At each of Zaytoon Kabob Bistro (ZK Grill)?s three locations, the savory scents of spiced, marinated kebabs ascend from sizzling grills, tickling the olfactory lobes of hungry visitors and jump-starting stomach-growling reflexes. Tender morsels of chicken, beef, and lamb cook over open flames, strung on stainless-steel skewers that help to banish unwanted fat and help high-school teachers emphasize points they've written on the chalkboard. Fragrant basmati rice and colorful pomegranate-walnut sauce accompany daily special dishes of eggplant stew, slow-simmered lamb, and baked chicken; desserts such as baklava and saffron ice cream cap off feasts in a traditional Mediterranean fashion.
The Corn Flower’s executive chef, Cecy Solano, is an artist whose medium is the humble empanada. Working from a palette of sweet and savory sundries, she balances poblano peppers with sour cream and potatoes, draws out the flavors of ground beef with red-wine sauce, and tweaks the classic combo of peaches and cream by replacing the cream with vanilla syrup. Her other authentic Mexican specialties include savory and sweet tamales, as well as breakfast and lunch burritos accompanied by homemade salsa.
Rather than keep her recipes all to herself, Cecy and her husband share their knowledge of Latin American cooking and culinary history during tours of the eatery and in-home cooking classes. Occasionally, she turns her pastry-making prowess to baking show-stopping 2-D and 3-D gourmet cakes, or trundles her gourmet eats to catered events that she decks out with artfully prepared dishes and centerpieces whittled from fruits and veggies.
When guests come to Eastwind, the time of day determines the vibe they’ll experience. If it’s before 4 p.m., the eatery is a fast-casual restaurant; after 4 p.m., the staff switches into full-service mode. Either way, guests will find a full menu of Japanese fare awaiting them. Chefs top ball-shaped sushi rice with eel and yellowtail to create nigiri, whereas sushi rolls bring together a greater assortment of ingredients: the Tootsie roll, for example, features shrimp, crab cake, cucumber, and avocado that’s drizzled in eel sauce. In addition to preparing sushi, chefs fire up the stove to pan-fry crispy noodles that they top with glazed shrimp, calamari, scallops, and a sonar device that tells encroaching dolphins to find their own dinner. They even grill teppanyaki-style sirloin and salmon that are served on a sizzling skillet of veggies.
The Gelato Spot’s frozen-dairy hotshots merge ingredients imported from Torino, Italy, and churn a bevy of creamy gelati and sorbets daily. The gelateria’s small tongue-chilling batches have earned the shop the title of Best Frozen-Yogurt/Ice Cream Spot in AZ Central's 2011 readers’ poll, which praises the eatery’s extravagant displays and cheerful staff. Though The Gelato Spot specializes in traditional Italian flavors, such as stracciatella and amarena, they also craft American renditions such as Snickers, new york cheesecake, and salted caramel. As diners shovel in glacial delights on The Gelato Spot's heated and misted patio, they can also cruise the web with complimentary WiFi.
Michael Merendino grew up hearing stories about his family history. Sitting in his father's pizzeria, he learned how the Merendinos left Sicily for Long Island in the 1900s, and about the bits of Old World culture that they brought along with them. One such touchstone was the rustica: a small, pizza-like creation traditionally made with unused pieces of bread dough. Michael brought the rustica with him when he moved from the East Coast to the East Valley, making it the star of his menus at Crust Restaurants.
Crust's hand-stretched rusticas arrive topped with everything from marinated tomatoes and fresh mozzarella to arugula and prosciutto, and are sized for individual diners. To help feed larger groups, the chefs also bake 20-inch, thin-crust pies as well as square pizzas ideal for diners on a strict Euclidean diet. Hearty entr?es such as homemade meatball parmigiana, chicken marsala, and shrimp scampi, round out the menu of comforting Italian-American favorites.
If you were to trace the origin of one of Jamba Juice?s freshly squeezed juices, it wouldn?t take long before you ended up face to face with its most important supplier: Mother Nature. Whole fruits and vegetables from her gardens, groves, and orchards fill Jamba Juice's stores: kale, apples, pineapple, carrots, beets, and other produce. Although it?s serious about filling cups with wholesome, natural ingredients, the company is a little more playful when it comes to the palate.
Sure, there are classic juices on the juice menu. Purely Carrot, for instance, which is as elemental and straightforward as it sounds. But there?s also the Tropical Greens, which combines apple juice and pineapple with super greens and chia seeds. And there?s Kale Orange Power, loaded with kale, bananas, and orange juice?all of which are packed with a serious helping of vitamins and manganese. Regardless of which flavor you choose, each 12-ounce juice packs in at least 1.5 servings of fruits and veggies, making it a convenient way to restore energy and get nutrition on the go. The same commitment to simplifying healthy eating can be found throughout the Jamba Juice menu, from its Fruit and Veggie smoothies to its Artisan Flatbreads.
In addition to providing healthy options to customers, Jamba Juice sponsors Team Up for a Healthy America. The initiative is focused on improving childhood nutrition and fitness by encouraging fans to join the Team Up community of celebrities, athletes and other leaders committed to helping the nation stay fit?which you can do by visiting the main Jamba Juice website.
With over 500 stores serving the full freshly squeezed juice menu, Jamba Juice is the perfect way to blend in the good.