Aussie food truck, restaurant to open
True blue Australian cuisine will soon be available in Tucson, via food truck and a brick-and-mortar restaurant.
Glenn Murphy and his wife Sally Murphy, who worked for KVOA for several years under the name Sally Shamrell, are putting the finishing touches on both ventures.
Their Aussie Rolls food truck will serve sausage rolls - pork and ground beef wrapped in seasoned puff pastries - and iced coffee.
It is set to open by the end of May.
The Aussie Cantina, which will open in mid-August in the old home of Rhino Pub, 1118 E. Sixth St., will serve an expanded menu that will include lamb and steak dishes, meat pies, emu burgers and fish tacos using Australian barra-mundi.
Aussie beers and wines, as well as other selections from around the world, will be available at the Cantina in an atmosphere Sally describes as "shed chic" - the shed being a popular "man cave" refuge for men Down Under.
The couple recently moved back to the States from Glenn's native Australia for family reasons.
Sally is originally from Bisbee and her mom still lives in the area.
Over the course of his career, Glenn has opened and operated 39 restaurants and bars, including The Solarium, Backstage and Rhino Pub in Tucson.
He likens the Cantina to a "modern Australian pub" and says the two endeavors will complement one another.
You can follow the food truck and its progress at facebook.com/AussieRolls online.
Also this week in the world of food trucks
• Tucson chef Jamie Castro has parked her Jamie's Bitchen Kitchen Cuban food truck for the summer. She is on hiatus and "may be back in the fall." Castro cited family matters as the reason for the sabbatical.
• Filling the Latin-Caribbean void is food truck newbie DC Jumbie, which rolled out in a bright, tropically-festooned truck in late March. The truck, run by husband and wife team Chandra and Daniel Figueroa, specializes in Puerto Rican-inspired cuisine. Chandra, who was born in the Virgin Islands and grew up in Tucson, and Daniel, a native Puerto Rican, met in Miami in 2007 and moved back to Tucson in 2010. They are on the road five days a week, including participating in the Tucson Food Truck Roundup events. Catch them from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. today at the Research Loop, 1820 S. Research Loop; and at the Cinco de Mayo roundup from 5 to 8 p.m. Sunday at Himmel Park, 2653 E. First St. You also can follow them on Facebook at facebook.com/pages/DC-Jumbie-Latin-Caribbean-Food-Truck/275619682571705 to find out where they are pulling over.
• The creators of the online video game The Elder Scrolls Online will pull their food truck onto the University of Arizona Mall from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday. It's a chance for the game's developers and marketers to relate to their demographic - gaming savvy college students - through their bellies.
The truck will give away free food, including Pressed Eidarmelt (Nordic Jarlsberg grilled cheese) with a choice of three specialty dipping sauces - Fire Petal Dip (spicy, homemade marinara sauce), Emperor's Garden (chef's special pesto) or Tomato-Mammoth (classic bolognese). Sandwiches will be accompanied with Tangy Ninroot (pickles), Corkbulb Crisps (kettle chips) and Alocasia Fruit Juice (fruit punch spritzer). Find the truck on the mall at 1303 E. University Blvd. on the UA campus.
Sign up now for Grilling fun with Albert Hall
Summertime is upon us, which means one thing: It's time to get out of the kitchen.
Chef Albert Hall of Acacia Real Food and Cocktails is leading Smokin' Hot Cooking Classes that reveal the secrets of great grilling and smoking. Hall will be using his new favorite toy, the Traeger Texas Grill, to demonstrate.
Classes are from 9 a.m. to noon Saturdays beginning July 13 at Acacia, 3001 E. Skyline Drive. The cost is $55 per person and reservations are encouraged; 232-0101.
A lesson in wine and food at JW Marriott
Expand your vino expertise at the wine class at JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa's Primo Restaurant, 3800 W. Starr Pass Blvd.
Classes are from 3 to 4:30 p.m. Saturdays and include an afternoon of tasting and learning how wines and food complement each other. The cost is $30. Reserve a spot by calling 791-6071.
Saturday's class is on "Wine By the Numbers."
South Tucson salsa fest: WHo makes the best?
Who do you think would make the better salsa - cops or firefighters?
Or maybe the bureaucrats at City Hall?
On Saturday, salsa enthusiasts representing all three groups will see whose salsa reigns supreme in the Salsa y Salsa fiesta at the Garden Kitchen, the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension program in South Tucson that emphasizes nutrition.
From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, salsa cooks from South Tucson's fire and police departments and City Hall will whip up their best salsas. Visitors to the Garden Kitchen, 2205 S. Fourth Ave., will get to taste and judge the salsa as well as learn salsa dancing. Admission is free; 626-5849.
The Garden Kitchen, a joint effort with the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension, Pima County and the city of South Tucson, is funded by the USDA to provide nutrition classes throughout Pima County. The Salsa y Salsa fiesta as part of Fit 1st Saturdays in the city of South Tucson
47 Scott gets Esquire shout-out for sandwich
April was grilled cheese month, which sounds fairly blah on the surface until you look at just how far the humble melted American cheese sandwich has come.
It's been dipped and draped and dressed and disguised until that single slice of melted cheese between two smashed slices of white bread is a work of art.
Just ask the folks at 47 Scott, 47 N. Scott Ave., downtown. Esquire magazine's Food For Men blog this week highlighted the Tucson's eatery's "Stack of Grilled Cheese" sandwich in its monthlong examination of grilled cheese.
Esquire gave the sandwich a 10 out of 10 for cheese - "a trifecta of cheeses - yellow, Cheddar, fontina and house-made mozzarella" - oozing from toasted sourdough bread "kissed with garlic oil" then dressed up with add-ons: tomatoes, bacon, pickles or mushrooms.
The completion: A sweet and spicy dipping sauce on the side to create a savory, sweet, spicy, tangy, rich and toasty little stopover in grilled cheese heaven.
Check out the piece at esquire.com/blogs/food-for-men/grilled-cheese-47-scott-tucson-arizona
Tequila tasting to prep for Cinco de Mayo
The JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa's Salud Lobby Lounge is where you will want to be Saturday to get yourself ready for Cinco de Mayo on Sunday.
The lounge, 3800 W. Starr Pass Blvd., is hosting a a complementary tequila tasting event from 5 to 8 p.m. You can kick back and check out the resident guitarist Gabriel Francisco Romo's playing and enjoy complementary samples of anejo, reposado and blanco tequilas from brands including 1800, Casa Noble, Corralejo, Milagro, Maestro Dobel, Sol de Mexico and others.
There's no cost for the samples. For more information, call 791-6015.
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