(PHX) Pillsbury Wine Dinner at Quiessence
I had mentioned this dinner on an earlier thread. Being a fan of both Pillsbury wines (Cochise County), and Quiessence (at the Farm at South Mountain), this event didn't disappoint. It was our first wine dinner at Quiessence, but not our last. They really did it well - organized enough to hear Sam Pillsbury speak and describe his wines, but social and fun too as the group of around 40 were seated at large tables that sat about 8 people.
Everything on the menu ($59 pp) was delicious; in fact, my husband mentioned that this was one of his favorite wine dinners we've been too. Generous portions also - none of us could finish our entrees. As always, I love the focus on seasonal, local ingredients at Quiessence. I also bought a few more bottles of Pillsbury wine.
I loved this salad - Willcox pears poached in Pillsbury rose, with house-cured prosciutto, Queen Creek pistachios, fresh baby arugula from the farm, and Stravecchio cheese.
2006 Pillsbury Rose
Rainbow Valley (Maricopa) farmer's cheese and spinach ravioli with crushed tomato sauce. All the pasta is made in-house by Anthony Andiario, the sous chef.
2006 Pillsbury Roan Red
Pecan wood-grilled Power Ranches' (San Simon Valley) grass-fed beef with lobster mushrooms and demi-glace with One Windmill Farm (Queen Creek) whipped potatoes.
2006 Pillsbury Diva
Pumpkin Creme Brulee with house-made Gingersnaps and Cortez Coffee (Tempe).
James brought out the kitchen staff and introduced them to the crowd, which I always appreciate, and at the end of the night we were also able to spend a few minutes talking with the talented Chef Greg LaPrad.
I love Quiessence. It should be especially nice dining al fresco now that the weather is cooler, and I'm looking forward to more enjoyable evenings here. In fact, with the new lunch menu at Quiessence, I've already planned a return visit with a girlfriend for a leisurely afternoon in this pretty oasis.
Their next event is "Blues at Q - Under the Stars" on Thursday, 10/16 for "a night of local blues, brews, food and wine". More info here:
Places link with map and info:
Rubee, I was there, too! I had a glass of Roan Red the prior week at Quiessence and was eager to try more of Pillsbury's stuff.
I can't agree more -- the food and the wine were outstanding. My friends and I bought a case from Pillsbury. For anyone who thinks Callaghan is the only decent Arizona wine, think again. Pillsbury also shares grapes and facilities with Page Springs, which is also wonderful.
But back to the food: I think Greg is indeed one of the most talented chefs in the city right now. And he truly cares about his place. I also tried his $29 September three-course special and loved it. I am putting this on my "go-to" list whenever I want a nice dinner or want to impress friends.