Challenging course play tucked in the shadows of the Superstition Mountains characterizes Western Skies Golf Club, earning it the yearly honor of hosting the Gilbert City Championship. Players shepherd their golf balls over the 6,744-yard layout aboard carts equipped with GPS systems, which help them determine exact distances to the greens or how far the flagsticks can be thrown like javelins. Water enters play on five holes, including the 18th, where players must hit over a lake off the tee and avoid a second lake to the right of the green on their approach shot.
A lighted practice facility lets golfers pummel Pinnacle range balls into the night sky at the driving range or shore up short-game finesse at the putting and chipping greens. After a round, practice session, or bout of putter swordplay, players can visit the bar and grill to restore calories lost on the fairways and bunkers while watching 12 HD televisions.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 72 course * Total length of 6,744 yards from the back tees * Course rating of 70.3 from the back tees * Course slope of 125 from the back tees * Three sets of tees per hole * Scorecard
The certified sommelier at Vine Expressions handpicks three wines each month, from which wine-club members select two for enjoying within the warmly lit bistro. Rotating offerings may include chardonnay, pinot noir, or cabernet sauvignon, which wine lovers sip, sniff, and gargle while lounging at the purple-tinged bar or in cozy leather chairs. Snacks crafted from ingredients culled from the nearby farmers' market complement the reds and whites, and wooden shelves brimming with bottles line the walls alongside works by local artists. Membership also grants access to specialty events such as wine dinners, festivals, and trips to regional grapevines laden with succulent fruit and juicy neighborhood gossip.
At the 12k's of Christmas, a peloton of Santas and seasonally-dressed runners race through the Gilbert's Freestone District Park. All participants receive a Santa hat to wear, and are encouraged to dress up further with colorful socks, an elf costume, or felt reindeer horns. Both 6K and 12K races feature a flat, mainly packed-gravel trail with carolers set up at every kilometer. Chronotrack chips track progress, and race organizers issue awards for the top finishers in each age bracket as well as best costumes. The race also offers a 1.2 K Santa "Sled" run, where racers are encouraged to walk a stroller or enter a souped-up wagon pulled by their pets. By partnering with adoption groups and shelters, the event operates Santa's Pet Village, which helps connects stray pets with new families.
When your flagship restaurant inhabits a midcentury post office, finding a comparable space for your second location—one that fits squarely within the city’s historical and cultural fabric—is a tall order. Leave it to the masterminds behind Postino Wine Cafe to make it look easy. Postino Central makes its home in the building of Katz's Deli, a former cornerstone of one of Phoenix's oldest neighborhoods. The deli’s bustling counter has given way to an indoor-outdoor bar complete with fire pits and a wine list that’s both unusual and approachable. In the kitchen, chefs craft small plates that brim with local ingredients, including artisanal meats, cheeses, and more than a dozen styles of bruschetta.
The popular wicked roll hides a bundle of spicy crab, avocado, cilantro, and jalape?o topped with a sweet thai-chili sauce, and the truffle Hamachi pairs fresh yellowtail sashimi with white-truffle oil, cilantro, and sea salt. The kitchen also whips up a handful of eats other than sushi, including grilled chicken and vegetarian-friendly panko-crusted tofu with miso-butter sauce. Diners can pair their meals with sake, cocktails, beers, and wines poured at Rock Lobster?s bar or milked from a giant grape hanging over the restaurant?s entrance.