This past week I had a working vacation for some business meetings in my former home of Phoenix, Arizona which overlapped with a business conference my girlfriend was working at so we had a chance to see the Phoenix nightlife. My review of several activities follows below:
- Elements -- http://www.sanctuaryoncamelback.com . My friends Tom and Ben hosted us for dinner at this excellent restaurant. My appetizer was a FANTASTIC dates/marcona tart which was rich enough to be a dessert. For my main/entree I enjoyed their grilled ahi tuna which would have pleased King Neptune himself. This restaurant clearly exceeds my "5" highest level rating. If you are in the Valley of the Sun this is a must visit venue.
- Lon's at the Hermosa -- http://www.lons.com . This was our venue for a Valentine's Day dinner so the restaurant was VERY busy but that should not have affected service such as the lackluster performance at the bar area while we waited for our reservation. There was one bartender working he was out of a few standard beers a bar should stock then he had to retrieve more wine glasses after I was able to order a merlot -- the lesson here is that TWO (2) bartenders would have improved the experience for all patrons. For dinner I had the beef filet (butterflied which was excellent) but the spinach side dish was essentially a salt block better fit for deer versus myself eating it. Sadly, I have to award Lon's with a "3" rating but want to give them a "4" due to the quality of our waiter but will leave them at a "3" since the "fondue for two" was uninspired in presentation. No grade inflation from Professor Beagle!!! :)
- "Munich" -- I took some time off to see a matinee of this film which I would rate with a "1" (out of 5) but would give them a "2" if the theatre refunded my money! The film is focused on the 1972 Munich Olympics hostage taking and the follow up action by the Massad of Israel to assassinate the terrorists involved. As a amateur historian I thought the film lacked any historical context and some of the worst character development I have seen in a film for quite a long time. I did not check the credits for who was responsible for casting but assuming it was done accurately according to the book the film was based on the character of "Papa" who ran the private family business who sold intelligence to both sides of battles to the highest bidder was quite an odd character. "Papa" was a cross between Don Corleone in the Godfather and Dom DeLuise in the kitchen, http://www.domdeluise.com/!! :)
Overall it was nice to visit Phoenix again. I won't be able to attend Spring Training this year to see the Cactus League teams but hopefully 2006 will be an option.
See you at Fat Man's Pass,