Food Trucks raise cash for horses on July 4

The Tucson food-truck community will be out in force at The Maverick, 6622 E. Tanque Verde Road, on July 4 to help raise money for the nonprofit Food for Horses.

Stolen Recipe BBQ, Serial Grillers, Mustache Mike's Italian Ice, Earth's Bounty, BurgerRito and other trucks will be on hand as part of the group Food Trucks With a Cause.

All proceeds from sales will go to Food for Horses, which provides food for horses when their owners can't.

The afternoon event runs from 4 to 8 p.m. and will include face painting, balloon animals and a raffle.

Live music from the Jack Bishop Band begins at 8:30 p.m. and runs until 12:30 a.m. Admission to the Maverick after 8 p.m. is $5, which will also be donated.

Donations for Food for Horses may also be made through Taylor Tack & Feed, 9535 E. Golf Links Road. Call 885-9535 for more information.

Caffe Torino opens 2nd spot, on River Road

East-side fans of Oro Valley's popular Italian restaurant Caffe Torino can now skip the crosstown drive.

Owner Daniela Borella opened a second outpost last week in the former Ric's Cafe spot in River Center Plaza, 5605 E. River Road.

The restaurant serves a menu of northern Italian fare that mirrors the original Oro Valley restaurant, located at 10325 N. La Cañada Drive.

The new location is open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays; it opens at 10:30 a.m. Saturdays and Sundays for brunch.

Ric's Cafe operated in the River Road plaza from the 1990s until it closed in January.

Tucson Culinary fest gets new name, digs

The 2013 Tucson Culinary Festival is being rechristened Taste of Tucson and will move to a more centrally located venue.

The event, hosted by Tucson Originals, will be held on Oct. 5 at the newly renovated Plaza Palomino, 2970 N. Swan Road, said the group's executive director, Colette Landeen.

The move follows the festival's successful run last fall at Casino del Sol Resort & Casino. The casino, which changed management recently, is no longer a member of the Originals.

"It was a wonderful venue for us last year, but because they are no longer members we looked around and we found this place that has a lot of history and central location," Landeen said.

Thirty Tucson restaurants and 15 wine distributors will be represented at the event, which will include demonstrations by area high school culinary students, Landeen said.

Advance tickets are on sale now for $75 through online. The cost goes up to $85 at the door.

Taste of Tucson is one of two culinary events hosted by Tucson Originals. The other is the annual World Margarita Championship, set for Oct. 25 at Tucson Museum of Art. Those tickets are on sale now for $50 in advance. It's $60 at the door.

Maynards taking diners on "trip" to monterey

Maynards Market & Kitchen is presenting its first three-course wine dinner of the summer Friday night.

Chef Addam Buzzalini and Sommelier David Torkko start the series, a wine "tour" of the Pacific Coast Highway, with Monterey, Calif.

The main course feattures a ragout of Colorado lamb cheeks with black trumpet mushrooms, herb gnocchi, roasted French carrots paired with Bonny Doon Syrah "Le Pousseur" 2008.

The dinner starts at 7 p.m. and costs $49, excluding tax and tip. Space is limited to 30 people. Make reservations at 545-0577 or

Wine dinners in this series are the last Friday of each month through September. Next up: Sonoma on July 26; the Anderson Valley on Aug. 30; and Washington on Sept. 27.

Wine tastings are every Friday at 6 p.m. and cost $10.

Inger Sandal

Falora introduces a Ben's Bells pizza

There's a new entry on the menu at Ari Shapiro's months-old pizza restaurant Falora Pizza & Espresso.

The Bené Bell pizza features artichoke hearts, sugar snap peas and green bell peppers and sells for $15. Proceeds benefit Ben's Bells, the Tucson organization whose mission is to spread and encourage kindness.

Shapiro, founder of the Tucson Xoom juice smoothies chain and its spinoff businesses - Sparkroot coffee shop downtown and Falora at 3000 E. Broadway in Broadway Village - is collaborating with Ben's Bells founder Jeanette Maré-Packard on the pie. Maré-Packard's late son Ben was the inspiration behind her and her husband Dean launching Ben's Bells 10 years ago.

Bené Bell starts simply enough with a slick of San Marzano tomato sauce and fresh mozzarella. It's then topped with ingredients that hold special meaning to Ben's Bells: artichoke hearts representing the human heart where all kindness originates; sugar snap peas, which Ben, who died just before his third birthday in 2002, adored; and green bell peppers.

Shapiro started selling the pizzas two weeks ago and has sold about 25 so far, he said.

For more information, visit or call 325-9988.

Gerald M. Gay Cathalena E. Burch Cathalena E. Burch Cathalena E. Burch