When our friends Andy and Issamu from Wonderwerk LA called upon us to throw them an epic release party for their new wine, Marinara! … we answered in a big way. By taking over one of the most iconic PHX restaurants located right on McDowell and 28th St, Avanti! It’s a classic Italian joint that’s been around since 1974 and has hosted some of the biggest stars that have rolled through our city. Countless framed photos fill the walls showcasing the many actors, musicians, and presidents shaking hands with the owner Angelo. This place is rock n’ roll! Ask your grandad about Avanti, I bet he’ll know about it.
Over the years it’s turned into somewhat of a hidden gem, and the younger gen in Phoenix really hasn’t discovered it yet. It was the perfect location for the Marinara party, which we coined a “premiere”, equip with a red carpet entrance and local photographer Maddy Crouch on paparazzi duty.
It wouldn’t be a Monsoon Market takeover without some of the Recordbar Radio crew on the lineup, so we brought our friend and badass music selector, Davina, to come party with us! Charles, Avanti’s resident piano man also joined us for the night. Having just celebrated his 90th birthday, Charles has been a fixture of the Avanti bar for many years. You can catch him there Friday-Sunday playing beautiful melodies on the keys while you immerse yourself in the 80’s fever dream that is the Avanti bar: colorfully lit with black & white checkered floors and mirrored walls and ceilings. The aesthetic is Sopranos strip club meets fine dining.
But the entertainment didn’t stop there. Wonderwerk wanted this party to be over the top so they hired a Frank Sinatra impersonator for the night. We were entirely unsure if he was actually going to be any good but we were fully bought in. Our Frank showed up in character and serenaded the dining room, while cracking’ wise guy jokes and hitting on everyone’s wives. At the end we had everyone in the room singing “My Way” with their iPhone flashlights turned on like the new age lighters at a concert. It was absolutely perfect.
The night was filled with incredible outfits and photo ops, endless entertainment, bottles of red wine, plates full of pasta and the most incredible energy. Big thank you to our collaborators: Wonderwerk LA, Avanti, Maddy Crouch, Recordbar Radio, Selection Sauvage and all our friends who made this a party to remember. Stay tuned for the next Monsoon Market party, Phoenix <3
Check out the photos from the Marinara Premiere below!