If you haven’t heard of The Vig, you may have been living under a rock. Why, you ask? Because it’s “the spot” in the Valley for fun, friendly, upscale neighborhood dining. Come for the patio, come for the fun, come for the live music, or for the bocce ball at certain locations, and you’re guaranteed a good time, a comfortable atmosphere, and delicious food and beverage.
My last visit was to the McCormick Ranch location of The Vig since I hadn’t had the pleasure of heading to this one quite yet. Nestled right in the middle of the beautiful McCormick Ranch neighborhood, the bright and inviting sign basically says, “here I am, world! Come and enjoy”. I couldn’t wait to get inside and order some of the famous treats I had heard so much about. We ended up on the spacious patio, with lounge-like accommodations, plenty of table space, and televisions broadcasting the latest sports happenings. The misters made the evening breeze more prominent and proved that a summer night in Arizona doesn’t always have to be hot! This was our first good decision of the evening . And thankfully, our fun and friendly server was the perfect pilot for our journey; making recommendations all along the way!
We started with two speciality cocktails. The first was the Vig Manhattan with Bulleit Bourbon, Carpano Antica Sweet Vermouth, milk stout reduction, and walnut bitters. The other recommendation we gladly went with was the Irish Exit with Jameson Whiskey, Amaro Montenegro, plum bitter, ginger beer, and lime. Both drinks were incredibly refreshing and crisp for a summer night and fit perfectly with the fun and friendly atmosphere. Each had their own flare and twist on the normal cocktail it reflected, the Vig Manhattan took a sweet turn to the norm, and the Irish Exit was an Irish twist to a Moscow mule. Time to move on to an appetizer!
Although it was hard to pick from the appetizers because everything looked so irresistible, I couldn’t refrain from my craving for a good, savory dip! We ordered the Artichoke, Kale, and Roasted Jalapeño Dip served with tortilla chips and fresh pita. This incredibly cheesy, flavorful dish is brought out on a piping hot cast iron skillet and stays nice and hot the entire time you enjoy. I couldn’t get enough of the depth of flavor and the spicy, smoky kick offered up by the roasted jalapeño. Not to mention the sinfully satisfying cheese that made this the perfect dish to share!
For entrees, we started with the Spicy Maple Glazed Salmon. This dish went beyond my expectations and took us on a train to flavor-town! Served with soba noodles, broccolini, red pepper, lemon beurre blanc, and sesame chili oil, the crunch and perfection of the glaze was a glorious compliment to every bite. The noodles were a welcomed bed of flavor and the broccolini and peppers were an addition that made the profile of flavors even more dynamic. This is certainly a dish that I could eat every night. I’ll have to ask for the recipe although I’m sure I could never duplicate! I guess I’ll just have to come back to The Vig more often! We also ordered the famed Lean & Green Steak salad and it certainly held up to all the hype. We had our flat iron steak cooked perfectly to medium rare (the way steak will shine the most) and I was truly impressed with the seasoning being classic but in the perfect proportion to where the steak was the star of the show. This salad certainly is one that could be enjoyed even without the steak! Along with the steak, it had spring mix, cherry tomatoes to provide acidity, arugula for an aromatic element, zucchini squash, gorgonzola, parmesan, red wine vinaigrette, and aged balsamic. This ideal mix of savory cheeses and deep acidic flavors from the dressings and tomatoes, were exactly what the steak needed to take this dish over the top!
We couldn’t resist a dessert on this beautiful Saturday evening. Something ice cold and full of flavor? The Vig has you covered. We absolutely melted over their offering of the Mason Jar Banana Cream Pie! This dish is vanilla sponge cake, salted caramel, vanilla ice cream, and cinnamon, topped with whipped cream and candied bacon. The cake was offered in the middle and we dove deeper in to the jar where the ice cream rested at the bottom. The surprises kept on coming! And the candied bacon was the perfect salty and sweet topping to cut through the sweetness of the vanilla cake and sugary addition. There’s nothing better than ending your evening with a little bacon! YUM!
I can’t wait to make each and every Vig location in to my local hang out. I hope to see you all there super soon!
Cheers and Bon Appétit, Food Lovers!