Last weekend sold out in minutes. And though walk-ins were still accepted, it was a packed house on both nights.
Cycle’s next shift this weekend brings a new food truck, a new mixologist and no reservations needed—for anything, at anytime.
Selling their signature, hulky sandwiches, each for $9, Phoenix Cheesesteak Company will be in full command of the food menu. Cheesesteak options exist in the form of the “Westside,” “Phoenix” and the more classic but equally tongue-in-cheek “Not From Philly,” with chopped ribeye, charred onions and peppers, all glued together with a spread of trusty (cheese) whiz.
Then behind the bar — the “Biker Bar,” as it’s playfully labeled — the first in a procession of planned bartending masters and mixologist MVPs will emerge: Micah Olson. Co-creator of cocktail consulting firm AZ Mixology alongside equally idolized Jason Asher (both of whom met while working side by side during past lives at Sanctuary Resort’s storied Jade Bar), Olson will be gunning a customized, enthusiastic range of distinctive cocktails.
With a love for resurrecting the time-tested bones of classic cocktails and polishing and tweaking them for modern audiences, Olson is known for his loyalty to the craft, preferring juices just squeezed, headstrong herbs, studied lines of booze and a heavy respect for the effective might of bitters. Measured and exacted, it’s the science of perfectly constructed, boozy beverages, and we’re all the more lucky to have any opportunity to taste.
Beyond a few extra surprises, to be sure, Olsen has tailored a gifted list of five different options. The full drink menu is now available on Cycle’s website.
Cycle is open both tonight and tomorrow night for happy hour from 4 to 6 p.m., dinner from 6 to 10 p.m., and the bar operating at full steam until 2 a.m.
Cycle is located inside the Lexington Hotel at 1100 N. Central Ave. (light rail at Roosevelt station) — 602.252.2100.
It’s (appropriately) time to get the first taste of Cycle.
First up this weekend? Veteran local chef Tracy Dempsey and Hey Joe Filipino Street Food.
Last night, Phoenix’s first, official pop-up restaurant concept debuted Downtown in the recently vacated, reimagined dining space inside the evolving and Lexington Hotel. As the name Cycle alludes, each week may bring surprises both subtle and dramatic, with chef and resulting menu changes often taking place spontaneously until the space’s “sell-by” date arrives late this summer.
During the month of April, Cycle initially intends to play exclusively on the weekends, when a diverse range of personalities will assume both the interior kitchen’s helm, as well as the front driveway, where popular food trucks might be parked outside for more fast-casual dining experiences.
Adding to the spontaneous, community-oriented vibe of the sly enterprise, a handful of local artists will be creating what they do best, in temporary on-site studios just down the hallway.
Simply put: roll in, grab a bite and explore.
This weekend brings a contrast in tasty grazing, with authentic (and sometimes adventurous) Filipino street eats courtesy of Hey Joe, paralleled outside the hotel’s front entrance, offering everything from mung bean popsicles and pork lumpias (think egg rolls), to more subtle offerings like “chicken ass.” A sit-down menu of more tactful, though equally delicious, offerings courtesy of seasoned local kitchen maestro Tracy Dempsey will also be available. The yin to a feathered posterior’s yang, you could say.
For Dempsey’s contributions in particular, with a thrifty price point of $7 each, diners can satisfy both their savory and sweet cravings for well-crafted, premium-quality food sans any usual pretension (all food will be served on paper plates). On the savory side of her menu, think smoky salmon rillettes, Lisa G’s storied meatballs (the recipe being from the same, now defunct Coronado restaurant by the same name), or soul-warming bacon and Gruyere tarts, assembled with meat from venerated local purveyor Tender Belly.
Considering Dempsey’s known mastery in the world of pastry, expect no letdowns with tempting dessert items like quirky cookie platters, bright lemon tarts and cheeky s’mores cupcakes.
With an ability to book reservations online, diners will now be able to secure seats in advance at Cycle. Or, at least as far in advance as we are led to know, as Cycle intends to regularly update its website with each new or upcoming evolution as it materializes.
Cycle intends to transition from the current weekend-only service to daily service, beginning in May.