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ahurwich

Binkley's & Cafe Bink (Phoenix)

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I had sizable expectations for our dinner at Binkley's Restaurant because I'd heard and read a lot about it and pictures I'd seen of their food -- many of them posted on this thread -- looked absolutely amazing. Binkley's is a cozy, fine-dining enclave located in the seemingly remote town of Cave Creek, which is about an hour's drive from Phoenix. Its chef and proprietor, Kevin Binkley, aside from being an affable and friendly guy is a seasoned veteran who's spent some serious time in kitchens at the French Laundry and the Inn at Little Washington. I'm told that his small, romantic restaurant is booked out solid, 2 months in advance and after experiencing a fantastically inventive and delicious meal there, it's easy to see why.

We were a group of 10 and had the private room in the back of the restaurant all to ourselves. It was nice because we had 3 in our party who were under 15 years old and I too, can get pretty squirrelly at long, formal meals. This ended up being a non-issue because we youngsters were captivated by the meal, which was paced flawlessly. And service was friendly, not exactly formal.

I'm not sure how to classify Binkley's and -- other than for reference here -- I'm not sure it really matters. Presentations are highly stylized and somewhat reminiscent of those at Alinea, although as far as I know, Binkley's does not use any custom serviceware. Still, there is a highly-modern, almost avant garde aesthetic to the plates at Binkley's. Flavor and ingredient combinations are fairly traditional at their core but from that foundation they quickly veer off into risk-taking territory. There are powders, foams and other components which are typically associated with the hyper-modern movement in cooking. As with other, top-tier members of the genre, these items are highly-distilled (in the cognitive sense) at Binkley's and used judiciously.

We started with some champagne and a crazy procession of about 15 amuse bouches. Our host had requested that the kitchen send out each and every amuse they had to offer and the kitchen happily complied. We enjoyed a seemingly endless series of tasty and provocative one-biters which literally amused us, no end. A few of my favorites were the tiny, deviled quail egg which was spiked with wasabi, the signature foie gras 'dipping dots' with banyuls syrup, the tiny Swedish meatball with huckelberry sauce, the delicate and piping hot pommes souffle with 3 house-made sauces, and the sopressata with date relish and sunchoke chip. There were so many and they were all quite delicious but these are the ones which particularly stood out for me.

After the amuses, it was time for salad, or should I say salads. As was the case with many of the courses on this night, 2 entirely different dishes were served, with half of us receiving 1 dish and the other half receiving another dish. The Hearts of Palm salad was delicious. It was comprised of fresh HoP, prosciutto, English peas, grape tomatoes, basil, roasted radicchio and pecorino romano and it was dressed with a balsamic glaze. The other salad, which featured tender and sweet slow-roasted Baby Beets and a delicious beet & rutabaga torteloni also contained watercress, asparagus, charred sweet onion and extra virgin olive oil powder.

Next up were a couple of incredibly delicious seafood courses. The Butter Poached Lobster was sweet and succulent. It was served with kiwi, sugar snap peas, radish, a lotus root chip and a lemongrass vinaigrette. This was a great combination, not only flavor-wise but visually and texturally, as well. The Banyuls-marinated Skate Wing was tender and tasty and was accompanied by bread and butter pickle, a purple potato chip, wax beans, fried capers and sunflower sprouts. This was another innovative rendition which made use of some very untraditional elements and yet still tasted delicious.

After seafood, we all enjoyed a delicious foie gras torchon, which was sliced into generous disks and served with a demitasse of warm foie gras and truffle cappuccino that was sensational, aromatic and addictive; a vanilla-black pepper biscotti and a red-wine poached seckle pear. Again here, the components worked so well together. The torchon was phenomenal and the other items with which it was served complemented the foie, flawlessly.

