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Machu Picchu Madness

Yes, it’s March. And yes, we’re in full madness mode. But we came to you live this weekend from our own version of madness against the backdrop of Machu Picchu…Inca’s Peruvian Cuisine!

Luis Campos, Matt Russell, Fatima Campos & Chris Samson

Our celebrity co-host was Chris Samson of 520 Eats, who shared some of his food headlines while walking us through his digital diary of deliciousness. Inca’s general manager Luis Campos then treated us to a round of Pisco Sours as he talked about the cultural and historical significance of this cocktail and other Pisco-based beverages. Inca’s owner Fatima Campos joined the party as well to talk about some of the show-stopping dishes on her menu, the role that live music plays in the Inca’s experience, and some delicious things happening during lunch hour and happy hour!

A selection of show-stopping dishes from the Inca’s menu!

The Campos family then served up some authentic Peruvian cuisine, including the Ceviche Mixto, Lomo Saltada, Papa Rellena, and Aji de Gallina. We just loved these vibrant flavors of the region. Viva Peru!


The Blessed Leaf

As we always say, nothing makes a culinary and cocktail experience more legendary than a premium cigar, and we came to you live this weekend from cigar central, Jerry’s Cigars!

Freddy Valencia, Morgan Sanchez, Mike Watman, Chef Maria Mazon, Matt Russell, Fred Ronstadt & Jerry himself!

Our celebrity co-host was Fred Ronstadt, fellow brother of the leaf and executive director of the Fourth Avenue Merchants Association. Fred shared a little about some of the sticks that he’s been enjoying lately while getting us current on the fun and frolic on 4th Avenue. We also sat down with Jerry’s own Morgan Sanchez, the Cigar Goddess herself, who talked about the great cigar events that make Jerry’s the talk of the town. We were also honored to sit down with Mike Watman of the Ashton Cigar Company who was there for a special Ashton Grand Tasting event. He profiled two cigars that were high on his favorites list, the Symmetry and the VSG.

A spectrum of salsas and tequilas which paired beautifully with our cigars

Then Chef Maria Mazon of Boca Tacos y Tequila arrived on the scene with a spectrum of salsas and tequilas to pair with the cigars. Maria makes friends wherever she goes, and we got the latest Boca update from this salsa celebrity. Jerry’s general manager Freddy Valencia then shared some news about a tasting event planned for April 1 that every brother and sister of the leaf needs to know about. See you at Jerry’s!


Purveyors of Purity

Pure. Organic. Clean. Local. Sustainable. Sounds like a lot of work to hold together that kind of commitment to quality, but it’s simply, and purely, the way they do business at this weekend’s broadcast location…Renee’s Organic Oven!

Rhonda Kendrick, Renee Kreager, Matt Russell & Madelyn Hardy

Our celebrity co-host was Rhonda Kendrick, brand ambassador at New Belgium Brewing Company, who talked about sustainability in beer culture and some fun ideas for seasonal sipping. We then welcomed libation lady extraordinaire Madelyn Hardy, who served up a local beer and some cocktails that have purity at their very core. Our featured guest was Renee Kreager herself, one of Tucson’s purity pacesetters, who shared some reflections on her 12 years in business, her dedication to local ingredients, her thoughts on organic foods, and her newly designed space.

The Tailored Tony, with organic beef, marinara, roasted red peppers, basil, and provolone, served on organic focaccia.

She also demonstrated what purity on a plate is all about, with servings of her Tailored Tony (her fresh twist on the Sloppy Joe) and Steve’s Chocolate Cake. Real people, real food. See you at Renee’s!


Rodeo Round-Up

In celebration of this week’s Tucson Rodeo, we saddled-up and trotted over to a destination where the cuisine and cocktails are at the heart of the cowfolk culture, the Horseshoe Grill!

Melinda Dickinson, Matt Russell, Nini Lopez & Chef Andy Romero

Our celebrity co-host was Melinda Dickinson, spirits brand manager for Hensley Beverage Company, who offered her headlines from Arizona Cocktail Week and other adventures on the spirits scene. We then caught up with Master Distiller Phil Prichard of Prichard’s Distillery in Tennessee who gave us a rundown on his portfolio and his upcoming pairing dinner in Tucson with Brother John’s. The Horseshoe Grill’s lead bartender Nini Lopez sat down with us well to talk about her affinity for Jack Daniel’s and how she’s celebrating this pioneering distiller’s artistry during Rodeo Week. No wonder why she’s a Jack fan, the cocktails she made for us were love at first sip! Our featured guest was the Horseshoe Grill’s executive chef Andy Romero, who taught us all how to eat like a cowboy. He also talked about his Friday fresh fish specials, his world-renowned BBQ rub, and his plans for an upcoming beer dinner with Barrio Brewing Company.

Bacon-wrapped and smoked onion rings with a house BBQ sauce

Our tasting was a show highlight, including a smoked salmon pizza, bacon-wrapped and smoked onion rigs, and a killer T-bone. See you at the Shoe!


Full Throttle at Tap & Bottle

With the end of Arizona Beer Week withing sight, we closed out the festivities in sudsy style on this live broadcast from Tap & Bottle!

Sarah Ritchie, Matt Russell, Rebecca Safford & Scott Safford

Our celebrity co-host this week was Craft Beer Betty herself, Sarah Ritchie of Arizona Beer & Cider Co. Sarah shared her headlines from that day’s Tucson Craft Beer Crawl, and talked up some beverages that she was pouring earlier in the day. We then fell into the flavors of Venezuela with Marlene Baquet of the Ricuras de Venezuela food truck that was on hand to feed the masses. Listen for the part that caused us to get up and dance! Our featured guests were Rebecca and Scott Safford of Tap & Bottle who told the story behind this popular concept, shared their favorite moments from Arizona Beer Week, offered their perspectives on the local craft brew scene, and treated us to a flight tasting of some of their suds, Safford-style!

A flight of beers from local Tucson brewers

They also made a huge announcement on the live show that they’ll be opening a second Tap & Bottle this summer! Look for it near the northeast corner of Ina and Oracle. We love breaking news, we love the Saffords, and we love Tap & Bottle!