The fabulous colors and flavors of Mediterranean cuisine are thriving in the Arizona desert with the arrival of Trattoria Locale, a tapas-style dinner menu at the Double U Café at Canyon Ranch in Tucson.
“We know that the Mediterranean regional diet is a healthy one, and in Canyon Ranch kitchens we’ve been adhering to the Mediterranean philosophy for years,” says Corporate Chef Scott Uehlein. “Now we’re really bringing the feel and the flavors home to our guests.”
The small-plate fare is the featured dinner menu at the Double U on most days. The guest response has been overwhelmingly positive, according to Chef Scott. “With fourteen selections, there’s something for everyone.”
Fresh, local & seasonal
The emphasis (as always) is on the freshest, best ingredients – “very whole-grain and veggie-centric – we showcase the vegetables. We’re not eliminating animal protein, just de-emphasizing it.”
Some Trattoria favorites bring a little something extra to the table. For example: The pizza dough is made with Hayden Mills Heritage Flour, an Arizona-based venture involving local farmers and “green” organizations that preserve and promote heritage grains, grown sustainably to suit the climate.
The flour is milled from drought-resistant White Sonora wheat, stone-ground in Tempe, Arizona, and is sold in the Ranch store. “We had a nutritional analysis performed on this flour and were really impressed,” said Chef Scott. “Although it’s a white flour, it’s ground complete, hulls and all, so it’s high in fiber.”
The crust isn’t the only thing about the pizza generating rave reviews. “We import San Marzano tomatoes from Italy – simply because I think they are the best on the planet – and we hand-press them on site to make the sauce,” said Chef Scott. Other super-special ingredients include a regional bresaola (air-cured beef without nitrates) and olive oil from Queen Creek Olive Oils in Arizona.
“I’ve had pizza in Italy, and I can tell you, this is as close as you’ll ever come to it over here.”
- Made fresh daily ricotta cheese
- Warm olives & focaccia
- Seasonal melon & bresaola
- Grilled artichokes with Romano dipping sauce
- Garbanzo & vegetable salad with octopus
- Pizza made with Hayden Mills heritage flour, San Marzano tomato sauce & fresh mozzarella cheese (Note: gluten-free crust available upon request)
- Tomatoes, fennel, ricotta & pasta
- Zucchini, tomatoes, olives & shrimp
- Quinoa cucumber garbanzo salad with sea bream
- Caramelized mushrooms, potato & New York steak
- Eggplant, tomatoes, olives & chicken
- Zabaglione with fresh fruit
Trattoria Locale is served most nights at the Double U Café in Tucson; Wednesday is Mexican Fiesta, and Friday is French Bistro.