First Spring Training in Scottsdale
We were in Scottsdale Old Town for our first Giants spring training last week. The weather may have been cold, but the food was delicious.
The highlight of the visit was FnB. We had the marinated greens on a raft, the braised leeks, the lamb chops, and the coq au vin. All were very well prepared and matched extremely well with the Arizona wines on tap. We had never had Arizona wines before so this was particularly informative. The Arizona Stronghold Tazi white blend was a particular favorite and we bought a "to go" bottle to take home.
The vegetables here were particularly good. After seeing all the great meats at the Old Town Farmers Market earlier that day, I wondered why there wasn't more local sourcing there as well (for the lamb in particular) but all was still very tasty. We loved the atmosphere and service, and the wine decanters at this place are some of the wildest I've ever seen!
Dinner at the Mission got mixed reviews. We split the Peruvian clam stew, which we both really liked, and I was very happy with my grilled swordfish entree. My wife was less fond of her green chile duck confit, feeling the favors competed and confused more than complemented. Our entrees took a really long time to come out so we were comped a dessert, and we chose the pumpkin bread pudding. It was an interesting concept but another case where the combination of ingredients read better than it tasted. The margaritas here (primarita for my wife, blood orange for me) were excellent. I'm much more a wine and beer drinker but it was clear the margaritas and cocktails were the way to go here.
The night we got in we wanted something easy and informal, so we went up to Grimaldi's. No discernible coal oven tasted - the pizza could have used a little more time in the oven - but it was still very enjoyable with a nice wheaty flavor in the crust. The local San Tan Devil's Ale was a hit as well.
We had lunch at the Cider Mill with some decent Reubens, delicious hot cider, and a tasty vanilla cream soda.
The Old Town Farmer's Market was another highlight. Being from out of town we were limited in what we could purchase, but the guy from Desert Smoke lured us in with his great sign and then sold us with his lovely sauces - we brought home both the Sweet & Spicy barbecue sauce and the Hatch Green Chile hot sauce. The Ghost Chile hot sauce was also delicious but there were only so many bottles we wanted to bring back in our luggage.
We were just scratching the Chowhound surface on this trip. I hope to get back in future years to try more of the great tastes here. Thanks for all the recommendations here!