deseo​ Restaurant

By Dena Roché

deseo​ Restaurant

deseo's Alaskan Merus King Crab Anticuchos

Maybe because it’s buried on the lower level of the Westin Kierland Resort & Spa, but deseo is one of the most hidden culinary treasures in Scottsdale. One of the few Nuevo Latin cuisine eateries in town, it just unveiled the most extensive changes to the menu since it opened over a decade ago.

Concepted by Chef Derek Biazo, the new menu introduces anticuchos (skewers) and small plates.

“Many of the Valley’s Latin restaurants feature more of a Mexican-based influence, whereas deseo showcases flavors that range from Brazilian and Chilean to Peruvian-Japanese (e.g. nikkei) and Chifa (Peruvian-Chinese), permitting deseo to offer cuisine unlike what may be found anywhere else in the area,” said Chef Biazo.

deseo Scottsdale cocktail

Start the meal out with a rum-based cocktail or a flight of sipping rums or a bottle of South American wine from the extensive wine list.

While I normally don’t advocate wasting calories on bread, you must try the addictive Pan de Bono. These gluten free rolls are an iconic deseo staple. Ask for a side of whipped agave cinnamon butter to send your taste buds into a carb-laden frenzy.

With so many small plates to choose from, create a smorgasbord and share several with the table. Some highlights include the new Chutoro Tiradito, a ceviche of tuna belly, seaweed salad, cilantro salsa verde and jalapeno dashi; the rock shrimp empanada and the duroc pork belly that is prepared in such a unique way that a die-hard pork belly hater at the table said it was her favorite dish.

Duroc Pork Belly Anticuchos at deseo, Scottsdale AZ

Carnivores will appreciate the creativity in the new coffee and panella seared wagyu short rib entrée or the Hokkaido scallops done in brown butter with a chorizo lima bean ragout. For the vegan in the group the crispy quinoa cake with spiced sofrito, roasted corn-smoked pepper relish and charred avocado makes a satisfying main course.

Deseo continues to make converts of skeptics with the dessert course. While I have an insatiable sweet tooth, one dessert that is easy for me to find the will power to pass up is flan. But when chef sent one to the table, I figured I had to at least try a bite. Imagine my surprise to find that this dulce de leche version was…fantastic! It had none of the funky gelatinous texture I normally associate with flan. Instead it was creamy and downright delicious.

Deseo is open for dinner nightly. Enjoy descansar happy hour every night from 5:30-7 pm in the adjacent muddle bar. For reservations please call 800.354.5892. kierlandresort.com