The 2 fish dishes served as the next course were both outstanding and it was hard to choose a favorite. The Red-Wine poached Halibut was a real eye opener. I thought it was a bold move to cook halibut in such a manner but it really worked. The fish took the red wine surprisingly well. The halibut was also served with creamed spinach, saffron-cipollini onions, golden raisins, walnuts and beurre rouge. I had no idea, before eating this dish, how well the halibut would go with the red wine preparation and the sweet components on the plate. It was fantastic. We also tried a more straightforward preparation of Monkfish (one of my favorites), which was served with fingerling potatoes, early morel mushrooms, sweet peppers and blue lake beans. Here the earthiness of the early morels and fingerlings took the hearty monkfish to a new level, without obscuring it in the least. I was surprised, again, to see fish prepared so boldly and have the result be so successful.

Next up was a delectable and intoxicating bowl of Porcini soup. It contained not only porcini but also curry oil powder and spring onion. This was just porcini-riffic and the curry and onion notes brought out the perfume of the porcini in a wonderful, unanticipated way. The other dish served in this 'funghi' course was an amazing and playful variation on an old, cafeteria favorite: chipped beef. This was a sinfully over-the-top rendition called Black Truffle Creamed Chipped Beef, which was heavy on the black truffle and served with hash browns and a poached quail egg. Words cannot even begin to describe this spectacular dish (at least, not mine). It was as good as the sum of its parts and exponentially better than that. Wow!

The meat course saw magnificent plates of Venison and Veal delivered to the table. Rack of Venison au Poivre was served with vanilla spaetzle, candied kumquats, sugar snap peas, cashews and an inventively delicious black pepper brittle. Veal (squared) offered both tenderloin and short rib of veal with fiddlehead ferns, oven-dried tomatoes, baby turnips and sunchokes. I loved both preparations and again, it was hard to choose a favorite (not that anyone was demanding I do so). But, I am partial to short rib in any form, and for that reason alone, the veal won out. The short rib was fork tender and nicely fatty. The tenderloin, cooked en sous vide, was meaty and juicy. And, when it came right down to it, the juicy, medium-rare venison was fantastic too.

Next, we enjoyed cheese plates which featured 9 different cheeses. Some I recognized, some I did not. It was fun sampling them and bridging the gap between the insane amounts of savory food we'd already enjoyed and (what would probably be) insane amounts of sweet food which were to follow. The accoutrements were nice, as well . . . pecan butter, crimson gold apples, orange marmalade and toasted baguette.

Cheese was followed by a couple of refreshing pre-desserts, which were followed by a variety of 'main' desserts! 2 of the pre-desserts -- a smooth and tart blood-orange 'creamsicle' and a cute little mug of green apple soda -- were delicious and refreshing. I loved the wild rice krispy treat, which was fun and extremely tasty. The fresh raspberry, spiked with pop rocks and bound with chocolate was a sensational one-biter.

The parade of desserts which came next was nearly overwhelming. There was an intriguing fruit soup with a base of sweet/tart, pineapple water, which was poured into its bowl, tableside, over a variety of immaculate, flash-frozen (liquid nitrogen) berries which, already positioned in the bottom of the bowl, awaited their dousing. It was so evocative of fresh fruit, it was uncanny and the individual components were easily distinguished. Floated on top of the soup was a fun fruit roll-up, flavored with apricot, blueberry and raspberry. There was also a fantastic coconut-milk ravioli with white chocolate powder, caramelized banana and some roasted banana ice cream that was right up there in Arlecchino territory.

Another fantastic, fruit-based dessert consisted of succulent supremes of juicy-sweet ruby red grapefruit, served in vanilla sabayonne with almond madeleines . . . textbook madeleines. The 'chocolate' course was a wondrous plate that was effectively, a multi-faceted study in chocolate. There was a demitasse of velvety and rich gianduja hot chocolate topped with a house-made marshmallow, a chocolate croquette, white chocolate mousse and a dense and chewy chocolate brownie.

I loved Binkley's because the food was delicious, inventive and extraordinarily unique. It took me by surprise a bit that such a phenomenal restaurant could thrive in such a seemingly remote location. But, I was informed that the very affluent Cave Creek isn't quite as remote as it appears. Nonetheless, it's clear that a chef of Kevin Binkley's caliber could draw diners to just about any location. There is an air of excitement at Binkley's that's palpable. It's like being in an arena in the presence of a great athlete or hearing a virtuosic musician give a live performance. Before dining at Binkley's, I didn't think of Cave Creek as a world-class dining venue. Kevin Binkley changed my mind and I'm pretty sure he's changing a lot of others, as well.

