The family is in town for the holidays and you really hate to spend every moment in the kitchen, cooking over a hot stove. Instead, enjoy the spirit of Christmas and simply being with your family by booking a reservation at one of these great Phoenix or Scottsdale-area restaurants for Christmas Eve or Christmas Day dining.
Ben & Jack's Steakhouse
Ben & Jack's Steakhouse will be open in Old Town Scottsdale for both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day dinner. You can order one of the restaurant's signature steaks or choose the special prix fixe menu for the holidays. The special menu features appetizer options of Canadian bacon, baked clams, fried calamari or soup. Salad options are a Caesar or mixed green salad. Entrée selections include rib eye steak, prime rib, New York sirloin, veal chop, lamb chops, Chilean sea bass, grilled Norwegian wild salmon, chicken parmesan or chicken Francese, plus several vegetable selections. For dessert, you can select from apple strudel, carrot cake, cheesecake, chocolate mousse or pecan pie.
The prix fixe menu is $85.95 per person. Visit online at www.benandjackssteakhouse.com or call 480.947.7900 for reservations. 4180 N. Drinkwater Boulevard, Scottsdale.
The Boulders, a Waldorf Astoria Resort
The Boulders is located north of Scottsdale in Carefree. The resort will be serving both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day dinner. Palo Verde Restaurant is serving Christmas Eve dinner from 6 to 9:30 p.m. on Tuesday, December 24, 2013. Palo Verde will offer a 3-course prix fixe menu. Items on the menu include chipotle scented sweet potato soup with Boulders' Honey-infused crème fraiche and scallions; organic Arizona field greens with prickly pear balsamic dressing; jalapeño bacon wrapped filet; ancho agave crusted salmon with Achiote rice; yule log of dark chocolate cake with chocolate mousse; and candied cranberries with chocolate butter cream. The menu is $58 per person. Call 480.488.7317 for reservations.
If you prefer to dine out on Christmas Day, you can check out Latilla Restaurant, serving a 4-course prix fixe menu on December 25 from 4 to 8 p.m. Menu items include Maine lobster bisque, chili dusted beef salad with Point Reyes Bleu Cheese roasted free range turkey with wild sage giblet gravy and sides; grilled Black Angus filet with salsa verde scented potatoes; chocolate mascarpone Christmas log with Kahlua Crème Anglaise and walnut ice cream. The four-course menu is $75 per person, adults; $29, kids 5 to 12; free for kids 4 and younger. Call 480.488.7317 for reservations. Visit online at www.theboulders.com. 34631 N. Tom Darlington Drive, Carefree.
Fairmont Scottsdale Princess
The Fairmont Scottsdale Princess is a magical place with a train, 4-story musical tree, Desert Ice Holiday Rink, Lagoon Lights, carolers and more. You'll also be able to enjoy great meals at the resort for Christmas Day, Wednesday, December 25, 2013.
For those who want to eat early, you can head to Ironwood American Kitchen and Princess Falls Patio for brunch, where you can find offerings from all the resort's restaurants. Selections include Southwestern omelet station, maple butternut squash soup, carved Four Peaks-brined turkey, green chili chicken tamales, shrimp and cheese tamales, shrimp and crab cake sliders, smoked salmon, prime rib, seared ahi tuna, chorizo cornbread stuffing, mashed potato bar, breakfast favorites, salads, cheeses, fresh fruit and a selection of winter desserts. The seatings are from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Christmas Day. The buffet is $75, adults; $27.50, kids 6 to 12; free for kids 5 and younger. Reservations are required by calling 480.585.2694.
The resort's restaurants are also offering special menus for Christmas dinner:
- Michael Mina's BOURBON STEAK is serving from a prix fixe menu with offerings such as seared scallop and glazed onion chestnut soup, black bass with lobster béarnaise, rib eye pave with Romanesco cauliflower. Dessert is gingerbread and eggnog. Dinner is 5:30 to 9 p.m. The prix fixe menu is $85. You ca add wine pairings for $40 per person.
- The Grill at TPC Scottsdale serves dinner overlooking the 18th green of the TPC Scottsdale Stadium Course. The prix fixe menu includes a first course of butternut squash bisque or salad. The main course options include Diestel turkey with chestnut stuffing, whipped potatoes and maple glaze yams; Atlantic salmon; prime rib; or braised short ribs with pappardelle pasta. Desserts include pumpkin pie, apple cobbler or pecan pie. The prix fixe menu, served on Christmas Day from 3 to 9 p.m., is $55, adults; $25, kids 6 to 12; free, kids 5 and younger.
