Tanque Verde Ranch Names New Executive Chef
Former Miraval Resort Chef, Justin Macy, Brings Spa Cuisine Background to Create Healthy Takes on Traditional Guest Ranch Comfort Food at Tanque Verde Ranch
Tanque Verde Ranch, a historic guest ranch located on 60,000 scenic desert acres alongside Tucson’s Saguaro National Park, announced today that Justin Macy has joined the resort’s culinary team as executive chef. In his new role, Chef Macy will use his expertise in spa cuisine to put healthier spins on the classic comfort food that completes the dude ranch experience, while also overseeing the three daily meals guests enjoy as part of all-inclusive rates, and the resort’s active group and banquet catering services.
“We are thrilled to have Chef Justin Macy join the Tanque Verde Ranch culinary team and look forward to a strategic shift towards healthier fare for guests,” said General Manager Jim Bankson. “With endless outdoor activities such as horseback riding, mountain biking and hiking offered daily and no TVs in our guestrooms, the ranch authentically encourages an active and healthy lifestyle. Chef Macy’s expertise will bring culinary programming that rounds out the ‘Western Wellness’ experience while keeping traditional favorites.”
An Arizona native, Chef Macy began his culinary career at the young age of 17 at the renowned destination spa and resort Miraval, which is also located in Tucson. Throughout his 15 years spent in the Miraval kitchen, Chef Macy started with minimal culinary experience and worked his way up the ranks to Executive Chef of the resort. Here, he experimented with eclectic ingredients to create fusion dishes that were equally as unexpected and delicious as they were light and healthy. He also had the opportunity to co- author three cookbooks and appear on both the Cooking Channel and The Food Network, while also earning recognition for award-winning spa cuisine along the way.
“I am excited to be at Tanque Verde Ranch, where I will have the opportunity to elevate the menus that guests have enjoyed for years with healthier ingredients that will enhance, rather than compromise the taste of each dish,” said Executive Chef Justin Macy. “Throughout my career, I have thrived in the hustle-and-bustle of cooking in a resort setting. I look forward to this new challenge in a very special resort environment, where guests return year after year for a fine-dining experience in a home-away-from-home, ranch-style setting.”
In addition to carefully altering return guests’ favorite menu items to make them more nutritionally-dense and guilt-free, Chef Macy plans to introduce several spa-influenced dishes that guests can feel good about enjoying after a long day spent in the saddle. The new menus will rotate weekly, but guests can expect to see new dishes such as chili honey glazed salmon with cotija whipped sweet potatoes, and chicken chile relleno with black beans and mole verde, for example. He also plans to revive the ranch’s culinary programming to offer cooking classes and interactive cocktail mixing demonstrations that guests can attend in the afternoon, after they’ve had their share of outdoor activities for the day. The new menus will always feature an abundance of local ingredients that are indigenous to Arizona, as well as vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options for diners.
*Re-published Press Release originally received 02.24.2016*