BLK Live Delights and Surprises with Eclectic Menu and Gorgeous Facility
Whether you are coming for a one-of-a-kind live band experience, to enjoy cocktails, or to dine, BLK Live will impress you with every facet of its unique destination. Executive Chef and Manager of BLK Live, Daniel Hackett wears many hats and his creative direction serves to deliver the finest in guest experiences and dining. During a recent media dinner, I had a chance to get acquainted with the BLK Live venue and menu, all in one night!
To set the proverbial stage for the menu at BLK Live, you first must appreciate its beautiful décor. It’s modern rustic, with a few tropic twists for good measure. And there’s a Vegas-style pool, but I’ll get to that later. I immediately felt comfortable and excited with what the menu had to offer, and it certainly did not disappoint. What is with the “BLK” abbreviation? BLK Live has grabbed the monogram-like moniker from black Wagyu cattle which represent the highest of quality in beef in the U.S. And, yes, you’ll find it on the BLK Live menu!
Where Do I Start?
To kick off the night of culinary debauchery, we noshed on lightly friend Brussels sprouts, kissed with balsamic reduction and parmesan, and a kick of thick sliced bacon. The combination of flavors made this entrée the perfect way to introduce us to the BLK Live menu. Our group also thoroughly enjoyed the pork belly appetizer with savory smoked peached and real cherries. What a fantastic dish! Finally, Chef Daniel came out with one of the most fun presentations of appetizers I’ve ever seen – a handful of fried jumbo shrimp that were rolled in coconut, served in a dip that included coconut milk and served in a half coconut shell. Talk about creative! As Chef Daniel pointed out, this appetizer utilizes every part of the coconut!
This media dinner was a departure from anything I’ve participated in before. After our appetizers, Chef Daniel visited individually with each person to get an idea of their likes, dislikes, favorite tastes, textures and spice level preference. He then quickly retreated to the BLK Live kitchen to orchestrate an entrée customized for each guest.
Much to my delight and surprise, Chef Daniel had me pegged culinarily perfectly! I had the White Marble Farms pork chop with a devilishly delicious sweet potato hash and a drizzle of smoked plum sauce. What was so surprising is that had I just been at the restaurant during my own personal dining experience, this is exactly what I would have ordered. It was a wonderful dish, and clearly Chef Daniel is a mind reader.
Another entree that graced the table included a White Marble Farms roasted pork tenderloin with a cheddar bacon polenta and a red wine cherry reduction. It was beautiful! A couple of people enjoyed the large sea scallops with butternut squash puree and smoked apples, and yet another media person received the Snake River Farms Filet with purple mashed potatoes and asparagus topped with fried onions. There were also a few entrees of comfort food-style battered fish and chips, and another entrée with salmon atop cous cous in a dashi broth. All of the entrees were beautifully presented and stood on their own merits.
The desserts were every bit as impressive as the appetizers and entrees. The first tempting dessert was the “cronut.” The fried donut was dunked in cinnamon sugar and topped with vanilla bean ice cream, a Bulleit Bourbon caramel sauce and a candied mint simple syrup. It was every bit as decadent as it sounds! Next was what I think was the dessert cornerstone of BKL Live – the s’more sphere. The dessert arrived aflame at our table and as the outer chocolate melted, it revealed a marshmallow-y center with graham cracker cookie crust and topped with a Bulleit Bourbon caramel sauce. And just because bacon makes everything better, there were also some incredible pieces of maple bacon included. This dessert is a must have, so don’t miss it!
The BLK Experience
Probably the most visually striking thing about BLK Live is that one immediately notices that there is a gorgeous outdoor pool flanked by thatched hut bars and seating. Yes, BLK Live boasts the Aqua Lounge poolside on the weekends with live music and a stunning collection of hand-drawn murals by Roman Pastucha that are so lifelike, one would swear they are photographic images. Bowie and Hendrix never looked so good, and they oversee the various live music stages at BLK Live, along with some other rock icons. It features the largest dining patio in Scottsdale and can accommodate up to 1,000 guests for private parties.Also, there is a new front patio will seat up to 100 people debuting this spring! BLK Live is the hottest spot in the Valley for parties, wedding receptions and corporate functions.
BLK Live is located at 7301 E. Butherus Dr., Scottsdale. Visit www.blkliveaz.com or call (480) 494-5069 for additional information and a schedule of upcoming events.