Luxury, Red Rocks, Jeeps, Cuisine, and Wine
Genuine Hospitality in Sedona

Fall 2007
By Linda Kavanagh

Seven Canyons Golf Course

Seven Canyons Lodge
When was the last time you came home from a trip, vacation or otherwise, and found yourself reliving the experience over and over, either in your mind, or to others? As a food and travel writer my trips sometimes tend to blur all together, perhaps tainted ever so slightly by the sheer profligacy of my job. Writing this article, however, will be the umpteenth time I've recounted this particular adventure through the breathtaking terrain of the Red Rocks of Sedona, Arizona.

Unlike Phoenix and Scottsdale, Sedona remains a cowboy's paradise of sorts, holding back on large construction and over-the-top tourist traps. Keeping time with the landscape, Sedona continues to utilize (not bastardize) its wealth of vibrant color contrasts, mountainous backdrops, and the scenic forest and desert land. Just when I thought I was in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by the surreal Red Rocks, we made our way to an oasis amid the crimson boulders.

Click on Images fto enlarge

Seven Canyons, known as a “fractional ownership" resort of sorts, immediately took my breath away. Situated on 200 acres, surrounded by 100,000 acres of national forest, this home away from home for those who want the comfort of a second home and the luxury of an exclusive vacation experience, is a relatively new property catering to the elite, as well as avid golfers and outdoor types. Individual old world style European villas are 2,500 square feet of comfort and extravagance with 360-degree panoramic views from any of the 3 bedrooms, 3 baths, indoor and outdoor kitchens, patios with hot tubs, and from the stately living and dining room areas. The bedding is of the highest quality cottons and linens in rich colors, and I only have one thing to say about the bathrooms -Heated Floors! Lush furnishings sit atop wood floors and cooling fans twirl from high beam ceilings above. The gourmet kitchen, complete with Viking appliances, cooking equipment and tableware, are a gourmandís dream. But, this is Seven Canyons a place to relax and enjoy the amenities of such an exclusive community. So, why not have one of their talented chefs come and prepare a custom made menu for you and your guests?

Seven Canyons Cuisine
Executive chef Dan Martin leads a team of dynamic art culinaires through a whirlwind of dining components. The clubhouse serves 3 meals a day and everything in between, including special events and making sure the Seven Canyons staff (over 200) are well fed. Private dining, of which my travel companion, Rachel, and I were treated to was just as entertaining as it was delicious.

“Our" chef came prepared with ingredients, creativity, high energy, and an assistant to set the table, and the mood. As Chef Jeff glided through the kitchen, champagne was poured, the outdoor table was set, the fireplace was lit, and the sun went down slowly behind the Red Rocks. Rachel and I chatted with the chef as he dusted scallops, prawns, and crab claws with almond flour, seared them in peanut oil and placed them atop julienne vegetables with a light beur blanc sauce.

As we gobbled up the sweet de-shelled seafood we could see a vibrantly colored salad being tossed. Baby greens were arranged with sweet raspberries and strawberries, candied walnuts, and a drizzle of raspberry vinaigrette. The sweet, tart, veggie and fruit combinations were surprisingly tangy and tasty. The unique salad also had a role in distracting us from the entrée being prepared back in the kitchen. Chef Jeff surprised us with a lobster feast befitting that of a landlocked state. Two lobster tails were sautéed ever so slightly, keeping company with steamed clams and mussels in a fragrant broth. My friend and I have long mastered the art of eating and had no trouble devouring the decadent entrée before us. “We can't wait for dessert," we told our chef.

Continuing to fill our bellies, and our spirits, a silky Bananas Foster was prepared before our eyes. Firm bananas swam in the hot brown sugar and brandy reduction until slightly softened. Homemade vanilla ice cream topped our sweet sensation and a glass of champagne washed it all down. Within minutes of finishing the last of the Bananas Foster the kitchen was spotless, our coffee timer was set for the morning and our beds were calling us in to dream about our private dinner party.

Just when you think Seven Canyons could not be any more spectacular, Chef Martin is preparing to open the property's premiere restaurant, “Greens at the Range House", a three-meal a day restaurant that is casual by day and takes it up a notch for those more formal weekend nights. “The breakfast menu will be a limited menu with lighter fare and assorted breakfast sandwiches, paninis and wraps, while lunch will have the favorite club house fare such as hamburgers, beer brats and great salads," explains Chef Martin, “Our dinner menu will be New American, changing constantly with whatever is in season." The new restaurant is expected to open in late August early September.

