mermaidcamp

mermaidcamp

Keeping current in wellness, in and out of the water

You can scroll the shelf using and keys

Mission Gardens in Tucson

October 19, 2015 1 Comment

Half Moon Beer

Half Moon Beer

Mission Garden

Mission Garden

gourd crop

gourd crop

adobe ramada

adobe ramada

irrigation system

irrigation system

Regina Romero, City Council

Regina Romero, City Council

historic crops

historic crops

A Mountain

A Mountain

Missy the party cow

Missy the party cow

Bob dining in the garden

Bob dining in the garden

sunset dining in the garden

sunset dining in the garden

sunset dining in the garden

sunset dining in the garden

The Friends of Tucson’s Birthplace held a fine dinner party in the garden yesterday.  Our historic Mission Garden has been rebuilt in the original site close to the Santa Cruz River.  The agricultural heritage of the location is ancient.  The garden is being developed as a living museum preserving original species grown by the Spanish colonial conquistadors who built the San Augustin Mission.  The orchard of stone fruits, citrus, quince and figs is growing strong and bearing fruit.  Gardens of okra, corn, chiles and other native crops thrive within the walls of the preserved site.

Local chefs were invited to create specialties for the Farm to Table event.  We were excited to taste the food and also to get to tour the gardens.  Musicians were hired to play throughout the space, which added an artistic note to the already splendid surroundings. The city councilwoman from that ward spoke briefly about the importance of agricultural history and her own family’s collection of historic recipes.  All the food was over the top creative and fresh.  My partner Bob enjoyed the grass fed beef and the buffalo chile, but most of the dishes served were vegetarian.  Drinks were served with dinner,  but for an extra fee we enjoyed a specialty beer brewed from organic wheat grown from preserved species.  The beer tasted fantastic, and sold out quickly.

The event was a success for all involved.  The chefs, no doubt, won some new fans with their creative concoctions.  The garden certainly is a place we will plan to visit again in the future.  In fact we may go to the quince festival next weekend at which we would have chance to win a special antique Spanish heirloom variety quince tree.  The quince crop is ripe and abundant in the orchard, looking very pretty.  The beauty and history preserved in this spot is a great asset to the city, and will only improve with time.

Food for Ascension, Tucson

October 21, 2014 4 Comments

On 7th Street near 4th Avenue in Tucson stands a Moorish style building complex that has housed a dance/movement/or yoga studio as long as I can remember. Today the space is serving as a gallery, coffee shop, and farm to table restaurant as well as providing space for movement classes and other events. Today I tried Food for Ascension for the first time and I am very happy I did. This place has several qualities that set it apart from other restaurants in the area. The fact that all the food comes from no more than 150 miles away is notable. The pure plant based recipes sometimes include eggs, but substitutions can be made for vegans and the gluten free people. The menu is short but several daily specials as well as a good selection of small plates provide more than enough variety. I could not choose, so I ordered two entrees knowing I would bring some home with me. Servings were generous. My server suggested the half order of biscuits and gravy because she could tell I was going to have plenty of food.  She was right about that.

biscuits and gravy

biscuits and gravy

She brought a bottle of water, which I always appreciate, and I enjoyed the wonderful view while a waited for my root and seed burger.  At this intersection it is possible to see a least a little of three different mountain ranges that surround out city.  Being upstairs to dine is truly a pleasure, especially when the weather is perfect like it was for lunch today.  The domes and the downtown skyline view, along with 4th Avenue bustle make ascension to the upper deck a super treat.  Perched above the noise of the street with plants and servers who make you feel very well attended is like finding a secret hide away in downtown.  I plan to go often to try everything on the menu.

root and seed burger

root and seed burger

I can report that the innovation and care is obvious in the food preparation.  Both burger and biscuits arrived hot and beautifully presented.  I made my way through about half of each of them, and was super satisfied as well as stuffed.  The root and seed burger had great texture, unlike the mushy veggie burger that can sometimes happen. This flavorful version had a nice char and crust on the outside which is a big plus.  The fresh greens on the plate had a lemon vinaigrette dressing that made it work as a salad, but also was tasty when applied to the sandwich as extra stuffing.  The oyster mushroom gravy on the sage biscuits was delightful. The sage flavor is strong in the biscuit, but it is complimented perfectly by the rich gravy.  It is highly evocative of Thanksgiving, with no turkey involved.  I loved both the dishes, and may have trouble choosing between them the next time I order.   I packed the rest..well, the gravy was kind of gone…to take home for Bob to taste.  I am excited to return with him next time because I know he will like it, and they do have some very rich desserts on the menu that will make him happy.  I was way too full to try any of that today.  I have found a new favorite spot, and am a little surprised it took me so long.  Food for Ascension has been open for about a year.  If you have a chance to try the food, as well as the fabulous ascension, I recommend it.  Take the upgrade, Tucson!

Farm to Table Dinner at Zona 78

July 15, 2013

Last night we attended our first farm to table dinner in Tucson. Zona 78 prepared a fresh and exotic menu featuring produce from Sleeping Frog Farms in the San Pedro valley.  Four courses featuring produce were presented, along with a delicious berry cocktail or a glass of wine.  All of our expectations were exceeded, from service, presentation, variety, to innovation.  If you have not tired Zona 78 or Sleeping Frog Farms produce, I highly recommend that you do.  We hope the farm to table dinners will become a regular feature because it is an extraordinary way to dine and expand horizons.  We met cool people and discovered new cuisine, which is exactly our style.

We were pleased and happy to taste and enjoy such creative innovative cuisine.

%d bloggers like this: