We’re already halfway through August! How has the month treated you so far?
August has been perfection for me. Last week Jared finally came home from a long tour with his band and we celebrated by escaping the desert for San Diego. It was perfect. The weekend before was just as perfect because I was lucky enough to attend the TSRI Sizzling Summer Retreat with a handful of amazing bloggers here in Arizona. If you follow me on Instagram, you probably saw a few pictures from our adventures. The entire retreat was beautifully organized and hosted by Chad and Donna of The Slow Roasted Italian (a fabulous blog if you aren’t already familiar) and made possible by some amazing sponsors. I thought I’d share some highlights from the amazing weekend with you!
Being from Arizona I was so excited to finally see inside the gorgeous FireSky Resort and Spa in Scottsdale which graciously hosted the retreat. I’m a huge fan of Kimpton hotels and the FireSky was no different with beautiful grounds, immaculate rooms, daily wine hour, and fantastic service. The surroundings are true to the name with magical fire elements throughout. We all were treated to massages at the award-winning Jurlique spa which was absolutely heavenly.
We also dined at Taggia, a coastal Italian restaurant within the resort. We were lucky enough to have Chef Massimo De Francesca prepare a five-course meal for us which was indescribably scrumptious. Let’s just say I had the BEST tiramisu I’ve ever tasted. I can’t wait to visit Taggia again.
We were also treated to a wine tasting hosted by Entwine Wines, a Food Network and Wente Vineyards wine. Their wine bottles have food pairing suggestions right on the label! Love it. They’re now my new favorite wine.
The culinary indulgences continued at Rusconi’s American Kitchen, also in Scottsdale. Holy wow. Talk about good food. There were vanilla-scented potatoes which we all could not stop raving about but the truffle mac & cheese is what will bring me back in. If you’re ever in Scottsdale be sure to check out Rusconi’s. Chef Rusconi even created a special Chocolate Decadence dessert made with Brownie Brittle, a new favorite treat. We scored some swanky rides courtesy of Uber, an affordable on-demand car service which is a MUST for a night out. Especially in Arizona where you can’t easily hail a cab.
Besides the great eats and beautiful scenery, it was such a pleasure to hang out with all the other lovely bloggers. Be sure to visit their blogs: Christie from Love from the Oven, Mary from Barefeet In The Kitchen, Ashlee from I’m Topsy Turvy, Kristen from Six Sisters Stuff, Erica from Favorite Family Recipes, Anetta from The Wanderlust Kitchen, Alejandra from Always Order Dessert, Sara from Mom Endeavors, and Katerina from Diethood.
We all got to take home a ridiculously awesome swag bag that felt like Christmas! It included: A super cute palm green spatula from Le Creuset, a nesting beaker style set of measuring cups from OXO, a powdered sugar dusting wand from OXO (genius!), silicone cutting boards from Casabella, Better Zester from kitchenIQ (it catches the zest in an attached tray with measuring lines marked on it!), Food Network magazine subscriptions from Entwine, a box of brownies from Fairytale Brownies, Brownie Brittle, and gorgeous cookies from The Baked Equation!
The Slow Roasted Italian has tons of fun stuff going on this summer! You can join the fun by using the hashtag #TSRISummer on Instagram, Facebook, and/or Twitter for a chance to win one of the weekly $50 Amazon gift cards!
I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)
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