The Farm At South Mountain

written by Julie Cohn

The Farm at South Mountain

It is still winter for most of the country, but in Phoenix, the warm sunshine and heady scent of spring in the air betray the calendar.  It was February 12th, and I just arrived in the garden outside Quiessence, the fine-dining restaurant at The Farm at South Mountain, where I was attending the International Food, Wine, and Travel Writers (IFWTWA) regional luncheon.  An early arrival meant I had twenty minutes to enjoy the beautiful weather and the scenic grounds of The Farm at South Mountain before other guests arrived.   My camera at the ready, I set out to see what The Farm at South Mountain had to offer.

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Nestled against South Mountain Park in Phoenix, The Farm at South Mountain was developed by Dwight Heard, a well-known Phoenix-area rancher and publisher of the Arizona Republic, in the 1920’s.  He divided the land into two acre parcels and sold each parcel with a cow and fifty chickens, to promote self-sufficiency of the land.  For forty years, the ten-acre plot of land at Southern Avenue and 32nd Street was owned by Skeeter Coverdale, who planted one hundred pecan trees on the property.  When he could no longer care for the pecan trees, the land was sold to Wayne Smith, who developed the land as we know it today.

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Pat Christofolo purchased the property in 2012, after working on The Farm at South Mountain for many years.  Pat keeps Mr. Heard’s vision of self-sufficiency alive today at The Farm at South Mountain, with three restaurants, retail shops and open air markets, and gardens filled with herbs, flowers, and succulents…and of course, those wonderful pecan trees!  The Farm at South Mountain hosts many events (including weddings), as well as craft and gardening classes.

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The Farm at South Mountain has three unique restaurants to satisfy different tastes.  Morning Glory Cafe is open for breakfast, six days a week, with dog-friendly outdoor seating.  The Farm Table is open for lunch, seven days a week, where guests can either sit on the patio (also dog-friendly) or order a picnic lunch to eat on the beautiful  The Farm at South Mountain grounds.  Quiessence offers fine dining Tuesday-Saturday, with menus changing weekly to accommodate seasonal cuisine.

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Several retail shops and open-air markets dot the grounds of The Farm at South MountainBotanica showcases products for the home, garden, and kitchen from local artisans.  Succulentia features rare succulents and cacti, many grown on-site.  Utopia is a healing arts center, offering classes in yoga, dance, drum making, and other workshops, as well as massage and other therapeutic work.  Maya’s Farmers Market is available every Sunday from 9 a.m.-2 p.m., selling local organically grown fruits and vegetables, eggs, and seasonal flowers.

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The grounds of The Farm at South Mountain are exquisite, perfect for a relaxing family picnic or romantic  tete-a-tete.  The Farm at South Mountain is dog-friendly (on leash) and kid-friendly, but please be observant of signs and rules while on site.  No outside food is allowed, but The Farm Table has sandwich, salad, soup, and dessert offerings for a sublime picnic lunch under the pecan trees.

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{I was invited as a guest of IFWTWA to The Farm at South Mountain.  My opinions are 100% my own}

For more information about The Farm at South Mountain, please visit their website.  You can also find them on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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Heather 02/21/2015 at 9:56 pm

Hi! Its so nice to meet another Arizona blogger! I didn’t even know about this place at South Mountain. I have lived in Flagstaff since 2004, but spent 15 years in the Phoenix area. I’d love for you to stop by my blog sometime! Lets keep in touch!! I don’t know any other Arizona bloggers!

Cacinda Maloney 02/23/2015 at 10:17 am

So sorry I ended up missing the luncheon, but of course, the place looks a springy as ever! Hopefully I will be in town for the next IFWTWA luncheon!


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