Wednesday, January 22, 2014

For Only the Second Time…

Well, we’ll get back to that later.

It was time to take a break. And, fortunately, the MIM is also home to an acclaimed café that Phoenix Magazine designated as the "Best Locavore Restaurant for 2013"—Café Allegro at the MIM. “The best-kept dining secret in town is inside the Musical Instrument Museum, where the food is affordable and a significant portion of the menu hails from somewhere in Arizona. Chef Chris Lenza seeks out quality foodstuffs, from Yuma farm-raised tilapia to persimmons from Globe” (

“Located in a light-filled space overlooking the museum’s entry courtyard and sculpture, the Cafe serves an inventive menu of great-tasting foods prepared from scratch….
Stations feature global cuisine, local and regional dishes, grilled specialties, freshly made soups and salads, and delicious desserts. The casual self-serve environment provides a unique museum dining experience serving dishes alive with flavor and nutrition” (gfreeinthe

“MIM has partnered with Bon Appétit Management Company…. Taking its role in the community seriously, Bon Appétit makes socially responsible purchasing decisions and uses local, organic produce whenever possible. In an extension of the worldview exhibited throughout the museum’s galleries, Café Allegro takes a comprehensive view of wellness, believing that environment, community, and a creative menu can work together to support each other and contribute to the well-being and enjoyment of our guests” (

Café Allegro received 100% “likes” at and was awarded a Certificate of Excellence 2013 from Trip Advisor.

While there is a set menu that includes a hamburger, an all beef Schreiner’s hot dog, and a marinated chicken breast sandwich, they are best known for their daily “specialty plates”—one local (using Arizona-sourced ingredients) and one global. And our decision was that we would order one of each.

Now before I go further, I need to be very clear about something. I have NO training in food. What (little) I know comes from reading and from watching an endless procession of food-related programs on the Food, Cooking, and Travel Channels. And I have very definite opinions about what I do and don’t like. So keep all that in mind as you read further in this blog.

Chuck chose the Global Plate which on this day was described as “Szechuan-style chicken and shrimp over brown rice with local cabbages and vegetables with a side of fresh fruit.”
I guess that the use of the word “style” absolves them from a charge of false advertising, but to someone who has eaten more than her share of Szechuan food, there was nothing Szechuan about this. The over use of salty soy sauce does not a Chinese dish make. And what was with the chicken wings in the background? They appeared to have been coated with some seasoning that had absolutely no taste.

But, hard to believe, Chuck fared better than did I. The Local Plate was “Two Valley Ranch-raised chicken salad with local organic lettuces, Arizona-grown vegetables, wheat berries, pecans, and Briggs and Edgars organic pears with Rainbow Valley mascarpone cheese and Sphinx Ranch date vinaigrette.” The number of ingredients alone should have been my first clue.
Bear in mind that I observed a number of diners attacking this same salad with relish. I thought it might be the single most dreadful thing I have ever eaten. The chicken was ice cold and I detest ice cold chicken. Especially when it is still covered with ice cold flabby skin. The date vinaigrette was more like an overly sweet paste. The mascarpone cheese added nothing. And I never figured out what the stick-like things on top were. After eating only about a quarter of this I covered the remains with my napkin and quietly took it over to the conveyor that returns dirty plates to the kitchen.

So could two cookies salvage the meal? No.
The quince and mascarpone (left in the photo) tasted undercooked and the goat cheese, oatmeal, and cranberry cookie was dry—as I think are most oatmeal cookies.

So, for only the second time in the five plus years that we have been writing this blog I am awarding a restaurant zero Addies.

Not even Kitty Humbug wanted to be associated with this place.

To review the role of Adler, Kitty Humbug, and the Addie rating system, read the November 14, 2011 blog.


eyad ammar said...

شركة تنظيف بالطائف شركة الهدي افضل شركة نقل عفش بالطائف كذلك هى افضل شركة رش مبيدات بالطائف
شركه الهدى
شركة رش بالطائف
خدمات الطائف
شركة تنظيف بالطائف
شركة تنظيف فلل بالطائف
نظافه عامه بالطائف
شركة تنظيف منازل بالطائف

eyad ammar said...

شركة تنظيف شقق بالطائف
نقل عفش بالطائف
بالطائف شفط بيارات
تسليك مجارى بالطائف
تنظيف خزنات بالطائف
رش مبيدات بالطائف
نقل عفش بخميس مشيط
شركة عزل اسطح بالطائف

eyad ammar said...

ان اردت نقل عفش منزلك بالدمام ابيات الشرقية من اهم شركات نقل العفش بالدمام والخبر والجبيل والقطيف والاحساء
شركة المتحدة
شركة نقل عفش بنجران
شركة نقل عفش بخميس مشيط
شركة نقل عفش بالطائف
شركة نقل عفش بمكة
شركة نقل عفش بينبع
شركة نقل عفش بابها

eyad ammar said...

شركة نقل عفش بالرياض
شركة نقل عفش بجدة
شركة نقل عفش بالدمام
شركة نقل عفش بالمدينة المنورة
شركة نقل عفش ببريدة
شركة نقل عفش بالقصيم
شركة نقل عفش بتبوك