- Ironwood American Kitchen is serving dinner from their regular menu and also has a prix fixe menu available for Christmas Day. The first course includes roasted butternut squash soup, Bering Sea snow crab, or golden beet and baby gem salad. Entrée choices include Diestel Farm turkey, Pacific black bass or braised pork shank osso buco. Dessert options include pumpkin cheesecake or pecan pie with cinnamon ice cream. Prices are a la carte for adults and kids 6 to 12 years.
- La Hacienda by Richard Sandoval presents its modern Mexican dishes for Christmas. Guests can order from the regular menu or try the Christmas special: Pavo en Mole Rojo roasted turkey breast, sweet corn tamale with Rajas lobster, mushroom-braised green beans and pork belly plantain cranberry sauce. The special is $45, adults; $22, kids 6 to 12; free, kids 5 and younger. Dinner is available from 5:30 to 9 p.m.
For dinner reservations, call 480.585.4848. You can visit online at www.scottsdaleprincess.com. 7575 E. Princess Drive, Scottsdale.
The Phoenician, a AAA Five Diamond resort in Scottsdale, is all decked out for the holidays. You can still join one of the evening cactus garden light tours on Wednesday, December 25, 2013, Friday, December 27 or Saturday, December 28. The free tour begins at 6 p.m. at Grape and Grain retail shop. The narrated tour takes you on an exploration of the resort's 250 varieties of cacti, all adorned with Christmas lights. Call 480.423.2572 for reservations.
For Christmas dining, you can enjoy dinner on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day at J & G Steakhouse. The 3-course prix fixe menu, served from 5 to 10 p.m., includes butternut squash salad, Skuna Bay salmon, grilled New York strip steak, warm chocolate cake and red velvet ice cream sundae. The menu is $54 per adult. Reservations are required. Call 480.214.8000.
You can also enjoy Christmas Day Brunch on Wednesday, December 25, 2013 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The brunch will feature prime rib and honey-glazed ham carving stations; breakfast classics; sushi and raw bar; fruit; pasta and risotto bar; and a selection of house-made pastries and desserts. Unlimited sparkling wine is included. The brunch is $95 per adult; half price for kids 3 to 12 years. Reservations are required. Call 480.423.2530 or visit online at www.thephoenician.com. 6000 E. Camelback Road, Scottsdale.
Royal Palms Resort & Spa
Royal Palms Resort & Spa is serving both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day meals at the newly remodeled T. Cook's. Christmas Eve at T. Cook's is a 3-course prix fixe menu served from 5 to 9:30 p.m. The same menu will be available on Christmas Day from 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.
The menu features starts such as duck confit, chestnut agnolotti with Dungeness crab, lobster bisque or day boat scallops. Entrées include California halibut, free range turkey, filet mignon, Colorado lamb loin, Loch Duart salmon and market vegetables. Desserts on the menu include dark chocolate roulade; warm apple and walnut torte; and dark chocolate mousse with gingerbread mille feuille. The prix fixe menu is $80 per person; $29 for kids 6 to 12; free for kids 5 and younger.
There is also a Palmera Christmas Day buffet, served from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, December 25, 2013. The buffet includes a selection of breakfast items, starters, greens, soups, and sides. Entrée offerings include a chilled seafood bar, Loch Duart salmon, cioppino, penne with blackened chicken, turkey and New York strip steaks. Dessert offerings include chocolate decadence, cranberry cheesecake, grapefruit tarts, hazelnut torte and assorted cookies. The buffet is $65 for adults; $20 for kids 6 to 12; free for kids 5 and younger.
Call 602.808.0766 to reserve your spot. Visit online at www.royalpalmshotel.com/dining/restaurant-offers-events. 5200 E. Camelback Road, Phoenix.
Rusconi's American Kitchen
Rusconi's American Kitchen is known for fresh, local ingredients. Chef Rusconi is offering a 3-course prix fixe menu on Christmas Eve, Tuesday, December 24, 2013 beginning at 5 p.m. First course is a choice of baby spinach with warm bacon dressing, lobster bisque or Prince Edward Island mussels. Second course is a choice of wood roasted beef tenderloin, or tomato and herb crusted rack of lamb. Finish the evening with raspberry and dark chocolate bread pudding or Meyer lemon sorbet.
The Christmas Eve dinner at Rusconi's is $45 per person. You can make reservations by calling 480.483.0009 or booking online at www.rusconiskitchen.com. 10637 N. Tatum Boulevard, Suite 101B, Phoenix.
Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain
Sanctuary is a luxury resort on the side of Camelback Mountain in Paradise Valley. The resort's signature restaurant, elements, is serving up a 4-course dinner on Christmas Day from noon to 9 p.m., prepared by executive chef and Food Network star Beau MacMillan. Options include smoked salmon 'Benedict' with savory French toast; wild mushroom and truffle soup with spot prawn ravioli; miso glazed Chilean sea bass with forbidden rice, charred zucchini and coconut lobster broth; and smoked pork tenderloin with sweet potatoes, bacon braised cabbage and cherry garlic sticky glaze. Desserts include brandied eggnog bread pudding and mini pumpkin pies with chantilly cream.
