By Alison Bailin Batz
Photos by Luigi Ritchie
The Vig has finally arrived in North Scottsdale.
Since it launched its first location in Arcadia in 2006, The Vig and its modern tavern-meets-backyard barbecue vibe has been a hit with the community and media alike, praised for its perfect patios, eclectic menu, creative cocktails and thoughtful touches such as bocce ball courts and live music.
Over the past decade, the brand, which is owned by longtime friends Tucker Woodbury and Jim Riley, has since grown across the Valley with locations in Central Phoenix, Downtown Phoenix and McCormick Ranch.
“North Scottsdale has always been on our radar, but the circumstances had to be just right, not to mention the location,” says Woodbury, who scooped up an open space on the southwest corner of Bell Road and Thompson Peak Parkway with nearly 360-degree views of the McDowell Mountains late last year.
The expansive property afforded Woodbury and Riley to spread their wings creatively during the design phase, partnering with YAM Properties, AV3 Design, Alexander Building Company, K&I Architects and the City of Scottsdale on a 13,000-square-foot open floor plan heavily inspired by the timeless design of Frank Lloyd Wright while incorporating the beautiful natural surroundings into the restaurant’s setting.
“Jim and I both love the simplicity of the iconic structure of Wright’s Taliesin West and the Usonian style of architecture it represents, which was the inspiration for the design of this restaurant,” says Woodbury, noting that they also outfitted the venue with sets of lockers and an outdoor restroom given its less than a mile from the McDowell Sonoran Preserve Gateway Trailhead, known for its immaculate hiking and biking trails. “The setup makes it easy for guests to clean up after their outdoor activities before lounging on the patio for leisurely meals with friends and family.”
Speaking of meals, all of The Vig’s fan-favorite items are available on the McDowell Mountain location’s menu, including The Vig burger, pozole, short rib tacos, and sweet potato fries with curry sauce. New items include a pork belly and watermelon appetizer and a poke bowl.
This venue will also feature a cocktail called The Bitty, which is a play on a rum and Coke in homage to the Bitty Cycling Club in the area. Fifty cents from the sale of each of these cocktails will be donated to the McDowell Sonoran Conservancy, which keeps the McDowell Mountain trails maintained and safe for patrons.
On weekdays, enjoy happy hour from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., with food specials from 3 to 6 p.m. A two-day weekend brunch includes bloody mary and mimosa specials from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., plus half-price bottles of wine all day on Sunday.
The Vig McDowell Mountain, 10199 E. Bell Road, Scottsdale; 480.935.2949; www.thevig.us.