New and returning restaurants will vie for the title of best Salsa, Tequila & Taco in Southern Arizona this Labor Day Weekend
The definitive competition to discover Southern Arizona's new reigning culinary champions of salsa, tequila and tacos returns this Labor Day Weekend to La Encantada Shopping Center. The 9th Annual Salsa, Tequila & Taco Challenge invites guests to sample unique culinary creations from over 40 of Southern Arizona's top restaurants, breweries and distilleries, then cast their votes for their new favorite 2019 champions.
This event celebrates the diversity of Southern Arizona's growing culinary community. Proceeds from the event will support the Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance's creative community arts programming as well as the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona's efforts to end hunger.
The 9th Annual event features an array of new competitors including Benson City Grill, Proof Artisanal Pizza & Pasta, Peppersauce Kitchen, Daniela's Cooking, and more. Winners from previous years will also be returning including Angie's Kick Ass Salsa,
Quail Creek Country Club and the Ritz Carlton Dove Mountain. Guests will be able to cast their votes throughout the night to help crown the new 2019 People's Choice winners in the categories of Salsa, Tequila and Taco. A team of distinguished local guest judges will also be casting their votes onsite.
Live entertainment will keep guests singing and dancing throughout the night. Performances include Folklorico Dancing from Ballet Folklorico, Latin Fusion Music from Santa Pachita on the main stage, and the charismatic Flamenco group Troy Gray Duo.
Tickets for the 9th Annual Salsa, Tequila & Taco Challenge are on sale now. Admission Tickets are available for $55 or enjoy early access at 6PM with a V.I.P. Admission Ticket for only $85 and enjoy valet parking, a tequila toast and a commemorative shot glass. Both ticket levels grant access to all of the participating restaurants and libations.
2019 Participating Restaurants & Menus:
3 Amigos Tequila
Cucumber Jicama Tequila Cocktail- Tequila, lime, lemon, cucumber, jicama, cane sugar
Ramona's Reserve- Tequila Liqueur Straight Tasting
Angie's Gourmet To Go
Angie's Gourmet Amazing Hot Salsa- This fire roasted tomato salsa will tantalize your taste buds and leave you wanting more!
Angie's Kick Ass Salsa
Classic Hot Salsa- Made with over 20 fresh ingredients. Very highly recieved for its fresh and complex flavor.
Kick Ass Tomatillo Hot Salsa- This is a flavor explosion, but stays on the green side of the spectrum. Uses over 20 fresh ingredients.
Barrio Blonde, Rojo & Citrazona
Benson City Grill
Cilantro, Jalapeno, Lime Margarita- People’s Choice 1st Place Winner at the 2019 World Margarita Championship! Cucumber and jalapeno muddled with fresh lime and a Tajin rim.
Blanco Tacos + Tequila
Cafe a la C'Art
The Art of Salsa- Roasted and Smoked Vegetable Salsa
Smoked Nopal Salsa with Preserved Lemon- Smoked Nopales, Preserved Meyer Lemons, Fresh Cilantro & Pickled Onion
Al Pastor- Truly a farm to table taco with native corn masa "tortitas", E&R Pork on the spit, Merchants' Garden red choy, Sonoran Ranch queso fresco with our fresh made Nopal Salsa
Casino Del Sol
Salsa Molcajete- A traditional charred salsa
Tomatillo Cruda- A fresh tomatillo cruda salsa
Chef Didn't Tell Me To Name This- Refreshing grapefruit and tequila cocktail
Forbes' Traveling Taco- Sonoran hot dog traveling taco featuring Forbes Meat Co. hot dogs
Daniela's Salsa- Traditional salsa with a little kick to it.
Dos XX and Tecate
El Coronado Family Restaurant
Estrella Jalisco Beer
Fermentented Tea Company Kombucha
Prickly Pear Kombucha and New Dragon Fruit Kombucha
Four Peaks Brewing Company
Lima Spiked Limeade, Golden Lager, Xerocole IPA
Jarritos and Mineragua
A variety of Jarritos flavors and Mineragua- non-alcoholic beverages
Jugo Fuerte Spiked Agua Frescas
Jugo Fuerte Pepino & Jugo Fuerte Sandia
La Cumbre Brewing Co.
4 La Cumbre Beers
La Estrella Bakery
Mexican Pastries- handed out to take home
New Belgium Brewing Company
Mural, an agua fresca ale
Roasted Pepper Salsa- Roasted serrano and jalapeno
Sweet Pepper Rib-Eye Taco- Top shelf rib-eye with sweet pepper pico and cheeses on a grilled corn tortilla and fire roasted salsa
Pima Community College Hospitality Leadership
Salsa Casera- Home-style salsa like Nana made
Salsa Azteca- A robust Aztec influenced salsa with a hint of cocoa
Drowning Taco (Tacos Ahogados)- A perfectly seasoned combination of shredded beef, pork and thin sliced potato crispy taco. Served with natural juice broth and topped with lettuce, tomato, carrots, cucumber, radishes, avocado, marinated red onion and cotija cheese.
