Chef David Schmidt’s Valentine menu in Che-Ah Chi  is intended to cause some excitement.  After all, each course features at least one food item thought to be an aphrodisiac, named for Aphrodite, the Greek Goddess of love.

Can you identify them?  Some may surprise you, like basil and blueberries.  Chocolate of course is there, as are oysters.  The four-course menu offers several choices for each course.  Will you opt for the cheeky Menage a Foie, or go straight for the oysters with whipped chile?

Do the aphrodisiac foods really heighten desire?  That’s up to you to find out, but we do promise a meal that will be an enjoyable enhancement to Valentine’s Day.

Offered one night only, Thursday February 14th.  $95 per person.

Peek at the menu here:

Posted in: Chef's Dish,Events

Enchantment recently launched  ”Drink of the Week”– an ongoing campaign on Facebook and Twitter –with the wintery rye whiskey-based cocktail pictured here.

If you friend or follow us, you’ll see a post every Thursday where our libation magician Alexander Solen highlights a different drink each week  that will be available at a 50% discount for our social media fans who ask for it by name.

Often these will be off-the-menu cocktails created just for the campaign.  Other weeks we may feature one of our popular signature cocktails, a craft beer or a wine.

Watch for it on Thursdays, and when you’re next at Enchantment, ask for the drink by name.  Thank you for following us!

PS Find the name of this week’s drink on our Facebook page.

Local ingredients from Arizona take a leading role in each of the three courses of Che-Ah-Chi’s “Local for Locals” tasting menu, created especially for Arizonans as part of our winter appreciation deal.*
Chef David Schmidt highlights winter fruits, herbs, vegetables and dairy items from local gardens, growers and artisans . Unique for a winter menu are flavorful, juicy tomatoes, and these are from Seacat Gardens paired in a first course with a generous portion of creamy burrata made by a husband and wife team. Super-fragrant basil is blended into a pesto and drizzled with more olive oil. Smear this onto thick triangles of toasted sourdough for a crunchy, creamy first course and the meal is already a hit.

Short ribs, a perfect winter dish, and these do not disappoint. Cooked in local Arizona Stronghold red wine till fall-off-the bone tender, they’re presented atop a bed of pleasingly sweet grilled corn polenta and topped with an organic fried egg from local Hickman Farms. Luscious little local beets and a swish of harissa finish the plate.
Lastly, the apple cobbler was so good, we could barely snap a photo before it was gone. Oak Creek apples baked in a flaky warm crust with rich, cold buttermilk ice cream from Shamrock Farms dairy, topped with blueberry sauce and a drizzle of caramel. This meal is definitely worth the drive!



- Amuse Bouche

- Seacat Gardens Local Salad
with Arizona pecans, Black Mesa Ranch goat cheese, Sedona apples
Gina’s Homemade Burrata
Arizona basil pesto, Seacat Gardens winter tomatoes

-Arizona Stronghold Braised Beef Short Ribs
Grilled corn polenta, local beets, Hickman Farms organic friend egg, harissa
-Crispy Skin Trout
Celery root puree, braised local winter greens, shallot and agave vinaigrette

-Oak Creek Apple Cobbler
Shamrock Farms Buttermilk Ice Cream
-Strawberry Prickly Pear Short Cake
Vanilla Bean Gelato

*Stay two nights and enjoy a complimentary 3-course tasting menu for two  (inclusive of F+B tax and 18% gratuity)  in Che Ah Chi, our signature restaurant.  Rates begin at $275.  Valid through February 12, 2013. Mention code AZDIN and show AZ ID at check-in.



Why Hula Hoop Now

By Enchantment Resort (December 5, 2012)

Suzy and her handmade hoops

World Hoop Day is Wednesday, Dec 12, 2012, when hoopers around the world will be hooping for peace and health at sunset. Here’s an inspirational story from our Sedona resort hula hoop instructor who has lost 25 pounds during the 18 months she’s been hooping. Suzy not only teaches guests how to hoop, she can show you how to make your own hoop. Why not start now and you’ll be hooping with the rest of the world next Wednesday.

By Suzy Lande, Activities Staff
I have always been active throughout my life, but in my late 30s, injuries from my past started to haunt me: lower back issues, tendonitis… off the charts! Any exercise I did brought on pain. So what did I do? I gained a lot of extra weight and was depressed. Until one day, my friend pulled out her new hoop…I gave it a whirl and couldn’t keep it up for the life of me. Persevere and it shall, and it does! That day I found something so spectacular and yet so simple.