=R=

Binkley's Restaurant

6920 E Cave Creek Rd

Cave Creek, AZ 85331

(480) 437-1072


"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

LTHForum.com -- The definitive Chicago-based culinary chat site

ronnie_suburban 'at' yahoo.com

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My brother lived in Cave Creek until a few months ago (he moved closer to town when the kids went to college). I first dined at Binkley's in 2003 and wrote it up (very favorably) here. FWIW - my brother is a doctor who owned horses - a typical homeowner in the area. Cave Creek has good schools - which is what attracted him to the area in the first place. And with areas like Troon (and the Boulders and the Four Seasons) just a little to the south - there are plenty of people to keep the restaurant busy. It was a hard ticket even in 2003. We'll be going to visit my brother this summer - and we'll be dining at Binkley's again. I'm looking forward to it. Robyn

P.S. The restaurant will be closed the entire month of July for vacation.

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As luck would have it, a couple of my "brothers in food" Ronnie S. and Docsconz ended up being in Phoenix at the same time so I wanted them to try out my top picks in town. I have told them about Chef Kevin Binkley for quite some time and now was their chance to check him out. As we started making plans for the evening, our group kept growing so Chef Binkley prepared a set menu for our group:

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Special Menu

As we sat down, we found this menu awaiting us but it did not include the various amuses and additions that Chef Binkley had up his sleeve.


Edited by molto e (log)

Eliot Wexler aka "Molto E"

MoltoE@restaurantnoca.com

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I have heard a lot about Binkley's over time from my friend, molto e, and I am quite happy to say that it was every bit as wonderful as he had told me. The menu posted above only addresses the main part of the meal. It was preceded by a number of little bites - a big number of little bites!

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Curried Pear Soup I love curries and this one didn't disappoint with its creamy marriage with pear.

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Citrus cream cheese with grated flash frozen salmon Decadent play on breakfast only lacking the bagel and coffee!

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Mozzarella, almond, golden raisin, and caper salad This dish showcased many of the modern techniques in Chef Binkley's arsenal including his use of liquid nitrogen.

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Carbonated blue cheese foam with candied pecan, endive, and port reduction More modern techniques for a subtly flavored delight.

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Swedish meatball with sour huckleberry jam A nice take on a classic.

...more to come...


John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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Apple Cider Bomb, Duck Powder, Balsamic Reduction

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Deviled Quail Egg

The amuses bounced between the classic (deviled eggs, Swedish meatballs) and the modern (cider bomb etc.), which gives the diner the chance to experience something new and then to fall back on something familar, but all tasty.

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Peas and Carrots

carrot juice drop in vanilla, with sugar snap pea puree and lobster butter powder

This amuse was a play on the classic combination of peas and carrots and I recently had another spin on this combo at Schwa.


Eliot Wexler aka "Molto E"

MoltoE@restaurantnoca.com

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Confit sweet potato with crystallized ginger, bacon, and maple syrup froth.

Like his former co-worker at The French laundry, Grant Achatz, Chef Binkley took a twist towards the sweet within the savory portion of the meal with this course. Nice job.

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Grape consomme lava lamp - grape consomme with passion fruit, watercress, and burgundy caviar, prosciutto powder on the rim, and ruby grape. Clever and delicious, the whimsy in this course rested with the blinking lava lamp light.

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Pommes souffles with sauce vert, tonka bean bbq sauce, spicy catsup, and honey mustard. Absolutely greaseless and perfectly crisp, these pommes were simply superb.


John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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Banyuls Marinated Skate Wing

bread & butter pickle, purple potato chip, wax beans, fried capers, sunflower sprouts

The textures between the fish, beans and the potato chip and the flavors of the trio worked very well.

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Butter Poached Lobster

kiwi, sugar snap peas, radish, lotus root chip, lemongrass vinagrette

I have an affinity for butter poached lobster...then again who doesn't?

