Z’Tejas Chile Fest
By Greg Barraza | Photos provided by Z’Tejas
Z’Tejas Southwestern Grill | 3333 Bristol St. | Costa Mesa CA | 92626
Dear friends and family:
I have to apologize in advance. I will not answer my cell phone, nor will I be home. I have a very good reason for my absence: I will be at Z’Tejas enjoying their new Chile Fest menu daily. Normally, I would not spend all my time at one particular eatery; in fact, this has only happened to me only once before. That said, last night I visited Z’Tejas when they previewed their Chili Fest Menu, and I was the one of the last ones to leave for several reasons.
One: I became interested in the purpose of the menu; this was not a traditional “new menu launch”; this menu launch was done for philanthropic reasons. Proceeds from this menu will be donated to the Blind Children’s Learning Center.
Two: The second reason I refused to leave was the food! When one reads “Chile Fest” he or she may believe the food will be spicy, but that’s not the case with this menu by any means. Chef Danny Stevens uses the natural zest of the chiles to compliment the meal and drinks, fusing a quintessence of flavors to provide a dining experience that will leave one intoxicated by its deliciousness. Truly.
So if you really need to find me in case of an absolute emergency, I will where Z’Tejas Southwestern Grill at South Coast Plaza is launching its annual Chile Fest, an homage to the famous Hatch, New Mexico festival, Sept 3 – Sept 16 and $1 from each entrée ordered off of the special menu will benefit the Blind Children’s Learning Center.
Executive Chef Daniel Stevens says the idea behind Chile Fest is to celebrate the versatile role the fruit plays in the culinary world (its internal, edible seeds qualify it as a fruit rather than a vegetable). Each menu item on the Chile Fest menu, including desserts and cocktails, contain a variety of Chile pepper. Among the items are a Tamarind Chicken Salad with sweet pickled Hatch Chiles; Roasted Hatch New Mexico Chiles stuffed with seared beef tenderloin, jack cheese and caramelized onions topped with a chipotle corn relish; Herb Hatch Chili Glazed Mahi Mahi; and Pork Medallion Sliders served on a jalapeño roll topped with green Chile pineapple chimichurri and New Mexico slaw. The featured dessert is the Hatch Chile Coconut Flan served with fresh berries and whipped cream, special cocktails including the Smokin’ Margarita (Herradura Anejo, DeKuyper Peach, Grand Marnier, fresh lemon juice, agave nectar and “an added kick”) and Z’Smash (Herradura Anejo, fresh oranges, fresh lemons, mint and agave nectar).
“We’re delighted to team up with the Blind Children’s Learning Center to launch this greatly anticipated annual event,” said General Manager Matthew Scroggins. “Chef Danny has assembled a strong menu that is sure to appeal to those who appreciate all range of Chile peppers, strong bold flavors and quality ingredients. We hope to a generate tremendous response from the dining public as it directly correlates with the donation to this important nonprofit.”
Established in 1962, the nonprofit Blind Children’s Learning Center is dedicated to helping blind and visually impaired youths achieve their full potential and lead lives of independence. Their holistic approach begins when the child is born and continues throughout their development until they graduate from high school. The organization’s extended services are offered both at the Center and in public schools.
Z’Tejas Southwestern Grill offers a wide array of fresh, flavorful and innovative menu items inspired by culinary influences from Louisiana, Texas, California and Mexico. The restaurant’s interior features an exhibition kitchen, private dining room, mahogany bar, wrought iron detailing, handcrafted tile work, copper accents, jewel-toned fabric lined booths and flattering amber-colored lighting. Al fresco dining is available on the restaurant’s 85-seat heated patio. Z’Tejas Southwestern Grill is open daily for lunch and dinner; half-price appetizers and drink specials are offered during happy hour. Z’Tejas Southwestern Grill is located on the east side of South Coast Plaza (3333 S. Bristol Street, Costa Mesa). For more information, call (714) 979-7469 or visit www.ztejas.com, http://www.facebook.com/ZTejasSouthwesternGrill, http://www.twitter.com/ZTejas.
BLIND CHILDREN TO “SEE” HOW RAW INGREDIENTS COOK UP INTO THEIR FAVORITE FOODS
(Z’Tejas Chef To Give Visually Impaired Youth Food For Thought)
CONTACT: GROFF-HINMAN (562) 491-1000
WHAT: 12 youngsters from the Blind Children’s Learning Center will get the opportunity to “see” how raw ingredients transform into their favorite foods when Z’Tejas Chef Danny Stevens hosts this sensory exercise followed by lunch. While most children learn to identify various foods by sight, the visually impaired use their compensatory senses like touch, smell and taste. The children will be handling a range of whole chili peppers, chunks of cheese, corn cobs, bowls of common ingredients like pieces of chicken and other proteins so that they can begin identifying them and the role they will play in the lunch that they will enjoy afterward.
Wednesday, Sept 4, 2013 | 10:30 a.m.
South Coast Plaza (near carousel)
3333 S. Bristol St.
FUNDRAISER: The event will serve as a kickoff to a 2 week fundraiser ending Sept 16 called
Chile Fest whereby $1 from the sale of all items on Z’Tejas’ special menu will be donated to the Blind Children’s Learning Center.
BKGRD: Established in 1962, the nonprofit Blind Children’s Learning Center is dedicated to helping blind and visually impaired youths achieve their full potential and lead lives of independence. Their holistic approach begins when the child is born and continues throughout their development until they graduate from high school. The organization’s extended services are offered both at the Center and in public schools.