Seven Canyons
755 Golf Club Way
Sedona, AZ


Arizona Tourism Center
For our next Sedona experience, we enlisted the help of the Arizona Tourism Center. They are a fabulous resource and can custom design everything from wine/food related stays to family sight-seeing tours throughout Sedona that fit any budget and every desire.

Arizona Tourism Center


A Day In The West
Sedona Center brings you to restaurant row, as well as a bevy of boutiques, and to A Day In The West jeep excursions, the oldest continually owned family business (since 1949) that specializes in Jeep tours, horseback rides with cowboy cookouts, winery tours, artists and gallery tours, and Jeep rentals. We opted to do a wine country jeep tour before making our way over the dicey terrain of the Arizona desert. We visited, and tasted of course, wines from Echo Canyon Vineyard & Winery, Jerome Winery, Oak Creek Vineyards, and Page Springs Vineyards & Cellars. Then it was on to the dessert of Sedona! Our guide (our very own cowboy) kept us informed, and in stitches while four-wheel-driving us up angles that no sane women should dare. But, we dared, and we had a ball!

A Day In The West


Cowboy Club

Panoramic View of the Cowboy Club

Our adventure behind us, it was time for some relaxation (and libations) back in town. The Cowboy Club Grille, originally the Oak Creek Tavern dating back to 1946, is the place to find the locals sipping on hot pink cactus pear margaritas and enjoying some high-end pub grub, such as Napolitas cactus fries, served with a black bean dipping sauce, pulled pork and chopped buffalo sandwiches, and campfire ribs. The décor is Country and Western, showcasing the second largest set of Longhorn horns in the United States, and a number of prominent Cowboy Artists' works.

Cowboy Club
241 N. Hwy. 89A Sedona


Amara Resort and Spa

Nestled down along the banks of Oak Creek, and accessed from Uptown Sedona is Amara Resort and Spa. This 100-room full service AAA 4-Diamond resort boasts the best location in Sedona. The rooms are modest but comfortable. After a few spa treatments at the Amara Spa it was pool time with the sound of Oak Creek's rippling waters in the air. We walked a bit of the path along the creek and soon worked up, yet, another appetite. The talents of Chef Alan McClean spearhead the hotel's restaurant, The Gallery on Oak Creek. Chef McClean has worked at several fine dining establishments in Arizona, including The Boulders in Carefree, Vincents on Camelback in Scottsdale, and Lons at the Hermosa Inn in Scottsdale. Some of our favorite dishes included the smoked salmon quesadillas, which were fun to nibble on while sipping our wine. Porcini dusted Scottish halibut was surprisingly decadent with its creamy earthy porcini cream reduction. The White Marble Farm double cut pork chop, an all natural brand from the mid-west thatís all the rage, proved its point, served with a smoky barbeque glaze, rattlesnake bean cassoulet, three pepper jelly, and roasted tomato ancho sauce. The Amara Duet is an 8 ounce grilled tenderloin with a rich cabernet sauce teamed with a flaky lump crab cake. Linguini with basil pesto included roasted vegetables with shitake mushrooms, fresh milky ricotta and grated Pecorino. The Gallery portion of the restaurant is just that's a gallery of local modern works, accentuating the minimalist dÈcor of the restaurant, as well as the hotel itself.

Amara Resort and Spa
301 N Hwy, Sedona


Art of Wine
Sedona and the Verde Valley are home to world-class wineries and vineyards. Sedona wine making really started to take off about 8 years ago. Turns out the high elevation, rich volcanic earth, and mild climate make it ideal for wine grape growing. 90 percent are of the deep, thick, rich red varietals, including syrah, cabernet, and merlot. The Art of Wine, Sedonaís premiere venue to taste and purchase Arizona wine is a fun place to visit. The store/gallery features local artist Michael Godard's whimsical art as well as cool fashions and funky wine accessories and gifts.

Art of Wine
101 N. Hwy. 89A
Sedona, AZ


Linda Pernice Kavanagh
MaxEx Public Relations, LLC

102 Alton Road
Stamford, CT 06906
P 203.323.4185 F 4183

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