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Foie Gras Torchon

warm foie gras & truffle cappuccino, vanilla-black pepper biscotti, red wine poached pear

My favorite of the foie permutations that Chef Binkley prepares is the torchon. The creamy foie torchon was served at the right temperature andwashed down with the foie & black truffle cappuccino made for some quiet delicious savor moments. The red wine poached pear cut the richness and cleaned the palate.

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white truffle croquette with truffle mayo celery sprouts

I was hoping that I could snare Ronnie S.'s when he was not looking but that was an impossiblity :blink: .


Eliot Wexler aka "Molto E"

MoltoE@restaurantnoca.com

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Are you still in the area? We're flying in tomorrow - and will be there until Monday. Have reservations at Binkley's for Friday. Robyn

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Are you still in the area?  We're flying in tomorrow - and will be there until Monday.  Have reservations at Binkley's for Friday.  Robyn

Alas, no. It has taken us a little while to co-ordinate our reporting. I am sure that you will once again enjoy your meal there.

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Hearts of Palm, prosciutto, English peas, grape tomatoes, basil, roasted radicchio, pecorino romano, balsamic glaze A complex dish, the flavors harmonized well with another veer towards a sweeter side of the palate in the guise of a savory course. Of course the sweetness was due to the excellence of the ingredients - especially the succulent peas.

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Slow Roasted baby Beets, beet and rutabaga tortelloni, watercress, asparagus, charred sweet onion, extra virgin olive oil powder Another complex dish that works well and incorporates a number of modern techniques to fine effect.

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Foie gras dippin' dots with vanilla-banyuls vinegar syrup. Similar to Wylie Dufresne's foie gras dots that I had had shortly before this dish though with a very different presentation - clever and delicious.

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Soppresatta and date relish with a sunchoke chip. Small, but a nice interlude amongst the dazzling array of courses.

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White peach ice. This was a nice palate cleanser.


John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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Red Wine Poached Halibut, creamed spinach, saffron cipollini onions, golden raisins, walnuts, beurre rouge Flavorful and nutritious!

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Monkfish, fingerling potatoes, early morel mushrooms, sweet peppers, blue lake beans This dish was relatively simple, yet still delicious.

We were a group of 10 people including three children, who were given a private room. Along with this parade of fine food we also enjoyed some nice wines, unfortunately I didn't write them down and the specifics escape my memory as I was concentrating primarily on the food and the conviviality of the group. The children did a fine job of trying the various dishes and enjoyed the food and the meal other than having to put up with the adults for as long as they did. Regardless, they were troopers!

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Porcini Soup, curry oil powder, spring onion, porcini mushrooms This deeply satisfying soup may have been my favorite dish of all in this spectacular meal.


John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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Black Truffle Creamed Chipped Beef

Black Truffles, hash browns, poached quail egg

The first time had Chef Binkley's spin on this dish was in white truffle season, he made the chipped beef with center-cut New York strip that was cured, dried, smoked, shredded then cooked in a béchamel that was finished with truffles then placed over a hash brown and adorned with a quail egg.

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Rack of Venison au Poivre

vanilla spatzle, candied kumquats, sugar snap peas, cashews, black pepper brittle

the venison was magnificent


Eliot Wexler aka "Molto E"

MoltoE@restaurantnoca.com

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Veal2 - Tenderloin, shortribs, fiddlehead ferns, oven-dried tomatoes, baby turnips, sunchoke Interesting, perfectly prepared and delicious.

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Cheese, pecan butter, crimson gold apples, orange marmalade, toasted baguette

The specific cheeses in this vast array elude my memory, but this was one of the better combination cheese courses i have had. I could have made fine meal on this alone.

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Wild rice crispy treat. This little morsel of wild rice and first of the pre-desserts was wildly good, a clever alternative to the family staple.

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Blood orange creamsicle with black currant whipped cream. This was another clever and delicious variation of an American classic treat.

next...


John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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vanilla whipped cream with candied mint

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fruit soup with flash frozen berries, apricot, blackberry and raspberry fruit roll up pineapple water

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coconut milk raviolis, with white chocolate powder macadamia nuts, carmalized banana and roasted banana ice cream

I am not a fan of a pasta as a dessert, but the roasted banana ice cream was OUT OF THIS WORLD. I would loved to have brought home a pint of it.

