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Que Syrah, Shiraz: A Tucson Elite Event @ Jonathan’s Cork



Sometimes basic is best, ya know? Which is why this month Elites took to the east-side sans costumes and magicians and fire breathers and hula hoopers and face painters and… and… (I guess that's it!) Restaurant owners Jonathan and Collette Landeen created an intimate experience on the patio of Jonathan's Cork featuring two lesser known wines and some incredible food! But before folks could sip and savor we played a little Y-E-L-P-O! You know the game, five down, across or diagonal, first one to shout YELPO! wins, but instead of numbers and letters, filling these squares were Elite responses to the following: Who is your fave food network chef, and why? You'd be surprised how many people like Ina Garten, it's not just me which is a huge releif because I've been told I have an unhealthy obsession. 

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Once we awarded winners some prizes the tasting began. On one side Jonathan taught half of our group the differences between Syrah and Shiraz. Talking a bit about the origins and notes, yelpers had the opportunity to pair both wines with some tasty eats. Blackened chicken anyone? Or maybe jalapeno-brined bacon-wrapped shrimp is more your flavor. Whatever folks decided to feast on, there were no empty wine glasses, Jonathan has a knack for keeping people hydrated! On the other side of the patio Bar Manager Jeff made a cool cocktail, the Aviation, and talked about his history with the joint. Get this, he's been there for 13 years! That's some staying power. But when your mom is a cocktail waitress it only makes sense that you'll find a home behind the bar!

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After each group got their drink on, folks took a glass of their fave back to their seats for a grilled romaine salad, a meatloaf slider and some mac and cheese that puts the blue box to shame. Seriously, I've never heard Elites so quiet before, they must have been writing reviews in their mind as they munched. No meal is complete without something sweet, right? So Jonathan and Collette brought out their famous almond roca in cute little to-go sacks. No description will do this crack-candy justice. Go and get some NOW, because they only make it during the holidays and you'll be sad if you need to wait a year because they ran out… and they will! 

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Before we ended our back to basics evening trying lesser known wines and amazing menu options, Elites had a chance to show their smart side in a game I called "Syrah, Shiraz or Neither." A pair of Yelp ELites was given a word and they had to decide whether it was a European city (where most Syrah is produced) an Australian city (where most Shiraz is produced) or neither. One Elite with a bike horn, the other with a dog toy, it was a blast to watch people "buzz in" and test their geography skills while folks went head to head until we had a winner. Everyone won that night though, thanks to Jonathan and Collette who opened their doors to our yelpy crew and dished up an amazing experience. Don't beleive me? Read the reviews! Their staff helping us was incredible at making sure we were hydrated and fed, and Billy K gets props for always seeming to capture great shots!

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See you at the next one!  

End

Corey D

Tucson Community Manager & 

Dreamer Of All Things Almond Roca! 

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