Mike Ditka

Former Chicago Bears player and coach Mike Ditka speaks to fans at Soldier Field as his No. 89 is retired during a halftime ceremony of an NFL football game between the Bears and Dallas Cowboys, Monday, Dec. 9, 2013, in Chicago.

Nam Y. Huh

A brand-new food festival is bringing more than good eats to town; Mike Ditka, NFL Hall of Famer and former coach of the Chicago Bears and New Orleans Saints, will make an exclusive appearance Sunday, Feb. 9, at the first ever Taste In Tempe.

Presented by local CBS Radio stations, Tempe Center for the Arts and R Entertainment Company, the Taste assembles more than 90 restaurants, wineries and craft breweries around the picturesque lakeside amphitheater at Tempe Center for the Arts. They’ll offer samples of food and drink to fes tival-goers.

Ditka owns Ditka’s steakhouse inside Vee Quiva Hotel & Casino in Laveen; the restaurant’s chef, Andy Moy, will dish out Ditka’s menu favorites at the event.

Taste In Tempe will also include a love and romance-themed shopping experience with jewelry, luxury goods, flowers, chocolates, pastries and more, along with expert-led wine seminars, musical entertainment and a chef demonstration stage.

Among the restaurants slated to appear are 24 Carrots, Bombay Spice Indian Grill, CHoP, Four Peaks Brewing Company, Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant, Guedo’s Cantina Grill, La Bocca Urban Pizzeria + Wine Bar, Nothing Bundt Cakes, RA Sushi Bar Restaurant, Salut Kitchen Bar, SanTan Brewing Company, The Handlebar Tempe and Uncle Bear’s Bar and Grill.


What: Taste In Tempe

When: 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 9

Where: Tempe Center for the Arts Amphitheater, 700 W. Rio Salado Parkway

Cost: $59 in advance or $69 at the door. Tickets include food, wine and craft beer sampling, wine seminars, cooking demonstrations and parking.

Information: Tickets available at kmle1079.com, KOOLRadio.com and live1015phoenix.com

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