[POPPED] Artisan Popcorn
Artisan Popcorn and Pretzels
Proof Artisanal Pizza & Pasta
Mambo Italiano- Pineapple & basil salsa
Smokey Tiki Spritz- Smokey pineapple mezcal cocktail
Pure Love Juice
Rhubiscus Margarita- Organic Hibiscus Syrup, Roger Clyne's Mexican Moonshine Blanco Tequila, chile rim
Reforma Modern Mexican. Mezcal + Tequila
Salsa Verde- Roasted tomatillo and poblano salsa
The Arrogant Salsa- It'll hit you where it hurts!
Blueberry Basil Margarita- 100% Blue Weber Agave Tequila, lime juice, triple sec, house made blueberry and basil puree, served on the rocks with a sugar rim
El Camalion (The Chameleon)- Roasted guajillo, onions, garlic, cilantro, and bacon
Salsa Guacamole- Avocado blended with cilantro, salt and roasted New Mexico peppers and serranos
Tequila Jello Shots- Granadine and tequila
Arriba, al Centro Y pa' Dentro- Silver Tequila Tasting
Tacos de Cazuelas- Quesatacos- Tortilla with oxaca cheese and choice of meat bistec, or birria. Vegetarian option- cheese and guacamole salsa
Ritz Carlton Dove Mountain
Cowboy Salsa- Signature salsa
Sweet Taco- Sweeter side of tacos
Roger Clyne's Mexican Moonshine Tequila
Culinary Tequila Tasting Experience- Un-oaked Silver is paired with fresh salted mango, then buttery Reposado is joined by a bite of aged sharp cheddar and finish with velvety Añejo paired with orange infused dark chocolate
Salsa de Lazo
Salsa de Lazo Hot Sauce- Firey, local hot sauce made with fresh ingredients
Fire Roasted Red Salsa- Tomatoes, onions and chilies cooked over mesquite
Asian Pico De Gallo- Far East Meets Sonora. Diced daikon, chilies, ginger, cilantro and lime
San Carlos Grill
San Carlos Salsa- A flavorsome blend of tomatoes, onions, cilantro with a extra kick of spice
Salsa Santiago- Blends of the best fire roasted tomatoes, onions and traditional Mexican spices (Hot)
Seared Short Rib Taco- Braised beef short rib with roasted corn, lime, cilantro, cabbage, Salsa Yucatan and cotija cheese
Savaya Coffee Market
Organic, fresh, life-giving cold brew and iced tea
Sierra Nevada Beer
The Gallery Golf Club
Pepita Salsa- Earthy and textured salsa with herbs and crunch from roasted pumpkin seeds
Salsa Taquera- The one you need on all the tacos
Cumber Paloma- Muddled cucumber, tequila blanco & salty sweet rim
Taco Poblano- Potato, roasted corn and poblano pepper rajas
Quail Creek Country Club
QC Salsa Taquera Chile de Arbol- Chile de Arbol, smoked tomatoes
Charred Pineapple and Mango Salsa- Charred pineapple, ginger and mango salsa
Jalapeno Margarita- Jalapeno infused sweet and sour, tequila and black salt
Adobada Taco- Pork adobada taco with avocado cream and chile de arbol salsa
The Living Room at La Encantada
Chiliaquiles- A mini toastada chip with salsa verde, chicken, creme fraiche and cilantro
The Lodge at Ventana Canyon
Tequila Cocktail and Featured Taco
Tubac Salsa, Co
South Of The Border Roasted Chile Garlic Salsa- Hot- Roasted chile pepper traditional salsa with a kick of spices
Tangy Avocado Ghost Pepper Salsa- Unique flavors of fresh avocado, lime and cilantro with a nice kick of ghost pepper
Westward Look Wyndham Grand Resort & Spa
Mojito Margarita- Green apple boba, Resort-grown mint and Thai basil
Tuna Taco- Avocado crema, Arizona lime bubbles, fresh cilantro & shaved serrano peppers
Dragon's Breath- Roasted pineapple with Thai basil and Thai chili
Corazon Salsa Verde- Tomatillo, poblano, anaheim peppers and cilantro
9th Annual Salsa, Tequila & Taco Challenge
When: Sunday, September 1, 2019 - 6 PM (VIP Admission) / 7 PM (General Admission)
Where: La Encantada Shopping Center - 2905 E Skyline Dr, Tucson, AZ 85718
Tickets: $55 General Admission - $85 VIP Admission (Must be 21+ and have valid ID for entry)
Phone: (520) 797-3959 x 107
NOTE TO MEDIA: Photos available upon request
Southern Arizona Arts & Cultural Alliance
The Southern Arizona Arts & Cultural Alliance (SAACA) is a not-for-profit organization that exists to promote engagement in arts and culture, helping our communities produce strong, inspired citizens. SAACA enlists artists, businesses, governments, and individuals to expand artistic and cultural opportunities in their respective communities. To enhance access to the arts and to promote cultural awareness in the communities it serves, SAACA presents large-scale festivals, events and other programs. The Alliance also promotes educational opportunities in the arts and culture for all ages.
Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona
The Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona responds to the root causes of hunger and seeks to restore dignity, health, opportunity and hope to people living in poverty. Our mission is to change lives in the communities we serve by feeding the hungry today, and building a healthy, hunger-free tomorrow. The Community Food Bank is a proud member of Feeding America, a nation-wide network of food banks and hunger relief organizations.