawns
Coated in Panko
Roasted Chicken Breast
Whipped Potatoes, Sesame Vegetables
& Sweet Plum Sauce
Sweet & Sour Salmon
Maui Onions, Red Pepper and Chunks of
Pineapple tossed in Red Chili Cherry Glaze, Steamed Jasmine Rice
Roasted Pork Tenderloin
Whipped Potatoes, Sesame Vegetables
& Sweet Onion Marmalade Glaze
Rum Gelato with Praline Sauce
New Zealand Passion Fruit Cheesecake
Gee, who ever could you be talking about... ;-)
(NB: I work at Vic's. I'll keep this as dead neutral as possible)
The lettuce wrap and crispy prawns are both half-sized (a regular order of prawns is 6, the prix-fixe comes with 3). Everything else is the normal size. The sweet & sour salmon is exclusive to the prix fixe menu, and is one of the kitschiest things I've seen come out of the kitchen.
I had dinner over at Eddie Matney's recently (in case the mods are wondering if this is industry insider, no it isn't. He invited everyone in town over to a free dinner and chat through his blog) and he mentioned that he's starting a prix-fixe called Campaign 20.08 with a three-course prix fixe for, you guessed it, $20.08. I haven't heard any more details about it yet, though.