My life started to change, smiling and laughter took the place of sadness, and I was excited to finally find a form of exercise that did not cause pain, but felt comforting and allowed me to laugh at myself. I think other hoopers will agree: it is magical, and you will be transformed into a better you.

*Hooping can burn as many calories in an hour as a boot-camp style workout
*Hooping can tighten and strengthen the core, leading to a stronger back.
* Hooping is great for our digestive system.
*Hooping is good for our spirit and mind in a beautifully meditative and calming manner.
*Hooping is aerobic and can raise our level of attention and ability to focus.
*Hooping is more revitalizing than a nap.
* Hooping is fun!

Stop by the Activities Center at Enchantment Resort to try out our hula hoops, or join one of my complimentary classes this spring. See you in the circle!

Posted in: Fitness & Adventure

Executive Chef David Schmidt and Director of Food and Beverage Kevin Macquire are redefining the culinary scene at award-winning Enchantment Resort with new authentic dining experiences.

The new signature restaurant CHE-AH-CHI compliments its environment with finely appointed wood finishes, tile, neutral tones and custom lighting to create a space that is contemporary and quietly seductive. The split-level dining layout features wall-to-ceiling windows that showcase the scenic views from this elevated setting. Serving contemporary American cuisine with a hint of Southwest the menu offers a diverse selection of local and regional ingredients with specialties such as Heirloom Beet salad, Sea Scallops in candied bacon relish, Duck in creamy polenta with root vegetables, Filet Mignon with grilled ramps and sweetbread ragout, and Elk Loin with fava bean hash.

Enchantment’s stylish new Wine Bar featuring our Wine Spectator “Best of Best Award of Excellence” wine list is the ideal venue for enjoying a glass of wine or a casual dinner while taking in Sedona’s unsurpassed surroundings. The bar’s twenty-foot-long signature communal “gathering” table made of solid iron with a three inch Sandstone top, set majestically beneath amber and earth-colored blown glass custom light fixtures, creates a one-of-a-kind dining experience.

Ideal for tapas and cocktails, dinner or dessert, View 180 is a sophisticated and vibrant gathering place for relaxing and unwinding. With sliding glass doors that open to a verandah, this unique indoor/outdoor setting is available for hand-crafted cocktails, award-winning wine, and a tapas-style menu for a prelude to dinner or as a light dinner option.

Perfect for a casual dining experience and a picture perfect sunset, Tii Gavo has been refreshed and launched just in time for the summer season. While the restaurant still serves inspired southwestern fare, it features an intimate bar for enjoying the state’s largest selection of Arizona wines, as well as regionally-crafted beers on tap, specialty cocktails and margaritas, including the signature Prickly Pear margarita. Most notable is Tii Gavo’s exterior circular patio and fire pit, where guests can dine by the warmth of an outdoor fireplace with striking views of the stunning red rock surroundings.

For full menu and description of restaurants visit Enchantment Resort’s website Reservations can be made on Open Table or by calling 928.204-6000.

Enchantment Resort is revealing the finishing touches of its extensive renovation. Running two years and $25 million, the transformation touched on every aspect of the resort, including refurbishment of all 218 guestrooms; an expansion of the resort’s Meeting Village; the transformation of the Clubhouse; a larger pool area with 360-degree views; and a new retail boutique and outdoor spaces. Creating a warm and welcoming first impression for the Enchantment experience, guests encounter a totally new arrival experience. Greeted curbside by resort attendants, guests are instantly checked in via electronic tablets and escorted to their rooms. A concierge corner is located just inside the Clubhouse entrance for guest requiring further assistance.

With doors just opening in April the launch of new restaurants and bars, Che-Ah-Chi , View 180, and a Wine Bar, as well as the re-opening of Tii Gavo, the resort’s casual dining restaurant are quickly gaining reputations as local gathering spots for epicureans and wine aficionados alike. All establishments located in the newly renovated clubhouse offer distinctly different but equally fresh approaches to upscale dining at Enchantment.

Enchantment Resort’s Pool Area features an expanded pool deck and terrace area with chaise lounges, umbrellas, and private cabanas for individuals and small groups. A whirlpool spa, a well-stocked pool bar with small bites and an adjacent game room keep things lively for both couples and families. A new Activities Center provides a multitude of offerings to complement any vacation including tennis, croquet, biking, guided hikes, Native American programs and more.

There are big changes going on in Boynton Canyon, and none bigger than the new dining experiences unveiled in the newly renovated Clubhouse. With the new signature restaurant Che Ah Chi, and the re-opening of the Tii Gavo, Enchantment has appointment David Schmidt as Executive Chef to oversee all culinary operations and menu creation at the resort. A seasoned talent with extensive experience garnered at hospitality hotspots throughout Arizona, Chef Schmidt is committed to delivering the excellent food and service our guests expect.

