When you think of Tucson, several things come to mind…depending on where you live.
For most Tucsonans, they think of mountains, bicycling and the rodeo. An onslaught of new bars and restaurants have invaded downtown from other cities in the state.
Hi-Fi Kitchen & Cocktails comes to us from Scottsdale, Diablo Burger from Flagstaff and coming next week, nationally acclaimed Pizzeria Bianco will be opening its doors to pizza lovers in the Old Pueblo. Short of The Buffet being named ‘Best Dive Bar in the Country’ by Esquire, the Tucson food and beverage scene is not tripping the light fantastic. Chris Bianco’s downtown Phoenix location has been named ‘Best Pizza in the Country’ by venerable publications Bon Appetit andVogue as well as celeb-chefs Rachael Ray and Andrew Zimmern.
The craft beer movement that is sweeping the country is also exploding in Tucson. For the longest time, Tucson was a three brewery town with Nimbus, Thunder Canyon and Barrio Brewing reaping all the local love.
Within the past three years, many more have started popping up, beginning with Dragoon on the west side, Borderlands downtown, Ten Fifty-Five practically next door to Nimbus and Sentinel Peak in midtown.
With the influx of such incredible beer being brewed locally, it would seem that some of the state’s larger breweries would be losing traction in town.
That would be a glaringly incorrect observation.
SanTan Brewing out of Chandler has been making a big push in Tucson with its myriad beer selections available nearly everywhere you look.
Beer dinners have been hugely popular recently, pairing craft beer with hand-crafted food by local chefs citywide. The latest beer dinner to hit the Tucson dining scene will be a partnership between SanTan Brewing and the specialty department at Whole Foods’ River Road location.
The e. River Bar has long been a favorite watering hole for my friends and me, they have a large selection of local beers on draft and a wide selection of bottles to purchase along with some of the best charcuterie in town.
The dinner will consist of slow-cooked short ribs in a Sonoran honey glaze with cheddar polenta and fried green tomatoes to go along with SanTan’s Epicenter Amber Ale. At 5.5% ABV and a low IBU count of 20, the ale is an easy-drinking beer that serves as a gateway to other craft beers.
The toasted malt character and crisp finish is a delight for even the most staunch beer snobs as evidenced by its 2012 gold medal in the US Open Beer Championship.
For dessert, participants will be served fresh, seasonal blueberry pie topped with a meringue and served with the summer favorite, Mr. Pineapple wheat beer. This wheat beer has natural pineapple juice in the radler style, Mr. Pineapple is a light and refreshing beer to enjoy during the hot Arizona summer.
WHEN: Thursday, July 24 6:30 p.m.
WHERE: Whole Foods River Rd. 5555 E. River Road
COST: $35 per person/$60 per couple
CONTACT: Jason Hoffman (520) 461-1300 x. 230