Scottsdale Travel News: July 2016
PROHIBITION HAS NEVER TASTED BETTER
At Counter Intuitive, a trendy cocktail bar in Old Town Scottsdale, you can now experience an era when – gasp – alcohol was illegal in this country. Counter Intuitive rotates its central theme and décor every few months, and its latest theme is the Agua Caliente Racetrack, a trip back to 1929 during Prohibition. The cocktails reflect the era and pay homage to the former racetrack in Tijuana, Mexico, which attracted mobsters, celebrities and other wealthy patrons who ignored alcohol constraints and imbibed in some of the most imaginative cocktails of the period. Indulge in more than 60 agave-based spirits while you travel back to the time of speakeasies and Al Capone. For media information, contact Catherine Arthur at firstname.lastname@example.org or 480-695-9122.
NAPA, MOVE OVER, ARIZONA’S IN THE HOUSE
While farm-to-table is all the rage in the culinary world, Scottsdale has taken the concept in a different direction – from vine-to-table – by introducing four Arizona wine tasting rooms downtown within the past 18 months. These tasting rooms tell the story of the state’s 100 award-winning wineries, many of which boast 90-point wines as recognized by Wine Spectator. The newest addition to this burgeoning wine scene is Carlson Creek Vineyard, a Willcox-based winery, which just opened a downtown location this month. Sip on wine in the 2,300 square foot tasting room or attend an educational seminar to learn more about winemaking in Arizona. The tasting room includes a 20-foot distressed copper bar and an art deco tin ceiling. Couches and a bistro table adorn the room, which also features Carlson Creek items for purchase such as T-shirts, glassware and of course, wine. At LDV Wine Gallery, a taste of the Willcox wine region is transported to the heart of Scottsdale. Sip a glass of Syrah, Grenache or Viognier beneath two shaded patios or enjoy bites and sips in the tasting bar and open kitchen. About 45 minutes away from LDV Winery in southern Arizona is another winery making a name for itself — Aridus Wine Company. This family-owned vineyard may run the largest custom crush facility in Arizona out of Willcox, but you can sample several varietals in its downtown Scottsdale tasting room. And you don’t have to go all the way to Willcox or Jerome to try Salvatore Vineyards. This small, family-owned winery also opened a downtown Scottsdale tasting room last year where you can try a pinot grigio rose, malvasia bianca or one of their agave wines.
THE ICE CREAM CONUNDRUM
When visiting Scottsdale this summer, you’ll be faced with a tough decision: which one of Scottsdale’s newest ice cream shops you should visit. Here’s a suggestion, why visit just one? The Baked Bear, a company specializing in custom ice cream sandwiches, opened its first location outside California in downtown Scottsdale on May 28. Dive into innumerable combinations of deliciousness, with ice cream flavors such as bear batter, salted caramel fudge or strawberry cheesecake to be smooshed between cookies of all kinds – and even brownies and donuts.
The Baked Bear isn’t the only new option in town; Creamistry, another California-based company, opened an Old Town Scottsdale location on May 9. If you’ve yet to discover liquid nitrogen ice cream, this is ground zero for your experience. Come watch an artisan handcraft your ice cream before your eyes, using all natural and organic ingredients, with more than 50 flavors and toppings. Indulge in flavors that range from Cinnamon Toast Crunch to Thai tea or tiramisu.
But why just pay attention to the new kids? If you’re talking about a Scottsdale ice cream institution, look no further than Sweet Republic, a hot spot – or shall we say cool spot – for all natural, handcrafted decadence in all its glory. In addition to a rotating list of nearly 20 fabulous flavors of ice cream, more discerning dieters will be pleased to see five flavors of vegan sorbet also on the menu. And there’s more than just ice cream to enjoy, with milkshakes, floats and sundaes also tempting your taste buds. Sweet Republic is Arizona-based, with one Scottsdale location and a second store in Phoenix. For media information, contact Brian Wright at email@example.com or 480-424-1958.
TALIESIN WEST CELEBRATES ITS FOUNDER WITH NEW TOURS
If Frank Lloyd Wright were alive today, he’d be celebrating his 150th birthday on June 8, 2017. To kick off the festivities early, Taliesin West, Wright’s winter home and school of architecture, has introduced two new tours that pay homage to the so-called father of American architecture.
Strolling through the walkways, you can’t help but be inspired by Wright’s diligent desert architecture. Delve deeper into the beauty that influenced his design for the first time with the two newest tours of this lavish property — the Garden Walk and Private Collections Tours.
Wright was captivated by the untouched Sonoran Desert, and beginning this fall, you can see how each plant played a role in shaping his vision of Taliesin West during the Garden Walk Tour. Walk the gardens, terraces and walkways and see the stunning landscape through the eyes of the iconic architect on this 60-minute tour that explores both the native and non-indigenous plants that thrive in this extreme climate. Advanced reservations are required, and the tour is offered every Wednesday at 8:45 a.m., beginning this fall. Tickets are $19.
Wright surrounded himself with beautiful works of art and decorative pieces from around the world to create an inspiring environment. Today you can gaze upon his finest personal masterpieces on Taliesin West’s new Private Collections Tour. Step behind the scenes into the collection vault for an exclusive look at rare artworks, including intricate Asian artifacts, handcrafted Pueblo pottery and stunning Buddha busts. This collection is very fragile by nature and is rarely seen, but during select dates, guests can view these cultural gems and learn the story behind their significance. Tickets cost $38, and the tour is available on the fourth Wednesday of the month September through May or the fourth Monday of June, July and August. For media information, contact Alison Rose at firstname.lastname@example.org or 602-300-3433.
VISIT X-GOLF FOR A STROKE OF LUCK
With more than 200 golf courses in Scottsdale and the surrounding area, there is no better destination for a golf enthusiast. And with elite courses such as Troon North Golf Club, We-Ko-Pa Golf Club and Grayhawk Golf Club, there are plenty of world-class options. But during the summer, you may be searching for a retreat from the heat, especially mid-day.
Now you can enjoy the thrills of the game when the temperatures are in the triple digits. Hop over to X-Golf, a world-class golf simulator experience that’s brand new to Scottsdale. The venue brings golf and entertainment together and includes top-notch facilities, state-of-the-art technology, motivational coaches and a beer and wine bar. The six simulators on site are designed for golfers of all skill levels and provide data about your swing and ball-striking ability. Whether you like to grab a beer and hit the course for fun or you’re Jordan Spieth, X-Golf will help you to improve no matter your skill level. For media information, contact Brian Wright at email@example.com or 480-424-1958.