A Taste of the Pacific Northwest in Tucson

I don’t know about you all, but I’ve had dreams about beachfront dining while hibernating away the Tucson summer months. Sometimes, while biking down sandy back alleys over fallen palm fronds in the early morning, it almost feels like I could be in a beach town, and when I come around the next bend I’ll see the ocean… but no.

If you’re craving a bit of beachiness in your life, the August lineup of events and menus at Acacia Real Food & Cocktails might do the trick.

Chef Albert Hall has just returned from an extended vacation in the Pacific Northwest and he’s eager to share some of his favorite dishes from the region. A seven course meal, clambake and seafood cooking classes are on the schedule:

  • Every Friday in August: Clam Bake for Two, a traditional clambake feast featuring a weekly selection of seafood, like clams, mussels, shrimp, crab as well as smoked sausage, corn & red potatoes steamed in old bay, fresh herbs, white wine, lemon & seaweed. Also includes a cup of chowder, lemons & drawn butter. Order in the bar or the dining room. $40 for 2 people.
  • Saturday, August 23rd: Learn how to select and prepare fresh fish in the desert with a Seafood Cooking Class. $55 per person, includes cooking demo, recipes, lunch and adult beverages.
  • Thursday, August 28th: The second annual Tastes of the Pacific Northwest dinner feature seven courses, $75 per person, plus $35 per person for optional paired wines from Oregon and Washington. Menu looks like great:

amuse bouche

dungeness crab, pink shrimp, cocktail sauce


yaquina kumomoto, smoked nori gelee, ivory salmon roe, blueberry-rhubarb curd, petit sorrel, telicherry-ver jus vinaigrette


crisp squash blossom, bleu chevre, rocket leaf, lemon oil, white peach semifreddo


fricassee of quail, crisp speck, forest mushrooms, leek, root vegetables


smoke roasted sablefish, tomato fondue, sweet pea puree, brandied hazelnut butter, madras


demi glazed flat iron grilled hanger steak, ramp, bacon, crushed hazelnuts, brown butter, heritage carrots, hashed russets


huckleberry, cascade strawberry and marionberry gelato, mascarpone and nutella touille


cougar gold, rouge bleu, goat brie, fennel crisp


Can you smell the ocean yet?!

Reservations are suggested for all the offers listed above. Call 520-232-0101 or visit the website at www.acaciatucson.com.

Nina is a Creative Nonfiction MFA candidate at the University of Arizona, a food writer and a recipe addict.