by: Editor on 9/18/2016
The 8th annual Sedona Winefest kicks off September 24-25 where great food, music and, of course, wineries come together to celebrate the perfect glass of vino—and a weekend of fun! Tickets are available now, and securing them early is wise as this event can sell out. The 2016 Winefest is open from 11a.m. – 5p.m. both days at the Posse Grounds Park in the middle of Sedona. Local Arizona wineries are the headliners, along with food vendors highlighting some of the best and most innovative grub in the region.
Enjoy stunning views of the red rocks as you sip on the best wine of the year (and years past!). Tickets are on sale until September 23 at early bird prices of $25, and admission may be available at the door for $30. Saturday is the busiest of the festival, and door sales do temporarily close when the event is at capacity.
Every admission includes eight tasting tickets as well as a commemorative glass. You can purchase additional tastings, including a special 24-ticket bundle for just $20. Parking is plentiful and free, including a number of handicap accessible spots. This year is slated to be the biggest and best yet, hosted by Sedona Pines Resort, and with Verde Valley and Southern Arizona wineries pouring up specialty wines that you can’t get anywhere else.
Head to the Education Tent for a number of mini seminars from wine experts, and don’t forget to enter the raffle drawings throughout the day.
by: Editor on 9/17/2016
Sedona is rich with southwestern type, all-America cuisine (often with strong Mexican influences), as well as wholesome, organic and locally sourced restaurant fare. However, sometimes all a traveler wants is traditional comfort food via their favorite Chinese dish. Luckily, Sedona is home to Szechuan Sedona, half-Chinese restaurant and half-cocktail lounge, but 100 percent the perfect spot for lunch, dinner and late nights.
Explore the full sushi menu, or dive right into the variety of dishes on the dinner menu. For appetizers, try the tempura shrimp, chicken lettuce wraps with special house sauce, or BBQ pork spareribs. Tofu or shrimp lettuce wraps offer a lighter treat, and the pu pu tray has a little something of everything.
A variety of soups are available, including the extra spicy hot and sour soup, but many regulars come for the famous egg foo young with your choice of protein or a vegetarian option. Choose from a selection of shrimp, pork, chicken, beef or tofu-based dishes, or head to the noodle and fried rice menus for the house special crispy noodles or cashew shrimp with a side of pineapple rice.
For dessert, there’s sliced coconut cake, fried sweet banana, or exotic ice creams including mango, red bean and green tea. Try it with a plum wine, sake, or one of the specialty drinks like the Geisha Girl or Blue Ninja.
by: Editor on 9/16/2016
Head to Sound Bites Grill in Sedona every Wednesday to indulge in local wines and listen to a talk by wine experts, telling the story of each varietal’s journey. Choose the wines you want to try with four pours for just $10. Of course, the regular taps are readily available, too! Enjoy the views of Snoopy Rock, and watch the desert sunset while sipping on a new favorite glass of vino or pint of beer. It’s the perfect destination for date night or a company get together.
Sound Bites Grill is a leading Sedona lounge, nightclub and bar—but the full restaurant menu is what really keeps regulars coming back. Open for lunch, dinner, happy hour and late night, make sure to check out the dessert menu first so you know exactly how much room to save! The Angus beef sliders, ahi poke, and Fleetwood mac and cheese bites with smoked gouda and panko crusted parmesan are perfect to share.
Their coffee desserts and nightcaps are a treat in themselves. The Hot Tub Coffee features Irish cream, Frangelico, Kahlua and coffee with a whipped cream topping. The Keoke coffee has Kahlua, brandy, coffee and crème de cocoa with a thick whipped topping.
And for dessert? The pumpkin cheesecake and truffle trio are great to share. The martini cheesecake with granola and berry compote is divine, but the brown betty a la mode with granny smith apples in a caramel sauce with granola and ice cream really takes the cake (or pie!).
by: Editor on 7/14/2016
It’s tough to narrow down the must-try Mexican restaurants in a city like Sedona where authentic, local favorites are constantly battling it out for who’s best. However, you can try—starting with the gourmet dishes at Elote Café where chef Jeff Smedstad has spent the past 15 years traveling and studying regional Mexican dishes. Guacamole with spicy almonds and fresh corn, duck flautas, lamb adobo, and a separate tequila menu make this a very special experience.
The Café Jose Restaurant is a local beloved chain offering breakfast, lunch and dinner. The chorizo and eggs, pollo con mole ranchero, diablo shrimp and Santa Fe ribeye style steak are just a few of the options at this casual joint. There are also giant tortas, like the Hawaiian, Mexican and Cuban offerings, that are sure to satisfy!
Sedona’s Top Picks
Oaxaca Restaurant features a special menu for tour groups, because they’re just that famous. Chorizo fundido, Oaxaca posole (which blends Mexican and Native American flavors), and the Blue Mesa trout are all popular. For dessert, you can’t miss the Chocolate Binge or Mexican Sundae.
At 89Agave Cantina, treat yourself to an upscale affair! They serve brunch, lunch, dinner, and a tequila menu. Famous for their grilled sweet corn, ceviche del mar and chicken tortilla soup, the only thing as mouthwatering as the menu is the stunning views.
by: Editor on 6/11/2016
No trip to the Wild West is complete without sampling Sedona’s greatest steakhouses. Begin your journey at the Golden Goose American Grill, available for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and they have a banquet hall for special events. Beyond delectable cuts, it’s their desserts that really put them on the map! Try the salted caramel crème brûlée parfait, chocolate lava cake or mini bistro bites.
At Sound Bites Grill, you’ll be treated to happy hour specials as well as late night bites, desserts and night caps that are the perfect end to another gorgeous day in Sedona. At dinner, try the rascal flatbread with tiger shrimp, applewood smoked bacon and more. Their Red Rock’n Chili is the perfect starter, but the 8 oz. Stevie Ray burger with an autographed guitar is only for the biggest of fans—it comes with a $35,000 price tag!
You won’t be without a paddle at Up the Creek Grill and Bar, known for their fine wine pairings and elegant atmosphere. Roasted cauliflower and golden beets are fantastic starters for their Page Springs burger with green chilies and chipotle sauce entrée. Medallions of venison, the “queen of steaks” via a 6 oz. filet mignon, and a 12 oz. ribeye are all favorites on their dinner menu.
Make the most of your Sedona getaway by checking out one, or all, of these top notch steakhouses!
by: Editor on 6/1/2016
Spending Father’s Day in Sedona is a great reason to really enjoy the outdoors, the local cuisine, and indulge yourself in everything this magical town has to offer. Book “A Day in the West,” an adventure from the oldest family touring company in the area. Choose from a Jeep tour, horseback rides ending with a BBQ cookout, winery outings and much more. Cowboy and Indian guides are always local and are happy to reveal Sedona’s best kept secrets.
See the famous red rocks from an entirely new perspective with a Red Rock Balloon Tour! If hot air balloons aren’t dad’s passion, there’s also an Aerial Nature Walk, offering sky high treks that will make you feel like you’re soaring. Natural wonders abound, around you and below you. Schedule a sunrise flight with champagne, breakfast and a complimentary video to really make the day special.
The Wild West is the perfect place to “steak” your claim with some of the best steakhouses in the country. Head to Relics Restaurant and Roadhouse, a popular banquet space and authentic estate perfect for the holiday. There’s also Cowboy Club Grille & Spirits for the dad who prefers a low-key outing.
Silver Saddle at the Cowboy Club, Rainbows End Steakhouse and Saloon, and Mariposa Latin Inspired Grill are also fantastic options. Book early!