An evening at Binkley's is always a treat, Chef Binkley's ever changing menu makes each meal a new experience. I am glad to have shared an evening with Docsconz, Ronnie S.and crew led by the imaginative delicious fare of Chef Kevin Binkley.


Eliot Wexler aka "Molto E"

MoltoE@restaurantnoca.com

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Lest one think that that was all there was to this meal...

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Crepes - pistachio, raspberry, caramel.

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Vanilla zabaglione with black pepper madeleines, ruby grapefruit, blueberries, and blueberry coulis.

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Chocolate - croquette, brownie, mousse with orange, hazelnut hot chocolate.

The desserts were delicious and a fitting almost end to this wonderful meal. The grapefruit in particular provided great balance to the sweet zabaglione. The hot chocolate was decadent and one of the very best I have ever had.

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Chocolate caramels, raspberry pate de fuille, and sugar cookies.

This was the end of an amazing evening of dining with great friends. One can not ask for more than spending an evening like this with great food and great friends in a lovely setting.


John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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Congratulations to Binkley's for being named one of the Bon Appetit Magazine reader's favorite small neighborhood restaurants! A recipe for the chef's Black Bass with Baby Bok Choy and Ginger-Lemgrass Sauce is featured on page 64.

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Congratulations to Binkley's for being named one of the Bon Appetit Magazine reader's favorite small neighborhood restaurants!  A recipe for the chef's Black Bass with Baby Bok Choy and Ginger-Lemgrass Sauce is featured on page 64.

I certainly wouldn't mind having it in my neighborhood. That being said, the quality of Kevin Binckley's cooking is more worthy of being a destination restaurant rather than a neighborhood one. :cool:


John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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Congratulations to Binkley's for being named one of the Bon Appetit Magazine reader's favorite small neighborhood restaurants!  A recipe for the chef's Black Bass with Baby Bok Choy and Ginger-Lemgrass Sauce is featured on page 64.

I certainly wouldn't mind having it in my neighborhood. That being said, the quality of Kevin Binckley's cooking is more worthy of being a destination restaurant rather than a neighborhood one. :cool:

I certainly agree the category is an odd one and the food really doesn't appear to be of the "neighborhood haunt" variety, but we'll take it!

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A meal at Binkley's is always one to remember and hopefully that will resonate with the James Beard voters as this is the first year Kevin is eligible to be nominated for "Best Chef of the Southwest".

The following photos are from a recent tasting...

Parade of Amuses

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Curried Pear Soup with Hazelnut Powder

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Confit sweet potato (in duck fat), pancetta, crystallized ginger and maple froth

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Romesco with parmesan froth and eggplant chip

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Foie gras dippin dots with foie powder and port gelee

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Avocado croquette with lime powder and aioli

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Pommes Soufflle...always a table pleaser

First Courses:

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Balsamic braised octopus with grapes, almonds, and frisee

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Foie gras torchon, pannacotta, pineapple and fennel

I have said it before but no one does Foie like Binkley in Phoenix, so smooth and creamy not to mention NICELY portioned. Kevin's torchon was always great but he has a new method of preparation that has lifted the torchon to another level.

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Curried chicken salad...a bite between courses

Second Courses:

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Caramel wrapped corned beef with braised cabbage, carrots, and horseradish brown sugar

like to see Binkley's spin on a reuben

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Bigeye tuna with gooseberries, cilantro, avocado, lotus root chip, piment d espelette, sweet soy, and lime oil

Fish Course:

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Grouper on clam chowder

The grouper was moist and the chowder that it laid on was delicious.

Meat Course:

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Pork - tenderloin, rind, belly sandwich, apple, slaw, cider bbq sauce

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Guinea hen - breast, bacon wrapped leg, with pear butter, wheat berries, leeks, braised butter lettuce, port reduction

the hen was perfectly prepared with the standout of the bacon wrapped leg

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Veal scallopini with white beans, English peas, caramelized onions, gremolata, tomato tartare

When I looked at this dish on the menu, it seemed a little tame for Chef B but the scallopini was great.

