Originally called West of Western, Devoured is held at the Phoenix Art Museum, and some combination of my girlfriends and I have attended this event annually for years. I sat last year out because Josh and I had started looking into buying a house and most of my time and energy was zapped. So, I was little surprised yesterday to see just how much the event had changed in the past 2 years. First and foremost, the average age of the attendee seems to have gone down substantially. With the introduction of taquila, vodka, beer, etc - it felt a lot more like a bar atmosphere. I think that is unfortunate. I was also a little shocked by how some of the outdoor art at the Phoenix Art Museum was being treated. Sculptures are not tables, nor are they trash cans.
Putting this aside, the food did not disappoint. There were lots of great dishes being offered and all of us walked away full and happy. Because the atmosphere has changed so much and due to there being so many more people attending, I did feel as if I missed out on really getting to hear the details of what went into each dish. I especially missed out on learning about the wines that I tested. Part of the fun in wine tasting is hearing about where the wine comes from and the distinct flavors that make it unique. I really like Modern Steak, Switch, San Tan Brewing Company, The Parlor, The Vig and Roka Akor. I think that my favorite item of the day was the very first thing that Erin and I tasted from Frank and Alberts. It was jumbo shrimp on top of a corn and jicama salad. Yum.
Corn dogs and Cotton candy
I loved, loved, loved all of the beautiful displays and flowers that the each restaurant used to decorate their space.
Erin and I took a break from the heat and wandered around a fashion exhibit in the museum. It was REALLY neat. Lots of old designer coats and dresses as well as shoes, riding gear, etc. It was nice to get out of the sun and cool off. It was even better that there was such a neat exhibit to wander through.
At the end of the day, I think that all of us agreed that we had an excellent time being together, tasting good food and having some wine. Although I am not particularly happy about the direction that the event is going, it still made for a lovely day with some of my favorite ladies.