This is the Place I Was Telling You About

Whiskey Hugs and Vegan Pozole in Tucson

Dale Ott is a self-described whiskey-hug-giver. In her role as the brand manager for Whiskey Del Bac—the much-lauded and richly awarded single-malt spirit made in Tucson—she travels the world spreading the smoky, caramel-noted message of this Sonoran Desert whiskey.

What makes it taste like the desert? That would be the mesquite.

A tree that grows prevalently in the Southwest, mesquite wood is the backbone of Whiskey Del Bac. The distillers malt barley over mesquite instead of peat, as in the traditional Scottish method.

"All of us are very passionate about our state and creating a spirit that represents the nostalgia of mesquite," Ott says. "It's pretty special stuff. It really tastes like a memory of the desert."

In this final episode of "This is the Place I was Telling You About," Ott, with two friends and fellow coworkers in tow, shows off all the reasons why Tucson was named a UNESCO City of Gastronomy—the first in the U.S., in fact. Think pozole. Think whiskey ganache brown sugar cake. Think passionate people behind every well-plated dish and expertly stirred cocktail.

As Ott eloquently sums up at the end of the evening: "It's nice to feel the heartbeat in what people are doing."

In this episode (all in Tucson):

Tito & Pep
Cup Café at Hotel Congress
The Royal Room

Expedition Foodie AZ

About the Author: Expedition Foodie AZ

Expedition Foodie AZ’s authors interview chefs, servers, bartenders, brewmasters and winemakers to uncover Arizona's best-kept dining secrets. Have a tip? We'd like to hear it. Visit us on Facebook or Instagram to say: “This is the place I was telling you about …”

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