Anhelo Restaurant Reopens in Phoenix

Posted 9/14/22

Just named a 2022 Wine Spectator “Best of Award of Excellence” winner, Anhelo restaurant continues to redefine the downtown Phoenix dining scene with its modern …

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Anhelo Restaurant Reopens in Phoenix


Just named a 2022 Wine Spectator “Best of Award of Excellence” winner, Anhelo restaurant continues to redefine the downtown Phoenix dining scene with its modern twist on traditional fine dining, now paired with one of Arizona’s most prestigious well priced wine programs.

Led by Chef/Owner, Ivan Jacobo, this reimagined restaurant recently relocated from its original location at Heritage Square into a beautiful, custom-designed space on the ground floor of the 1930s-era Orpheum Lofts.

Led by its new wine manager, Anhelo’s wine program has reinvented the traditional wine-paired fine-dining experience, exclusively offering only the finest vintages from Napa & Sonoma Valley, Oregon, Burgundy, Bordeaux or Italy, and rewarding wine lovers with rare bottles not available anywhere else in the state, plus the opportunity to drink it alongside some of these legendary producers in an intimate setting.

 Originally launched as a wildly-successful pop-up dinner series named Hidden Kitchen, Anhelo (which is Spanish for ‘desire’) is the brainchild of Chef Ivan Jacobo.

A native of Mexico who was raised in west Phoenix, Jacobo never thought he’d be leading up a fine-dining kitchen, or any kitchen at all.

“Most chefs say they learned cooking from their mom, but my mom was such a good cook, I didn’t see any reason to ever learn,” he admits. But after becoming obsessed with Food Network and the Iron Chef, Jacobo decided to enroll in the culinary program at Estrella Mountain college, before leaving school to take a job at the prestigious Bohemian Club in San Francisco.

Returning to Arizona, Jacobo worked at several local restaurants, and even started his own food truck, before realizing that his ultimate goal was to do something unprecedented in today’s dining scene, opening a fine dining white tablecloth restaurant focused on the freshest ingredients from around the world, paired with an unmatched wine menu, and winery/chateau hosted events unlike anything seen in the United States, in the heart of downtown Phoenix. 

 Signature dishes include Beef Wellington crafted with Prime Texas tenderloin, prosciutto imported from Italy, and locally foraged oyster mushrooms, all carved to order tableside. “It’s the classics done right,” Chef Jacobo says. Which is also why he insists on using only the freshest ingredients wherever and whenever, such as Hokkaido Scallops flown in from Japan, and lacquers his signature duck breast dish with local honey with his own proprietary lavender spice.

That said, the Anhelo menu is ever-changing with select staples offered nightly, while the rest of the menu changes based on the seasons and the freshest ingredients available. 

 And now Anhelo has a Wine Spectator  award-winning list on a par with Chef Jacobo’s refined fare. Curated by one of the largest private collectors in the state, Anhelo’s wine team has built up personal relationships with top winemakers from around the world, allowing Chef Jacobo to host these top chateaus, owners and winemakers for intimate, unique wine dinners and events. The ever-changing list of upcoming curated events is located on the restaurant website, including highlights such as Château Angélus, Château Troplong Mondot, a confidential, highly-allocated cult Napa Valley wine dinner, Château Cos d’Estournel, Napa Valley’s Vine Hill Ranch (VHR), 40 years of Château Ducru-Beaucaillou, a multi-series on Burgundy (Domestic, French and International Grand Crus) and an exclusive never before seen in AZ or elsewhere—an incredible White vs. Black Périgord Truffle Piedmont wine dinner.

 Recent by the glass highlights include, pouring the top-rated Chassagne-Montrachet, and Sea Smoke, to pair with Anhelo’s signature scallops’ entrée; a 2015 Vosne-Romanée paired exceptionally with a honey-lacquered duck breast; or a 2006 Dominus Estate paired with Chef Jacobo’s famously fork-tender Beef Wellington. 

 Most important, Anhelo and Chef Jacobo are also committed to giving back to the local community, donating a portion of every glass of house wine sold to LoveIAM, a charity benefiting children with birth defects. And Chef Jacobo has also set up a scholarship foundation at Estrella Mountain to give opportunities to aspiring chefs in Phoenix’s often overlooked West Valley.

Housed inside a stylish 60-seat space at 114 W Adams St., Suite C103, in Phoenix, Anhelo is open for dinner, Tuesday through Saturday from 5 to 10 pm. For more information, call 602-596-7745, visit, or follow us on social @anhelorestaurant.

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