Foodie Finds at The Phoenician
By Nadia Aidi, Founder of Food My Muse, @foodmymuse
Oh Scottsdale, you’re hot…literally AND figuratively, so I couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate my “for better or worse” half than a pool-filled staycation at a beautiful resort that is both gorgeous and fit for picky foodies like us.
The Phoenician in Scottsdale was THE perfect place for this.
The recently remodeled resort is gorgeous, has stunning views of the mountains/red rocks , several full-service pools, AMAZING service (no, really), a Drybar on premises (which I totally used) and the food…oh I will tell you all about the food…
THE PHOENICIAN POOLS & KALIO KABOBERY
We checked in, put on our swimsuits and made a b-line for the pool (it was over 100 degrees after all) so it seemed like the right thing to do.
We made a stop at Kalio Kabobery because although they offer their full food/drink menu at all their pools, Bryan ‘needs’ to sit at a table to eat his lunch.
Bryan started off with a mojito and ordered the lamb gyro. I realized they sell White Claws and since I never drink my sugar, I got the black cherry one and the Greek salad (with kale) and 2 kabobs, the salmon and veggie one. I will start by saying, they were SO good and fresh. The salmon kabob on my salad was so tender and juicy, really craving it again if you can’t tell [insert drooling emoji].
After we ate, we headed to their adult pool. I love the fact that one of their pools is adult-only; it’s a fun escape when we travel without our daughter. I will say though, I want to go back with her because there is a splash pad and a lot of aquatic fun for kids.
Anyway, back to the adult pool. Bryan got a daiquiri AND a lava flow because he wanted to be ‘that guy’ and since I still wasn’t drinking my sugar, I created a drink from scratch (cucumber, muddled mint, gin, lemon, lime, Pellegrino) and our server was super accommodating and made it seem like it was no big deal, which I really appreciate.
After a couple hours of swimming, we got a *tad* hungry so we ordered the fruit kabobs (YUM), shrimp aguachile and salsa verde with chips. They brought it to the pool.
It was the perfect poolside snack, fresh and light but after being done, we had to go get ready because that was only the 1st of 4 foodie experiences.
THE THIRSTY CAMEL
I asked Bryan if it was fair to say that Thirsty Camel had the best cocktails we’ve ever had, and he said it was fair indeed so I will reiterate, Thirsty Camel has the best cocktails we’ve ever tasted.
Sitting down at the bar, the first thing I noticed after being greeted by Justin (our bartender) was the gold hues everywhere, and I couldn’t get “Stairway to Heaven” out of my mind. The first thing I ordered was a Negroni (my favorite cocktail, and I judge a bar/bartender by their ability to perform the classics) and it was impeccable, really, I even filmed Justin while making one. It is on my Instagram feed.
Justin even recommended a gin I hadn’t tried before, because he thought it would go better with my drink than the one I had selected and he was absolutely right. Bryan got the Cloud Nine cocktail (Belvedere, St.Germain elderflower, lime, mint, cucumber, egg white) done in ripple style (the one with the beautiful Phoenician logo) and it was perfectly balanced.
At this point in time, we trust Justin and Thirsty Camel completely so we request to be surprised.
Bryan got a variation of an Old Fashioned, and a Green Point which he loved and I got one with mezcal and tequila reposado that was so smooth and good.
I was determined to try the food at every establishment in this resort, so we ordered the Hamachi appetizer and while we waited, we walked outside to see the magical sunset. Thirsty Camel has a gorgeous outdoor area, and during winter, they turn on the fire pits.
The views from here are seriously nothing short of amazing. After taking several photos and finishing our drink, we went back in for our food. Thirsty Camel does it again, it was so fresh and delicious, I was left wanting more…but we did have dinner reservations after all. The bar was set very high, no pun intended, for cocktail bars from here on out.
Since the second I discovered that J&G stood for Jean Georges, I knew we had to eat there. From the moment we walked in, we were acknowledged and got sat immediately.
Our table had a gorgeous view of the sky, and shortly after we sat, a thunderstorm started making the view even more spectacular. Our server recommended a glass of bubbles, with my preferences in mind and she was right on.
We started off with some oysters. I will pause here for a second because I love the fact that you order the oysters individually, so I had some East coast (Malpeques) and West coast (Kumamotos).
Our server said the Peekytoe Crab Cake and Tuna Tartare were their specialty, so we had to try. I have to say, they both exceeded my expectations. The Tuna Tartare came with radishes and a ginger marinade/brood that I wanted to drink by itself, it was that good. The Crab Cake was simple, but the ingredients were so high quality that it was one of the best ones I have ever had.
We enjoyed our drinks and appetizers for a minute, and then time to order dinner. I was set on the lobster until our server said they had a Veal Porterhouse, and Bryan got the USDA Prime Bone-in Ribeye per usual as well as some Lime & Asparagus, Creamy Corn and a side of Béarnaise.
While we waited, we went to the terrace to enjoy our drinks, the thunderstorm and each other’s company of course [tongue in cheek]. I can’t imagine how nice it must feel to be out on that terrace during the fall. Anyway, we were alerted by our server that the food was served and we rushed inside. My veal porterhouse was cooked and seasoned so perfectly, I wanted to forget proper etiquette and chew the last bits off the bone…but I didn’t. Bryan is a fan of bone-in ribeye and he was also very happy with his meal.
Needless to say, regardless of how full we were, we had to get dessert. We opted for the passionfruit ice cream (homemade) and a lavender tea, and they were the perfect ending to an amazing dinner.
MOWRY & COTTON
I love the idea of brunch, I mean…what’s not to love, right?
It is socially acceptable to drink in the morning and order copious amounts of food. That being said, not all brunches are created equal and I am pretty picky when it comes to recommending a brunch spot. Several things have to be met, such as good coffee with non dairy milk options, a good balance between breakfast and lunch offerings, good drinks, a cool ambiance and of course…things have to taste good.
Mowry & Cotton met all of the above.
It is such a cool space with a modern, rustic feel, it has a live DJ, views of the pool and actual outdoor seating (we passed, 100+ degrees). We sat and the first thing I ordered was a green juice and almond milk cappuccino while Bryan got a Passionfruit Fromosa.
My coffee was not only delicious, but it came with a super cute sugar crystal skewer. My green juice was very good, and Bryan loved his fromosa (prosecco with a scoop of passionfruit ice cream).
We then proceeded to order the entire menu… ok ok that’s an exaggeration but we did order:
The Croque Madame Hot Pot.
Blistered Shishito Peppers.
Citrus Salmon & Chickpea Bowl.
Market Fruit and Yogurt.
Like I said, we didn’t get the entire menu but we tried enough to be able to tell you that it was delicious! Everything has such a creative flair to the preparation that made me a very happy girl. My favorites were the Croque Madame Hot Pot, Breakfast Bruschetta and Shishito peppers.
Like they say although I disagree, ALL things must come to an end, even the good ones, so until next time, Phoenician Scottsdale (my birthday maybe?).
More information about The Phoenician restaurants.
For reservations at J&G Steakhouse or Mowry & Cotton, please call (480) 423-2404 or visit OpenTable.