La Hacienda Mexican Restaurant Scottsdale Review - Time Honored Traditions From the Father of Mexican Cuisine

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

La Hacienda Restaurant by Richard Sandoval, the signature restaurant at The Fairmont Scottsdale Arizona Princess Resort, where modern interpretations of classic Mexican cuisine reigns supreme is just one of the reasons many venture to this revered resort.

From its famous TPC golf course to the Southwestern-chic AAA Five Diamond accommodations, The Fairmont Scottsdale is world-renowned. Some come to stay and play, others for the fine fare as there are multiple excellent eateries on-site.

Those fortunate enough to dine here quickly learn why La Hacienda has adopted the slogan "Old Ways, New Hands." This upscale restaurant takes the traditional staples of Mexican fare and fuses them with the very latest cooking techniques and presentation styles inspired by the finest kitchens in Europe.

Rather than focusing on bulk, spice and heat typical of South of the Border-based eateries, the more refined menu at La Hacienda instead focuses on fresh ingredients, surprising food pairings and lighter dishes that let the top-quality ingredients and skill of the culinary team shine though.

To ensure patrons receive a premium epicurean experience, the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess Resort teamed up with Richard Sandoval to create La Hacienda. A Mexico native, Chef Sandoval trained at the Culinary Institute of America and owns over a dozen restaurants across the world.

He is rightly considered the father of modern Mexican cuisine. La Hacienda represents the zenith of his life's work, as he takes Mexican food to compelling new heights. Commanding the kitchen each night is the resorts own Executive Chef, Forest Hamrick, who led La Hacienda to receive the AAA Four-Diamond award for three consecutive years.

What can you expect when you dine at the La Hacienda Mexican restaurant in Scottsdale? The first thing you'll notice is the décor. While the food is urbane, the restaurant is warm and casual, befitting its resort location.

You'll feel at home within the traditional Spanish architecture with wood beamed ceilings, beautiful stone floors, stone fireplace, and ornamental iron elements throughout. Both indoor and outdoor seating is available and, in both, the atmosphere is lively and inviting.  

Just like the food to follow, you'll find the modern alongside the traditional, starting with the supremely stylish Tequila bar. Indeed, La Hacienda is a true tequila lover's paradise. There are over 200 varieties of the spirit available, made by 36 different producers from across Mexico.

At nightly artisan tastings, and even tableside with the resident tequila sommelier, patrons learn how to appreciate the subtle differences between the types and flavors, educating and titillating their palate with the finest blanco, reposado and Anejo tequila available.

For something delightfully different, try La Hacienda's famous flaming creamed tequila-laden coffee concocted tableside in all of its fiery glory. It's a spectacle and taste sensation that you'll never forget.

Once you've warmed up nicely with a tasty tequila or a margarita, it's time to move on to the food itself. You'll find all of the Mexican favorites that you love, but many have a vibrant modern twist that elevates them to a sophisticated new level.

For starters, there is a wide choice of guacamoles or antajitos ("little cravings"). The guacamole, made tableside, is fresh and authentic—the sampler is an especially good option as it offers three uniquely flavored versions: pomegranate, spicy crab, and pepita.

There's a very wide selection of taquiera available but, whichever you choose, you can be sure that it will be bursting with taste, and prepared and presented to perfection.

There are tacos based around a variety of tasty proteins, including fresh Maine lobster, skirt steak, beef brisket, green chile chicken, slow roasted pork shoulder and barbacoa, each with its own set of components. This variety is representative of the menu on the whole, as every dish at La Hacienda is as exciting as it is expertly executed.

The menu goes on to offer admirable versions of other Mexican food favorites like enchiladas, fajitas, soups and salads. The Enchiladas de Mariscos, for example, combines blue lump crab, shrimp, Mexican oaxaca cheese and a chile arbol cream sauce to produce a flavor sensation that's powerful and sublime.

It's the bold entrée selections I feel really set this restaurant apart from the pack. Some of the standouts include Costilla de Res with braised beef short rib, vegetable escabeche, crema fresca potato and chile-guava sauce; Grilled Ancho Lamb Spareribs with chipotle bbq, cucumber mint salad and corn on the cob; Wild Isles Sea Trout with grilled sustainable steelhead trout, quinoa a la Mexicana, poblano cream and oven-dried heirloom tomatoes; and Camarones Adobado with adobo shrimp, creamy poblano rice, achiote truffle butter sauce and pineapple plantain salsa.

Another great example of Chef Sandoval's fusion approach to Mexican cuisine is the 'Robalo Tempura', which is comprised of tempura fried sustainable sea bass with savoy cabbage and a chile arbol remoulade.

Here Mexican and Japanese cuisine merges with a French panache to create a taste sensation. Sea Bass is delicate, and it takes real skill to create this dish that delivers on taste without overpowering the delicate flavors of the fish itself.

Be sure to pair your entrée with one or more delicious sides, which are just as tasty as the main dishes themselves. My personal favorites are the sweet corn habanero slaw, fried plantains, and the creamy poblano rice, all of which are great accompaniments to any meal here.

Whether or not you're staying at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess Resort, try to make your way to this haven of fresh, modern Mexican cuisine. One visit to La Hacienda and it becomes clear why the restaurant earned the distinction of being named the number one Mexican Restaurant in Arizona.