With expressive creativity and a deep appreciation for authentic southwestern-style cuisine, Schmidt is the ideal choice to continue Enchantment’s traditions in Tii Gavo and lead our new signature restaurant Che Ah Chi. Experimenting with fresh food and unique flavor combinations, he creates high-quality menus full of bold and intriguing dishes sure to please any palate. Chef Schmidts love of not only great food, but also the dining experience itself, manifest in every detail.

For more information about dining at Enchantment Resort, please visit

Posted in: Chef's Dish

Starting From Seed

By Doug Copp (March 19, 2012)

Many gardeners prefer to start their garden plants from seed rather than purchasing actual plants. The main reasons for starting plants from seed are; more choices of plant variety, lower cost, and better adaptation to your location. While the internet may offer more plant choices than your local garden store, a seed catalog or seed saver group will yield even more choices. If you save seeds from the best heirloom (non-hybrid) plants in your garden each year, then over time you will produce plants better adapted to your soil and climate.

When starting plants from seed it is important to use a soilless mix, not dirt from your garden. Dirt doesn’t drain well and seedlings will get a fungal disease called damp-off. You can make your own soilless mix using peat moss, compost and perlite or just purchase a bag of potting soil. Place the soil in small pots or fill a flat with soil blocks (soil block makers can be found in garden supply catalogs). Drop a seed in each pot or soil block; lightly cover with soil and then water. Be sure to plant a few extra seeds because not every seed will germinate (germination rates drop off with seed age).

Seed germination is a function of plant type, time, temperature, light and water. For example; a tomato seed will germinate in about a week at 80 degrees, but require more time at a lower temperature. Tomato seeds germinate over a temperature range of 50-90 degrees, while lettuce seeds germinate between 35-85 degrees. Seeds can be germinated in a sunny windowsill. Once the seedlings start growing, they will need lots of light and regular watering. If the plants get “leggy”, tall and skinny, it is a sign of light deficiency.

Before transplanting plants to the garden, set them outside each day for a week to get them used to the outdoors. When transplanting plants to the garden, it is important to cover small plants with row cover to keep the birds away.

Posted in: Uncategorized

Sedona Wildlife

By John Meyers (February 6, 2012)

During my six years of guiding hikes for the resort, I’ve observed and photographed commonly seen animals such as mule deer, javelina, coyote, grey fox, and spotted red-tailed hawks, peregrine falcons, and the occasional bald eagle. But the most persistent questions I get pertaining to wildlife are about creatures who slither or ones that can eat you.

Since many of our guests don’t reside in the West, these concerns usually top the list for hikers unfamiliar with the high desert. Sure, you need to be aware of your surroundings and alert to dangers, but hikers are more likely to stumble into a prickly pear needle than be approached by an animal. Most animals are quite timid and will not attack without provocation.

As far as apex predators, black bear and mountain lions do roam the wilderness areas here. In my many forays off trail in remote areas, I’ve seen tracks of both, but have never come face to face with either. If you spot a bear or cougar, consider yourself incredibly lucky and savor the moment. We had a bear wander into the outskirts of town a few years ago – got a taste for garbage – took 2 or 3 weeks to catch him. The headline in the paper read “Bear Extends Vacation in Sedona”.

When you see how beautiful it is here, you might want to do the same. See you on the trail.

Posted in: Fitness & Adventure

After working with a 72 year old student for the past two years I have come to realize you cannot ignore your “bread and butter” – your best shot. This particular student had a naturally strong backhand he could hit effortlessly and consistently, but his forehand had much to be desired. At his request, our focus would be on improving his forehand, developing more topspin, and utilizing the “modern forehand” i.e. footwork. The ultimate goal would be to create an easily repeatable racquet path producing a shot with more margin for error which would result in more consistency.

Now the strategy was sound, but being the perfectionist type, my student insisted on spending most of our teaching time working on his forehand. And, 90% of his practice time between our lessons focused on the forehand which began to present problems. After hitting a gazillion forehands the past few months he could no longer hit his best shot, the backhand slice. His natural killer backhand had begun to deteriorate – very disconcerting for him, and pretty much put a damper on the improved forehand, not to mention his fragile psyche.

So, the last few weeks we have begun splitting the hitting time between the two shots, and slowly but surely, he’s getting that killer slice back. So the moral of this story, whether you are working with a pro or not, practice all your shots, especially your “bread and butter”.