Any time the words food and Arizona find themselves in the same sentence near Jamey Whetstone, you’re bound to hear the name Mark Tarbell pop out of his mouth. The respect Jamey has for Tarbell is apparent in his next few remarks as he speaks of Mark’s renowned wine list, killer menu, and of course his impact on the Arizona food scene. Jamey remembers watching Mark Tarbell on Food Network’s Iron Chef America in 2007, and thinking “I’ve got to know this guy.” And who wouldn’t want to make friends with a foodie legend. But at the end of the day, Mark is also just a really cool guy. He learned from the ground up, washing dishes and baking bread. Then, the travel bug bit in his teenage years and he couldn’t resist, so he set sail for Europe. Soaking up as much knowledge about food and wine as he could while living in Paris, he worked at La Varenne École de Cuisine and concurrently studied wine at l'Académie du Vin. His life of adventure and love for the culinary world is at the heart of his career. As Jamey says, “I think that when you love what you do, you have a true potential to create something that everyone will love.” And when you have celebrities such as Muhammad Ali, Julia Child, and the Dalai Lama calling to book a table at your restaurant, you must be doing something right.
On Wednesday, April 15th there will be a reservation under the name Whetstone at Mark Tarbell’s eponymous restaurant in Phoenix, Arizona. From 4:00pm to close, Tarbell’s will be offering a special pairing of Whetstone wines and Mark’s cuisine in addition to their regular menu. Jamey’s first stop will be to Tarbell’s The Wine Store for a tasting and bottle signing of Whetstone wines from 5:30pm to 6:30pm. Give The Wine Store a shout at 602.955.7730 for more details. Following the bottle signing, Jamey will head next door to Tarbell’s restaurant and will be on the floor and table-side for a more intimate discussion of the wine pairings from 6:30pm to close. You can make your reservations by calling Tarbell’s at 602.955.8100. Jamey will be stoked to see you there!