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24 hour sous vide short rib with smashed fingerling potato, cipolini onion, fried sage, and bordelaise

gift from the kitchen...

Dessert Amuses:

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Banana bread with chocolate sauce and peanut butter powder

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Rose water vanilla suckers

Desserts:

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Ricotta-honey doughnuts, with mocha pot au creme, quince marmalade, and ricotta whey froth

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Black truffle fondue with celery, popcorn, dried fruit, new potato, and croutons

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Raspberry pate de fuille, pistachio Madelienes, hazelnut chocolate truffles


Eliot Wexler aka "Molto E"

MoltoE@restaurantnoca.com

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Beautiful shots, Eliot, of what appears to be an amazing meal. I can't wait to return to Binkley's. It's now a "must stop" on any trip I make to the Phoenix area.

=R=


"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

LTHForum.com -- The definitive Chicago-based culinary chat site

ronnie_suburban 'at' yahoo.com

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I just literally called Binkley's 5 minutes ago to check if they have any cancellations tonight so that I can get in earlier. The person who answered the phone said "I'm sorry sir we don't have any cancellations. We do have a line outside waiting to get in. We have a bar that sits 8 and is first come first serve."

I guess I'll be keeping my 8:15pm tonight. Damn the 101 is closed this weekend.

After looking at Molto's pics, I can't wait till 8:15 pm!!!


Edited by Greystreet (log)

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I can't match the detail of the previous writeups here, and I didn't take any photos of our meal, but I do want to chime in with a few words of praise for Binkley's.

My wife and I were in Arizona a few weeks ago for a short vacation which included our wedding anniversary. We're normally pretty strong on planning our trips, but this time we didn't plan anything specific in advance. We knew we wanted to go somewhere nice for dinner on our anniversary, but we didn't make reservations before our trip. I'd read about Binkley's here, and I gave them a call when we go to Arizona. Thankfully, they were able to get us in for our anniversary.

Both of us chose to go with the tasting menu with wine pairings, and it was wonderful. We loved every course, the amuses were a delight and the service was excellent. Both of us were incredibly thankful that we decided to go there for our special night (and that we were able to get a reservation on one day's notice). We'll definitely go back next time we're in town.

So, two more thumbs up for Binkley's!

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I haven't been to Binkley's in a while and while the food looks technically amazing, I almost feel like it is getting overworked and overcomplicated. Maybe on some dishes all those flavors work, but I just can't imagine wanting that many "challenging" dishes thrown at me during one meal. Those kind of dishes should be spaced out over several courses to add interest to the meal at a point when the diner is getting comfortable- not a series of punches thrown in combination. I don't know, I guess what I'm trying to say is, that (like The French Laundry) I liked the style of the food better when they first opened.

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I haven't been to Binkley's in a while and while the food looks technically amazing, I almost feel like it is getting overworked and overcomplicated.  Maybe on some dishes all those flavors work, but I just can't imagine wanting that many "challenging" dishes thrown at me during one meal.  Those kind of dishes should be spaced out over several courses to add interest to the meal at a point when the diner is getting comfortable- not a series of punches thrown in combination.  I don't know, I guess what I'm trying to say is, that (like The French Laundry) I liked the style of the food better when they first opened.

One thing that may throw off your analysis is that I ask him to throw me all his amuses so I can see them, but a typical tasting does not have 15 amuses.


Eliot Wexler aka "Molto E"

MoltoE@restaurantnoca.com

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I haven't been to Binkley's in a while and while the food looks technically amazing, I almost feel like it is getting overworked and overcomplicated.  Maybe on some dishes all those flavors work, but I just can't imagine wanting that many "challenging" dishes thrown at me during one meal.  Those kind of dishes should be spaced out over several courses to add interest to the meal at a point when the diner is getting comfortable- not a series of punches thrown in combination.  I don't know, I guess what I'm trying to say is, that (like The French Laundry) I liked the style of the food better when they first opened.

One thing that may throw off your analysis is that I ask him to throw me all his amuses so I can see them, but a typical tasting does not have 15 amuses.

O.K. Good to hear. I need to get back up there and see what they have been doing more recently.

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