New: Vila Thai CuisineTwo Seattle transplants have moved to Tucson looking for adventure and culinary success for their newest endeavor: Vila Thai Cuisine, located at 972 E. University Blvd., at Main Gate Square; 903-9777. The menu offers an interesting assortment of choices; food can be made vegetarian or vegan-style, too. Get your taste buds running, and check out www.vilathai.com .
Tucson Is the 10th Healthiest CityCooking Light magazine has named Tucson the 10th-healthiest city in America. Tucson was picked because of its farmers' markets, access to gourmet ingredients, chef wages, dollars spent per person on park lands, percentage of population in good health and low percentage of overweight residents. Seattle and Portland reign in the No. 1 and No. 2 spots. Neither Phoenix nor Scottsdale made the Top 20.
ResolutionMonkey Box begins the year with a night of art and music, as six artists interpret the word "resolution." The usual good food and great wine will be served, accompanied by music from DJ Carl Hanni (a Weekly contributor) on Saturday, Jan. 6, from 8 to 11 p.m. at 100 N. Stone Ave., Suite 102; 623-3500.
Growing Restaurant IndustryAccording to the National Restaurant Association, the restaurant industry is expected to post a record $537 billion in sales in 2007, an increase of 5 percent from 2006. Arizona is contributing a large piece to the pie, with projected sales reaching nearly $8 billion, a 7.6 percent increase from 2006. Arizona will be ranked second to Nevada in sales growth for the fourth year in a row. Currently, Arizona's food-service industry employs more than a quarter-million employees. I hope independent restaurants are a good portion of this growth.