Localists arrived at Joe's Real BBQ Thursday, November 13, poised for a fun night of gallivanting through Gilbert and sampling some of the gems that the town has to offer. Upon arriving at Joe's, they were lead to the charmingly lit patio to enjoy co-owner Tad Peelen's hand selected buffet that included smoked lamb, bison, and turkey, as well as craveable smoked veggies, mac-n-cheese, and a soda bar. Once everyone had filled their plates, Tad led a mini history on downtown Gilbert and how it has become such a fun and spirited destination within the metro phoenix area. He also previewed for us some of what is on the horizon for Gilbert, as far as new restaurants and businesses. From Joe's, folks headed over to Joyride Taco House for a tasting of 4 top shelf tequilas. The pours were plentiful, and the hosts charming, and the atmosphere jovial. Localists were treated to tastings of tequilas with hints of smoke and saltiness that paired nicely with Joyride's delicious salsas and guacamole. After enjoying the Joyride patio and the crisp autumn air, localists were ready to venture down the street to explore Art Intersection.
At Art Intersection, the group was lead through a tour of current exhibits, as well as the gallery's on-going silent auction "Off the Wall." The auction showed several beautiful photographs, some of which employed historic printing processes to create one of a kind pieces of art. Localists also got to explore the Art Intersection print lab, where folks can take classes in photography and dark room film development.
The evening closed out with a delightful dessert offering from chef LaDawn of Liberty Market, who shared with us her take on the classic holiday favorite, chocolate oranges. The desert consisted of layers of white chocolate panna cotta, clementine gelee, dark chocolate mousse, and a dark chocolate disk adorned with gold leaf. Placed into the glass was a pipette of Grand Marnier to tie all of the flavors together. The evening ended on the picturesque patio, with localists reflecting on their Gilbert experiences, past and present, as well as where they hope to visit in the future.
Overall, the event was a great opportunity to witness the revival of downtown Gilbert and the local restaurant scene that has developed there. Next time you're looking for a fun new restaurant to try or a night out on the town, consider heading to Gilbert!
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