The dinner is $75, adults; $25, kids 12 and younger. Reservations are required. Call 480.607.2300. Visit online at www.sanctuaryaz.com. 5700 E. McDonald Drive, Paradise Valley.
Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Resort & Spa
Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Resort & Spa is serving up a special 4-course Christmas feast on Christmas Day, Wednesday, December 25, 2013 from 4 to 8 p.m. at Ko'Sin restaurant. Specialties include winter rabbit bisque, medallions of caribou with saffron potatoes, roasted duck breast with Foie Gras sourdough dressing and prime rib. Dessert options include peppermint cheesecake, triple chocolate yule log and winter pear torte.
The 4-course Christmas meal is $68 for adults; $60 for seniors; $25 for kids 12 and younger. Reservations are required. Call 602.385.5726. Visit online at www.wildhorsepassresort.com. 5594 W. Wild Horse Pass Boulevard, Chandler.
Taggia at FireSky Resort and Spa
Taggia at FireSky Resort and Spa serves classic Italian meals in its dining room and on the outdoor patio with firepits. Taggia will serve a prix fixe menu for both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day dinner. The Primi (appetizers) includes Zuppa di Baccala (salt corn chowder) or insalata di pesce (chilled seafood salad0; Secondi (entrée) offerings include lasagna; Zuppa di Pesce (seafood stew); or linguine fra diavola (shrimp). Finally, the dessert course includes a choice of either crema bucciata (crème brulée) or gianduja mousse (chocolate mousse with hazelnuts).
The prix fixe menu is served both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day from noon to 9 p.m. The cost is $48 per person. Add wine pairings for an additional $22 per person. Reservations are required by calling 480.424.6095. Visit online at www.taggiascottsdale.com. 4925 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale.
Westin Kierland Resort & Spa
The Westin Kierland Resort & Spa in North Scottsdale offers a nightly light show called PaintScaping. PaintScaping is a series of 3-D images set to holiday music. The shows are each night through December 31, 2013 at 6:30, 7, 7:30 and 8 p.m. The show is free and open to the public. You'll also see fun characters, can enjoy free s'mores roasting and live entertainment.
You can also enjoy great Christmas dining at Westin Kierland. You can celebrate Christmas Eve at deseo with either the regular menu or a 3-course prix fixe holiday menu. The Latin-influenced cuisine on the Christmas Eve menu includes Mar y Tierra (Sea and Land) tastes of crab cakes and beef empanada, Pistachio lamb with quinoa and morel mushrooms. The meal ends with Rum Chata flan with dulce de leche ice cream. Dinner is served in deseo from 6 to 9 p.m. on Tuesday, December 24. The special Christmas Eve menu is $69. Reservations are required. Call 480.624.1202.
For Christmas Day, you can join the Christmas Day Feast at Nellie Cashman's Monday Club Cafe at Westin Kierland. The restaurant will serve the Christmas feast from noon to 9 p.m. (last seating is at 8 p.m.) on Wednesday, December 25, 2013.
The buffet at Nellie Cashman's will include a chilled seafood station, chef-attended salad station, artisan cheeses, buttercup bisque, blue cornmeal crusted salmon, chef-attended stir-fry station and carving stations with beef tenderloin and slow-roasted turkey. The dessert buffet will feature cream puffs, warm spiced bourbon pecan tart, cranberry apple crumb tart, flourless chocolate dome, eggnog cheesecake, buche de noel, Kahlua chocolate cake, apple strudel, cheese strudel and holiday cookies. The buffet feast is $65, adults; $25, kids 5 to 12; free, kids 4 and younger. Reservations are required. Call 480.624.1202. Visit online at www.kierlandresort.com. 6902 E. Greenway Parkway, Scottsdale.
If you're looking for a day trip out of Phoenix after Santa visits the kids, you can head to the red rocks of Sedona for a Christmas Day meal at L'Auberge de Sedona. The AAA Four Diamond L'Auberge restaurant is located on one of Arizona's most romantic properties. You can enjoy intimate creek-side dining as you feast on the 4-course prix fixe menu. Dishes include Maine Lobster with baby carrots, orange bitters, quinoa, carrot-lobster coral purée; Creekside Beef Tartare with house-made cider mustard, egg yolk powder and taro root chip; Sweet Potato Ravioli; Egg Nog Crème Brûlée. The meal is $95 per person. If you want to stay overnight, lodge rooms start at $295 and cottages start from $429. Call 855.905.5745 for reservations and information or visit online at www.lauberge.com.