Phoenix may not be widely recognized for its food scene, but local food and drink enthusiasts will tell you that the Valley of the Sun has one of the most under-rated dining scenes in the country.
One of the most-lauded pizzerias in the country, Pizzeria Bianco, is in Phoenix, and in the past few years the city has bloomed with locavore-inspired eateries and a growing roster of restaurants specializing in global cuisine.
Devoured is Phoenix's premier annual foodie event — Photo courtesy of Patricia Escarcega
If you want to get a snapshot of what's happening in Phoenix's thriving food and drink scene right now, there's no better place to do that than at the Devoured Culinary Classic.
The annual culinary event, which is now in its seventh year, is held at several venues around town, culminating in a two-day food and drink festival held at the Phoenix Art Museum.
This year, the festivities kick off with a bartending competition at the DeSoto Central Market on Sunday, February 28th at 2 pm. Some of the best bartenders in the city will be on stage mixing up drinks for a panel of judges. Tickets to the bartending competition are $40 per person and include a sample of each cocktail served. Proceeds will benefit the Local First Arizona Foundation.
Later in the week, lovers of both food and art can join some of Phoenix's top chefs and artists for Palette to Palate. The unique event pairs visual artists with local chefs, who interpret each other's work in front of a live audience.
This year, the event will take place on the 6th floor balcony of the Renaissance Phoenix Downtown Hotel. Guests will be treated to food and Arizona wine tastings. Tickets to the event, which is scheduled for Thursday, March 3rd, are $40 per person.
The culmination of Devoured is the Culinary Classic, which takes place March 5th-6th at the Phoenix Art Museum. More than 100 top local restaurants, wine makers, craft brew masters and other local food producers will be participating this year.
During the culinary event, guests can stroll through the museum's Dorrance Sculpture Garden and Great Hall and sample dishes from dozens of restaurants, as well as drink samples from Arizona wine and beer producers. VIP tickets are available for $150, which gives guests early entrance into the festival and access to a VIP lounge.
If you're planning to attend the Devoured week of food and drink festivities, the Renaissance Phoenix Downtown Hotel in downtown Phoenix is offering special rates for festival attendees.