Somm Insider Vol. 11 ~ PNPK Craft Sliders – Wine Bar
PNPK Craft Sliders – Wine Bar derives its name from Scottsdale’s Pinnacle Peak Mountain. Pinnacle Peak Park Trail is a wonderful place to hike and enjoy the outdoors while socializing and meeting new neighbors. It’s also a place for releasing emotional pain, while finding peace and serenity; something PNPK’s Owner, Kellie Pruitt, desperately needed after her family was impacted by an unthinkable tragedy in June of 2016.
PNPK, originally called Grape Bistro, had just opened in February 2016, but following the incident in June, Kellie took somewhat of a hiatus, though the bistro remained open. She needed to find her new normal, and found incredible support from other people, and by looking within herself, often while hiking the Pinnacle Peak Trail. During this time of rebuilding she never lost the place in her heart for her wine business, and when the time came she was ready to jump back in. She closed for one week in March 2018 to do some reorganizing and reopened as PNPK Craft Sliders – Wine Bar. A group that Kellie came across during her hikes was The Friends of Pinnacle Peak Park, a volunteer group that maintains the trail, and played a significant part in her healing, further influencing the new name of the restaurant.
Kellie has been an enthusiastic wine drinker since the 1990s. “I started drinking Chianti, but my palate has evolved into a love of much bigger and bolder red wines,” she says. “My wine list is definitely California-red dominant, but one of my imminent priorities is to bring in some local Arizona wines.” She currently carries only one white wine from Arizona. The lucky Keeling Schaefer’s Viognier sits on the shelf awaiting its fellow AZ vintages.
PNPK has 30 wines by the glass and 150 by the bottle, representing a well-rounded variety of national and international reds and whites. She brings in local winemakers for events and dinners, and has established a local wine club. She’s even carved out a section of the bar called the ‘Champagne Lounge’.
“Anyone can sit there,” says Kellie. “It’s kind of my affectionate name for the spot because of the lush, ‘cushiony’ furniture.” When asked what her favorite food and wine pairing is at PNPK, she replied without hesitation, “The fried chicken sliders and the Alpha Omega Rosé .”
Speaking of the fried chicken sliders, let’s talk about the menu. PNPK offers a delicious, playful, savory selection of dishes, which can be ordered in either flight form, or a la carte. Some of the flights are the craft slider flight (Blueberry BBQ, Short Rib French Dip, and Ahi Tuna are just a few of the options), charcuterie flight, bruschetta flight, and dessert flight.
For starters, try one of their seven varieties of ‘Devilish Eggs’ (including flavors like Truffle Mushrooms & Creamy Brie, and Tomato, Basil, Red Onion Relish); or shareable plates like NM Green Chile Blanco Queso Dip and Mama Kellie’s Meatballs. Their Happy Hour Menu is a thing of beauty (click HERE for more info), and is available DAILY from 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
I asked Kellie what her vision is for the future of PNPK, and she said, with a gracious smile, “I want this to be the local gathering place that people come to for any and every reason.”
Darla Hoffmann, passed both her Sommelier Level 1 and Certified Level 2 exams with the highest score in her class, earning the esteemed “Walter Clore Scholarship”. She is a Certified Specialist of Wine and Hospitality Beverage under the Society of Wine Educators, and a member of The Wine Century Club. She works in the tasting room of Scottsdale’s LDV Wine Gallery, has written for City Sun Times, MYnewsMesa, and The Society of Wine Educators’ website. Darla is the sole proprietor of About Wine, which focuses on wine education and marketing through means of tastings, classes, and promotions. She conducts customized classes at various restaurants and events in Phoenix, such as Wine 101: ‘The Grape Expedition’ series, and Italian Varietals: Wines of Bordeaux, Spain & Portugal. For more info, visit: www.aboutwineinaz.com.