Gorgeous morning in Phoenix so I walked around on a Sunday morning near our hotel downtown. Very quiet and not many people around, except for occasional street people and farmer/conventioneers. I did find a lovely little pocket of urban pioneer hipness at the Public Market Cafe, just north of the convention center area.
The place was bustling with a mixed crowd, families, millennials, older folks, all drawn to a place with good hearty comfort food (and what looked like great bloody Mary’s.) How great was it to sit on the open air patio under a tin roof by a fireplace, estimg a light breakfast. Later I walked a little further north to the Roosevelt row art district which is still in process, with stucco bungalows in various stages of restoration or recreation as galleries or little shops and new modern loft complexes.
The development is still spotty — at that attractive stage where you sense change is happening and you feel a sense of discovery.
Early SoHo, I call it, harkening back to the days in the 1970s when I used to visit artists with my mom in the emerging soho district of New York, long before it became overrun with artists and over commercialized.
Dad and I stopped briefly for lunch in Scottsdale at a pretty place called Arcadia farms, again eating on the outdoor patio. 79 degrees today! nice change from subzero temps in Iowa.
A very quick trip to Phoenix but long enough to try some creative Mexican food at the Barrio Cafe north of the Hyatt (where D. has a meeting this week.) The place was fun, lots of interesting people including a woman sitting at the bar who has written a book about fixing up a house in the “west village” neighborhood of Detroit. She and her husband moved to my hometown from Brooklyn, so I guess this Detroit renaissance is really happening. The book is called Detroit Hussle. We also met a cute young couple from Australia (Perth, as it happens, which I have a soft spot for because I had two friends from Perth at my kibbutz years ago who I ended up traveling with in Greece.) Interesting to hear the places they are visiting during a month-long trip to “see America.” They were in Phoenix because they went to the Grand Canyon. Next stop Vegas. All other stops were on the coasts.
The food at rhe barrio cafe was interesting. We liked the guacamole (made with pomegranate seeds) and the long cooked pork, the margaritas and horchata (a light milky drink that came in a pop bottle). The chicken mole and corn appetizer were too rich for me. Slow service, as forewarned but a good live band playing what sounded like merenge not Mexican music.
Filed under DINING, Phoenix
the vig Fillmore — neighborhood tavern 1914 bungalow, fish tacos
Coronado cafe, historic district, crab cakes
Astor house – BBQ
The main ingredient – beer
Cibo – pizza
Binks midtown, veggies
The house brasserie — Scottsdale
Lon’s at hermosa house
Roosevelt arts district
The mystery castle
It didn’t occur to me that a shuttle, as opposed to a flight, could be delayed by there I am outside the Phoenix airport waiting for the delayed shuttle to Tucson. Hope it’s not more than 45 minutes behind schedule although heck, just sitting outside the airport terminal in sunny 70 degrees or so weather is a tonic for this Midwestern snowbird.
I am leaving Phoenix after two days of work meetings. We were lodged at the very nice pointe hilton tapatico resort in north central Phoenix. Nice place with more pools and hot tubs than I could count, easy access to good hiking trails, a lovely mountaintop restaurant with good food and a spectacular view, especially at sunset. The layout is very confusing with lots of stucco two story spa is buildings rambling up a hilly compound.
Didn’t see much beyond our meeting room and the bus taking us to and fro. Did have a good dinner last night at del frisco’s grill near the Biltmore.
After finding a long wait for lunch at Tohono Chul, a lovely garden spot in Tucson, we ended up at another favorite, albeit less scenic, lunch spot nearby, Beyond Bread ( where’re I must remember in the future to get the tuna melt). It is hard to go to Beyond Bread without thinking about the horrific shooting that left several people dead and gravely injured then-congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords a few years ago. The restaurant is right across from the Safeway market where the shooting occurred. As it turns out, several tv trucks were parked outside the Safeway as we were leaving the restaurant and we found out from this morning’s paper that Giffords yesterday returned for the first time to the site, where there is now a memorial outside the market. She and her husband Mark Kelly are working to drum up support for gun control measures. Here is hoping they succeed!
It is 8:25 am and we are waiting for the Arizona shuttle to take us to the Phoenix airport, the first leg of a daylong trek to get home to Iowa. Ridiculous to think we won’t be home until 7:30 pm Arizona time. And irritating that the shuttle folks insisted we be here by 8:15 so the shuttle can leave on the dot at 8:30. (which means of course that my dad got us here at 8:00). When we arrived, we were told the shuttle won’t even arrive until 8:30 – 8:40. So we have 40 minutes to enjoy the view and smell (not) …some sort of industrial site across the road. Grrrr…
Filed under Arizona, Tucson
One of these days I’m going to stay in Phoenix when we land at the airport there and explore the city (rather than jumping immediately in a rental car and heading to Tucson, where we visit my dad). We’ve poked around Scottsdale a bit but Phoenix has always seemed more interesting yet challenging to explore. And when we do stay in Phoenix, I must remember to take a copy of the NYTimes story “Reviving Phoenix through Art” in today’s paper that talks about a once rundown downtown area that is now an arts district. In addition to several galleries, there is the Downtown Phoenix Public Market which sounds great – with vendors selling everything from produce to herbal remedies. The Asian tapas (“asian tapas?”) restaurant Sens also sounds worth a visit.
Filed under Arizona, Phoenix