Black & Bleu opens in former Renegade spot in Scottsdale

Black Bleu is up and running in the former Renegade by MOD space, in the Shops at 94 Hundred Shea in Scottsdale.

Black stands for Angus and other premium meats, while bleu could refer to the Moody Blue cheese that goes so well with beef. But the upscale eatery can also be called “silver,” for the glittering, floor-to-ceiling sheer-chain room dividers; spray-painted cattle skulls on the walls; and chrome-trimmed wall of wine overlooking the dining room.

The Black Bleu construction is the work of one of the restaurant’s partners, Matt Wolfe, and his Mag Development company. Rounding out the ownership are Matt’s wife, Lexie, and longtime Scottsdale restaurateur Joe Popo, who also partnered with the Wolfes for the new Rise Grind (conveniently, both restaurants are in the same shopping center).

Popo also owns Stone Vine Urban Italian in Scottsdale with partner Jeff Gerlinger, and a second Stone Vine in Chandler with partner Gabby Bell.

It took quite a bit of work to transform the former MOD, which spans 9,443 square feet, Lexie said.

“Our primary goal was to create better flow of energy and warmth in such a large space — 400-plus seats if you include our two patios,” she said. “We completely reconstructed the wine racks to open up the dining room. In addition to changes of paint and wood finishes, we also added a 10-foot-long electric fireplace and replaced many of the windows and doors.”

Some walls in the middle of the space were removed, and the sheer-chain drapery was added to define areas while still keeping the space fluid.

To begin, the restaurant is open only for dinner, though Wolfe said the team is considering opening for lunch with a limited menu of signatures like house ground-beef sliders.

In the meantime, the evening menu tempts with appetizers such as black mussels in ginger coconut milk with chile and cilantro ($14); kombo-cured hamachi crudo with fava bean puree ($14); and an array of charcuterie including wild boar salumi, duck prosciutto, Fra’Mani hot capicola and Olli Virginia speck ($14-$21).

Entrees feature seared pork belly with Manila clams, sunchokes, pork jus and aleppo pepper ($21); prime 45-day dry-aged rib eye rubbed in Maldon sea salt and tellicherry black pepper with choice of two sides ($44); and diver scallops with short-rib tortellini asparagus, lobster mushrooms and nectarine brown butter ($27).

The idea is to offer full meals, instead of more typical steak house a la carte dishes.

“We love luxury steak houses, but after a drink, appetizer, main dish and sides, you are easily north of $300,” Lexie said. “It’s important for us to offer modern twists on classics, as well as some new signature items that are within most people’s means.”

Details: Black Bleu, 9343 E. Shea Blvd., Scottsdale. 480-214-9864.

Carey Sweet covers dining news in the Northeast Valley. Contact her at carey@careysweet.com.


Article source: http://www.azcentral.com/story/entertainment/dining/2014/09/26/black-bleu-opens-scottsdale/16281561/