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“Quite an Experience!”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Curious Kumquat - CLOSED

Curious Kumquat
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $5 - $40
Cuisines: American, International, Contemporary, Fusion
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Local cuisine, Business meetings, Romantic
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Late Night, Outdoor Seating, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Description: James Beard nominated eclectic restaurant featuring fast, fresh and affordable lunches, and modernist foraged tasting dinners.
Scottsdale, Arizona, United States
Level Contributor
27 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Quite an Experience!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 31, 2014

What a great find in a little NM town. Starting off, the waitress was very helpful in choosing a wine that would pair well with my entree (Thai Duck). You pick your entree and the chef makes the remaining choices - appetizers and dessert. There were 3 appetizers.. starting with a very small one to begin waking up your senses, then a slightly larger one (I can't recall exactly what each was, even though they provide you a printed menu to take with you). The best appetizer was the one in a sealed jar out of which cherry wood smoke came out smelling great when you opened the jar. The chef said this dish was created out of homage to the forest fires in the area.

My husband and I both had the Thai duck. My only suggestion is that we should have ordered different dishes so that we could have tasted more. The duck was the most tender one could ever imagine!

The chef served the dessert (amazing tasting lemon dessert that even had gluten free layer on bottom). He then talked with us about how he made the different items, his inspiration and experiments that worked well in theory but not in daily life :-) Perhaps most fascinating was the source of his food - besides growing himself and locally gathered - was what he gets from the 4-H members. Great local source of food, and giving kids an opportunity. Worth a visit!

  • Visited August 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
4 Thank MargoBoster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

278 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Tucson, Arizona
Level Contributor
16 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Who needs the French Laundry”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 23, 2014 via mobile

Or Noma for that matter. The CK is an amazing restaurant. We had the most enjoyable, delectable meal we have had in years. I was especially impressed with the course that came out in a sealed jar out of which came cherry wood smoke when it was opened. Absolutely the best duck I have ever had. An amazing beer and wine selection as well. Rob and Sonya were perfect at preparing and serving our meals.

Visited August 2014
4 Thank W Mark C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tucson, Arizona
Level Contributor
119 reviews
26 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 187 helpful votes
“Somewhat Precious”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 16, 2014

This is an unusual restaurant to find in such a small, out-of-the-way place. It belongs in a metropolitan area with a well-heeled clientele that would have to reserve a table a week in advance to get in. It has won all sorts of awards, has a famous or soon-to-be-famous chef who uses all sorts of local, fresh ingredients, and charges prices that go along with its mystique. However . . .
When we reserved a place the night before, as other Tripadvisor guests had recommended we do, we were asked if we wanted to order their tasting menu ($44) or just order a la carte. We opted for the latter, partly because of price and partly because a 5 - 7 course dinner seemed to be more food than we wanted.
When we arrived (to an empty restaurant, by the way), the waitress gave us a menu listing all the entrees from $39 - $44. When questioned, she said that those prices were for entrees that went along with the tasting menu. What were they by themselves? Oh, she said, dismissively, somewhere around $14 - $17. I guess if you had to ask, you couldn't afford it.
We opted for the lamb chop, which was done perfectly and served on a mound of mashed potatoes with a side of salad. Everything was indeed delicious, as was the chocolate almond cake. In fact, I've never had any cake quite as good.
So what am I complaining about? The food was excellent, but somehow, you were made to feel that asking what anything cost was gauche. That left a somewhat unpleasant aftertaste in spite of the excellent food, Oh, and the bill was substantial.
So, if you want a special meal and don't much care what it costs, go ahead and satisfy your curiosity. Just don't expect them to tell you how much they charge for the kumquat.

Visited August 2014
1 Thank forsl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
gfron1, Owner at Curious Kumquat, responded to this review, August 17, 2014
First, thank you for the kind words, and I will quibble with one aspect of your review - at my age I'm neither famous nor soon-to-be anything, but still I appreciate the sentiment. Your one concern was the tone of announcing the prices for our entrees. Sonia's really good at making our space welcoming to everyone since we have such a diverse community, and my guess is that the tone was more related to another comment you made. We emotionally thrive on it being busy where we feed on the energy of our guests. The past couple of weeks have been slow as vacations have come to a close and school is starting up, so we've had very slow nights recently, and I know for my part in the kitchen, it gets very lonely. I think that's probably what you were sensing since about 40% of our customers do the entree option, and Sonia serves all of our night customers. Regardless, my apologies for your experience. I will say that our entrees range from $10-17 and desserts $1.95-6.95 so not out of line for Silver City especially in our case since most of our meats are raised locally by 4H youth. They do cost more than most, but I hope the return is quality and socially aware dining. Again, thank you and please do check us out again. ~Rob
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
200 reviews
170 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 162 helpful votes
“Mind Blowing--Incredible Experience!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 14, 2014

My husband and I wanted to celebrate our wonderful mini vacation seeing the Gila Cliff Dwellings with a very special meal. Curious Kumquat was a dream come true, it is a beautiful restaurant with the requisite lovely colors one expects to see in the Southwest with it's heritage in Mexican tradition. The food is quite a brilliant departure and is the love child of Chef Rob Connoley. You have to love this chef who goes out and forages for amazing fresh ingredients for the dinner tasting menu and elevates something so unusual as cat tail pollen to such a thrill for every possible sense. We decided on the tasting menu and were thrilled and delighted as each dish arrived: incredible delicacies of edible art, served with such panache. We had 3 dishes before the entree and each one had us squealing with delight from the visual and wanting to lick the plate when we were done to not miss one single drop of the amazing flavors. My favorite was a mason jar sealed and when opened a wafting of cherrywood smoke where the ingredients inside were heavenly delights. I had the Thai Duck, my husband had the lamb chops--both were incredible. My duck had crispy skin and the beautiful curry served on rice. The salad was beautiful with little exploding boba balls of passion fruit juice made by the chef. The finale was the beautiful decadent dessert served by Chef Rob himself, such a nice guy! The dessert was heavenly, 3 layers of chocolate goodness with the surprise of a delicate crunchy topping made of milk reduced down to this amazing substance. It was a brilliant and memorable meal that we appreciated so much. Our server was great, so informed and on top of everything. I love this restaurant and consider myself to be so fortunate to have had the experience.

  • Visited August 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
4 Thank DixieJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Phoenix, Arizona
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“A Silver City Gem!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 7, 2014 via mobile

Chef Rob Connoley, PhD serves up an amazing 5 course dinner guaranteed to delight even the most sophisticated of palates. Each course is a leading progression of tastes and styles and is sure to leave you wanting more. Unbelievable creativity and plating from this one amazing Chef; You ARE living the dream ;0)

Visited August 2014
3 Thank Leah J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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