As summer hits its stride in Arizona, AJ’s Fine Foods has ramped up several programs that aim to educate and indulge Arizonans of all ages.
Through July 31, AJ’s is on the search for a pint-sized kitchen phenom through its Little Chefs Cooking Contest. Children ages 4 to 12 are encouraged to create AJ’s signature Fruit Pizza Sugar Cookie or Apple Cinnamon popcorn using the recipe on the store’s Little Chef’s link (ajsfinefoods.com/little-chefs/), and have their parents take and submit a picture on the website.
Grand-prize winners will receive $70 worth of prizes, including A Milk Bar Kids Only Cookbook, $20 AJ’s Gift Card and Split Nutrition 10 pack. Second-prize winners will receive a Kid’s Cooking Set with spatula, apron and chef hat valued at $10. There will be 11 grand-prize winners and 33 second-prize winners, who will be randomly selected and awarded in August.
On the other side of the skills spectrum, AJ’s is looking for #Kitchen911 disaster stories for its #Kitchen911: A Search for the Worst Cooks in Arizona. From now through Aug. 15, entrants who submit a 200-word description and photos of the culinary disaster they or someone they know have created to ajsfinefoods.com/kitchen911/ will have the chance to earn the title of worst cook in Arizona.
Finalists will be selected week of Aug. 16-17, with winners announced on Aug. 20. One grand-prize winner will be selected, who will receive a prize valued at $1,000, including a $500 AJ’s gift card and free cooking lesson conducted by AJ’s Bistro chef. Three runner-up prizes of a $250 AJ’s gift card also will be awarded.
Complementing the searches for the “best of,” AJ’s Summer Wine Spectacular runs through Sept. 12.
In celebration of its 35th year, AJ’s chefs are preparing monthly pairings featuring new varietals to uncork, pour and enjoy. These include reds that are full-bodied and balanced and rich fruit-forward varieties to refreshing aromatic whites and 40 exceptional wines under $13.99.