Images under copyright, owned and used courtesy of Fairmont Scottsdale Princess Resort and Richard Sandoval.

Haute Tease

  • Defamation Review: Powerful, Dramatic and Poignant from Director Yoav Shamir

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Defamation,” a documentary that explores Director Yoav Shamir’s personal views of Anti-Semitism, the Holocaust and Nazi’s, in a world where the only opinions are the traditional hardline views and begs the question of its value in a post-Hitler world.

     
  • Art Basel Miami Beach Presents George Segal Solo Show

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    For Art Basel Miami Beach 2018, Templon presents, in main section of the fair, an exceptional solo show by late pop artist George Segal (1924-2000), widely considered the most existentialist of all American artists from the pop art era.

     
  • OSCAR Nominee Reaction: Natalie Portman

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Jackie, the Fox Searchlight Film, from Pablo Larrain, earned Ms. Portman her third Academy Award nomination, for the gut-wrenching performance of Jackie Kennedy as she remembers Dallas, the three days following, and the inner workings of the White House.

     
  • Beltway Insider: Trump/Tariffs, Gun Control, Cops Shot, Plastics Ban, Customs Glitch, Kabul Blast, Peter Fonda

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    President Donald Trump announced he is delaying the implementation of tariff's on specific consumer goods imported from China until December 15, 2019, to allow retailers and consumers equal footing over the upcoming Christmas shopping season.

     
  • Eat! Berlin Gourmet Festival 2017 - One Of The Worlds Ten Best Fine Dining Festivals

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The time before Christmas is a time of annunciation: Gault&Millau announce who has earned how many points and toques. Guide Michelin announces the number of stars shining over its dearest chefs. And – last not least – we are proud to announce our very own festival program 2017.  

  • Celebrity Interview: Tom Volf Talks on the Making of Maria by Callas, the Process, and the Surprise Acceptance

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Tom Volf the first time director behind the international sensation Maria by Callas, the documentary from Sony Pictures Classic of the immortal Opera singer, recently sat for an interview as his film completes an unbelievable year of global premieres.

     
  • Shangri-La Hotel, Toronto and Ontaro-Based Levenswater Gin Make A Perfect Pairing For A Spring Botanical Afternoon Tea

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Shangri-La Hotel, Toronto welcomes spring with a Botanical Afternoon Tea in partnership with award-winning Niagara Region artisanal gin producer Levenswater and their carefully-crafted Spring 34 gin. Gin-inspired menu offers aromatic delights to afternoon tea-goers and gin connoisseurs alike.  

  • Beltway Insider: Trump/Queen Toast, Brits Protest, D-Day Anniversary, PM Hopefuls Implode, Manafort Headed to Rikers, Dr. John

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania met this week with Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth in the first official state visit which coincided with the 75th Anniversary of the D-Day invasion and liberation of Europe.

     
  • In An Exclusive Two Show Engagement San Francisco’s 42nd Street Moon Presents Stephen Sondheim’s Follies

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    San Francisco's 42nd Street Moon (Daren A.C. Carollo and Daniel Thomas, Co-Executive Directors) has announced the cast and creative team for the upcoming special engagement of Stephen Sondheim's Tony Award-winning musical FOLLIES in Concert for two performances only.

     
  • Beltway Insider: Immigration Ban Challenges Trump; E.O’s; PM May Visits WH; Princess Diana; MTM/Emmanuelle Riva

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    President Donald Trump spent his first full week as the 45th President alienating our nearest neighbors demanding the Mexican government pay for the proposed "Border Wall" that resulted in the Mexican President cancelling an upcoming White House visit.

     
  • CosmoGirl! and NY/LA Model's Crown Next Fashion Princess

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    "So You Want To Be A Model" contest sponsored by New York/LA Model Management and Cosmo Girl! Magazine ended its national search for that new fresh face at a recent star-studded competition held at the trendy Manhattan hot spot Plumm.

     
  • Beltway Insider: Obama Faces Paris Criticism;Funerals Begin; European Terror Sweep; State of the Union

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    President Obama, in the wake of the Paris Terrorist attacks at Charlie Hebdo, has yet to explain to the American people his apparent snub and lack of leadership during the largest anti-terrorism gathering in post World War II Europe.

     
  • Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri Review – Impressive, Powerful Character Driven Performances

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, from Fox Searchlight Pictures, presents the story of wrath, rage, and anger, deep, unquenchable, unfathomable, burning, gnawing, seething, bubbling volcanic murderous rage and those who have yet to learn to cope, manage and hope.

     
  • Money News: DOW, NASDAQ, S&P Close Up; London Hits New Record; European Markets Close Up; Nikkei Falls

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The DOW Jones Industrial Average, managed once again to keep the bear market at bay, and closed the trading week up with double digit gains as the upswing carried over into European Markets with London closing with a record high.

     
  • Academy Museum of Motion Pictures Announces Major Additions to Showcase Museum’s Costume Collection

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The Academy Museum of Motion Pictures is pleased to announce numerous iconic movie costumes it has acquired through generous donations, partial gifts, and purchase. Costume design will be one of the many motion-picture arts explored in the Museum’s inaugural exhibitions.