Reopening: ZuZu at Hotel Valley Ho
Hotel Valley Ho, Arizona’s mid-century marvel with all the luxuries of a modern-day escape, has completely revamped its signature restaurant, ZuZu, marking the greatest evolution of the space since it reopened in 2005. The bold, open design pays tribute to the hotel’s iconic style while adding a fresh backdrop for the new menu of shareable plates and crafty libations.
Expertly designed by Scottsdale-based Mendil + Meyer Design Studio, ZuZu features a combination of mid-century modern and contemporary furnishings and décor, including a new neon ZuZu sign, 1950s-inspired wood screens, bold lighting elements, and dramatic feature walls. The lounge and dining room have been combined to become one expansive and welcoming space, while an inventive new transitional seating arrangement forms the centerpiece of the restaurant, with a brunch configuration that shifts into a chic lounge and dinner experience in the evening. Keen eyes may notice Hotel Valley Ho’s signature circle design theme incorporated into ZuZu’s fresh look. From curved lounge ottomans to a wall mural with layers of circular, colored mirrors and backlit acrylic to rounded custom terrazzo tabletops, the aesthetic is bold and colorful. Warm pinks combined with dusty blues are reminiscent of Arizona’s sunset and sunrise, offering a modern iteration of the original mid-century teals and oranges that epitomize Hotel Valley Ho’s 1950s roots.
“We are beyond excited to re-introduce ZuZu, not only to our wonderful Scottsdale community, but also to the guests of Hotel Valley Ho,” said Executive Chef Russell LaCasce. “Our new menu is meant to surprise and delight, while still satisfying those classic cravings.” While a few guest-favorite dishes remain, the new menu focuses on small, shareable plates featuring ingredients from the property’s brand-new 240-square-foot herb and vegetable garden. The debut crop includes shishito peppers that can be enjoyed in the Faroe Island Salmon as a blistered relish, accompanied by an anchovy roasted potato side. ZuZu will also continue working with local farmers and purveyors including Singh Farms, McClendon’s Select-Local Harvest, Pinnacle Farms, Abby Lee Farms, Schreiner’s Fine Sausage, and Hickman’s Family Farms.
Diners can savor new signature dishes including the savory Oxtail Pappardelle with foie gras and parmesan and Crispy Pork Shank with sour apple molasses glaze, cucumber tarragon yogurt, and pita. ZuZu also now offers two monthly revolving dishes: Cut of the Moment, a savory dish with a unique plating design; and Farmer’s Plate, featuring the best of the season as a stunning, vegetarian-friendly option. October’s selections are a one-pound bone-in ribeye and a roasted cauliflower ricotta gnocchi, respectively. Those looking to let ZuZu, Take The Wheel can opt for the cheeky offering, which puts the chef in the driver’s seat for a hand-selected experience for the table at $75 per person. The cocktail menu introduces fresh libations such as the ZuZu Mango Tango, infused with a grilled jalapeño straight from the chef’s herb and vegetable garden. ZuZu is also changing things up in the daytime with brunch now served every day, with favorites including the Vanilla Churro Waffle, Southwest Elote Salad, and Korean Short Rib Tacos. Delicious new desserts include the sparkly ZuZu Chocolate Bar, a Donut Sundae, and a Buttermilk Pie with blood-orange-soaked strawberries, candy honeycomb, and whipped cream.
The restaurant’s famous and swoon-worthy “Show Stopper” Shake, brought to life each month by LeCordon Bleu-trained Pastry Chef Clarissa Robinson, will continue to wow guests—not only piled high with house-made desserts but now with the option to be spiked from a selection of spirits to create the ultimate adults-only dessert. Chef Robinson perfected her chocolate techniques at L’École Valrhona in New York and flexes her creativity crafting everyone’s favorite part of the meal, from the beloved Butterscotch Pudding Cake Mason Jar with its bold combination of vanilla ice cream, popcorn, cashews, bacon, chocolate, and sea salt to warm donuts complete with a selection of sauces perfect for dipping every last bite.
A new wine room, known as The Vine Vault, houses a selection of pours from around the world and will leave guests chasing a reason to pop a cork and celebrate. There is no better space to do so than the hidden private dining room dubbed The Rosie Room, named after Rosalyn “Rosie” Bennett Lyon, the matriarch of the family that owns Hotel Valley Ho. Rosie’s grandchildren nicknamed her ZuZu, and it was her cooking and warm hospitality that inspired the original restaurant concept. This new space honors Rosie by bringing diners together with elevated offerings and intimate touchpoints. ZuZu’s overhaul centers around The Kitchen Table, an action station where the chef will cook tableside every evening, bringing live demos to the entire restaurant. Weekend brunchers will find the station transformed into an indulgent seafood display to complement the restaurant’s famous Bloody Mary + Mimosa Bar.
For reservations to experience the fully revamped ZuZu, call 480.376.2600 or reserve a table online at www.opentable.com/r/zuzu-at-hotel-valley-ho-reservations-scottsdale. ZuZu is open daily for brunch from 6:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., afternoon and late-night fare from 2:30 p.m. to midnight, and dinner from 5:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.