When Dwight Heard, the future founder of Phoenix's Heard Museum, purchased a swath of fertile riverbed land in the 1920s, he saw it as an opportunity to promote rural self-sufficiency instead of urban development. Nestled beside South Mountain, the 10-acre farm demonstrates the same commitment to rustic tranquility today, earning azcentral.com's 2010 readers' choice award for Best Local Treasure and serving as a romantic backdrop for a 2012 episode of The Bachelor, according to the Phoenix Business Journal. In addition to a small farm of naturally grown flowers and produce, The Farm at South Mountain includes three separate restaurants for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
The original of these three restaurants, The Farm Kitchen, satisfies noontime cravings with picnic lunches in an idyllic patio setting that Frommer's described as "an oasis reminiscent of a deep South pecan orchard." A shade-casting canopy of pecan trees and locally grown clouds surrounds visitors as they sample sandwiches with slow-roasted turkey and chipotle mayo or salads with organic field greens and roasted seasonal vegetables.
Bret Pont honed his meat-carving skills for 25 years as a Valley Grocers butcher before buying 50-year-old Hobe Meats, he told the Arizona Republic. Behind the counter, Pont helps customers locate and prepare the ideal meat by elucidating the qualities of strip steaks, rib-eye roasts, and other cuts of USDA Prime and Choice beef. Each option originates from cows that dine exclusively on corn, grass, and chocolate-dipped strawberries. All of the shop's meats are untouched by preservatives, growth hormones, and antibiotics. This policy extends to pork and chicken, which contain neither sodium nitrates nor fillers. When fed the shop's raw, natural pet foods, dogs have been known to teach themselves new tricks.
Robeks uses the freshest ingredients to craft made-to-order drinks and eats that will make you feel guilt-free about grabbing a quick bite. Join the berry party with berry smoothies such as the Banzai Blueberry, Strawnana Berry, and Cranberry Quest, all of which pulverize fruit together with all-natural juice, non-fat yogurt or sherbet, and ice ($3.49 junior, $4.49 regular, $5.49 large). For more pulchritudinous pulverized pulp, energize your day with power smoothies, including the Cardio Cooler (with a base of passion fruit and mango juice), which blend juices, non-fat yogurt or sherbets, soy or whey protein, and vitamin boosters ($5.29 regular, $6.29 large) into an elixir that that will revitalize even the most workout-withered body. Bites include protein-packed Kim & Scott's Gourmet Pretzels such as tomato parmesan or spinach feta ($2.49 each), and the hair-raising goodness of Lenny & Larry's power muffins or cookies with flavors such as oatmeal raisin, chocolate chip, lemon poppyseed, and more ($1.99 each).
The Arizona Humane Society has provided shelter and rehabilitation to homeless and abandoned animals since 1957, watching over more than 46,000 dogs, cats, and smaller critters every year as they await new homes. After proving their eligibility for adoption and consulting with the shelter staff, new owners can choose a companion from any of the pets prowling the menagerie, from puppies and kittens up to 9 months old to adult dogs and cats. Rabbits and ferrets also scurry about, searching for farmers' carrots carelessly planted in an animal shelter. For current owners, the society provides low-cost spaying and neutering services as a public service, as well as education and outreach programs to promote compassion and ensure a safe home for all creatures.
The scent of curry, chilies, and rose wafts from New India Bazaar's kitchen, where chefs roast yogurt-marinated meats in tandoori ovens and prepare other classic Indian cuisine. In addition to traditional dishes such as lamb vindaloo and palak paneer with homemade cheese, the cooks also create East-meets-West dishes, such as chicken tikka pizzas with spicy sauce, tandoori chicken, and replicas of Magellan's map baked beneath mozzarella cheese.
Arizona Pet Vet is a network of 17 animal hospitals peppered throughout the Valley area. The veterinarians use modern treatments and therapies to care for animal companions, treating each pet like an important member of its owner's family. The company doles out tips for bringing home a new pet on its website and exhibits evidence of the animal kingdom's capacity for cuteness on its Facebook page.