Lon's at the Hermosa Meet-and-Greet with Chef Jeremy Pacheco
Photo: Jennifer Woods Aji pepper-marinated royal red shrimp with garden citrus, avocado, shaved vegetables & yuzu vinaigrette
We walked into Lon's at the Hermosa Tuesday evening just as the sun was setting and turning a bright orange -- while everything else on the horizon turned into one big black silhouette. Lucky us. We were there for a media dinner, a chance to meet Chef Jeremy Pacheco and learn more about Lon's, by way of an intimate sampling of the restaurant's menu surrounded by stacks of books and gilded framed cowboy art.
Photo: Jennifer Woods Lon's was quick to create us a fancy non-alcoholic libation, which arrived as a perfect sweet pulpy cooler with muddled strawberry, basil and grapefruit.
Lon's history as a cowboy artist's home is long (since the 1930s), but the hotel and restaurant as we know them have been around only since the late 90's. But this is definitely Old Arizona -- in a good way.
We were presented with a choice of entrees; the rest of the menu was served family-style, served with wine pairings from Arizona's own Pillsbury Wine Company.
Photo: Jennifer Woods This was the razzle-dazzle dish of cook-to-your-liking ahi tuni presented on a screaming hot Himalayan sea salt brick. Chef Pacheco poured the sauce over the fish to demonstrate just how sizzling-hot the salt slab remained after being pulled out of the oven.
Since becoming executive chef about a year ago, Jeremy Pacheco, who is a ninth generation (crazy, huh?!) Arizonan, grew up eating farm-to-table before it was oh-so-trendy, making fresh masa for tamales using fresh sweet corn on his family farm in Marana, near Tucson. In fact, Lon's sources wheat from Pacheco's father's farm to make Lon's house gnocchi. Lon's on-site chef's garden soon will be planted with the help of Singh Farms, which has wisely incorporated its compost/chef garden program at many restaurants around the Valley.