By: The Food Hunter
Set back from the main road that runs through beautiful Sedona is the recently remodeled Amara Resort & Spa. The tree lined Kimpton property on the banks of Oak Creek has recently undergone an extensive remodel. The new look is modern-native with detailed accents throughout the property and in the guests rooms, that match the surrounding dessert terrain.
The resort's beautiful heated negative edge pool is located off the lobby and offers amazing views of the red rocks.
There's also a large grassy courtyard with comfy chairs and fire pits. This is a perfect spot to relax with a good book or enjoying a craft margarita or agave cocktail from the hotel's signature restaurant SaltRock Southwest Kitchen.
Under the helm of Chef Massimo De Francesca, SaltRock delivers Southwest style cuisine using only the freshest ingredients. The menu is fun and casual offering items like a make it yourself guacamole kit, tortillas and deviled eggs along with more formal entrees. Dine outdoors for unspoiled views or indoors where live music is offered every Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
Chef Massimo prepared for us a 10+ course tasting menu showcasing some of the more popular menu items, starting with the house made yucca rolls and salsa.
Deviled eggs are served on a bed of whole grain mustard and topped with a bacon onion marmalade and pasilla-maple syrup. A small bite that packs a powerful flavor punch.
Next up was a delicious corn duo. Grilled corn soup with cilantro creme and tortilla strips was served with a side of grilled corn on top of spicy aioli sprinkled with cotija cheese. Being a huge corn fan this was one of my favorite tastings.
The corn was followed by pine needle smoked oyster mushrooms topped with a pine nut gremolata and a smear of Mexican chocolate. With the pine needles still smoking on the plate, this was by far one of the coolest food presentations I've seen in awhile.
The fried yucca marinated in mojo was served with a queso blanco dipping sauce. This was a fun treat similar to traditional fries but much tastier in my opinion.
We tasted mini lamb & goat cheese tacos topped with a tomatillo-apple salsa next which were absolutely yummy.
Chef Massimo does a unique take on the traditional tamale. Thick pieces of beef barbacoa which have been rolled in masa are cut into rings and served with mole-demi glace, bacon braised black beans and truffle parsnips.
I tend to skip chicken on most menus as it is usually bland and boring. This is not the case at SaltRock, marinated chicken breast is served with spinach, cilantro-jalapeno risotto and grilled asparagus topped with a pignon sauce & pomegranate seeds. A delicious entree choice for sure.
Thankfully portions were small so I was able to enjoy Chef's chili chocolate torte with chopped peanuts, a thick peanut butter sauce and caramelized banana's. The chocolate peanut butter lover in me was in heaven with this dessert.
If you want to experience all the Southwest has to offer in both food and views your next trip to Sedona should include a stay at the beautiful Amara Resort and dinner at SaltRock.
SaltRock Southwest Kitchen
100 Amara Lane
Sedona, Az 86336
This meal was provided complimentary. However, all opinions and comments are my own.