Tasty Spots in Phoenix

Have you ever had one of those days that started of really bad, but ended up on a positive note? This happened to me recently. I went in for my half way test of a medical study group I am part of and I did not do as well as I had hoped. I left feeling low. I just wanted to grab a coffee and sulk in misery. As I left the building I glanced up and caught site of this beautiful view of downtown Phoenix.

 On my way home I remembered I had seen a cool looking coffee house heading into downtown that I wanted to stop by. I was so happy when I saw it as I approached the freeway! It then dawned on me that I was supper hungry.  I had missed breakfast so I could take the test.

 As I pulled in I discovered there was a cute little lunch spot right next door. This is when my day got better! I checked out the menu and noticed that everything was the same price — $10. There were three options and they rotated depending on the day. There was an option for the meat lover, the vegetarian and the vegan. Each meal was under 600 calories and everything in it was locally grown and organic. I ordered the vegetarian option for because it was gluten free.

 The chef gave me the history of the restaurant. It was actually owned by a family doctor who set out to show that you can eat delicious healthy food. She bought both the houses that contained the restaurant and the coffee house and all the recipes are hers.  She also decorated them and made sure they stayed historically sound. Keeping the integrity of the food and the buildings were crucial to her.

Once I got my meal that came in a cute reusable box I sat down and ate. It was so yummy! The chef actually came and sat with me and gave me the encouragement I needed to hear. She told me what was in the food and how to actually make the meal at home. I was so touched. I don’t think she knew just what kind of impact she was having on me. I felt empowered to do better with my eating habits and I left with hope and belief in myself.
Before I left I had to take a look at all the art on the walls. Each piece was done by a child and was for sale. The proceed of the sale go to the victims of child abuse. This was my favorite piece:

As I made my way around the building I noticed this:

 As a former educator I had to take a peak inside. There was a nice selection of books kids could read and return.

Of course I love the art on the building!
Finally it was time for my coffee! 
I ordered the “Bullet”. Basically it is hot coffee with grass fed butter. The coffee is roasted locally in the third house on the property by this man making my coffee.
It was delicious! 
One of my favorite things about Phoenix is the street art. I smiled as I walked out to my car and saw this:
If you are in the area I highly recommend stopping by Tasty Box and Street Coffee . They are right next door and free parking in the back.
Until next time ~ Happy Feasting 🙂 

Travel: Great Places in Unexpected Locations

Today I explored Phoenix Arizona! I started off  in search of Mucho Mas Art Studio — a search it truly ended up being! I learned about this mexi-style boutique through my friend’s, Lisa Kettell Designs, Instagram feed. I knew I had to visit when I saw the gorgeous bright colors and unique art pieces — both traditional canvas and mixed media. I entered the address into my navigation system and set out on my journey. It ended up being more of a hunt than I anticipated. When I arrived at the location it appeared to not be there. Instead there was an adorable little market and chic bohemian store. I drove around the building and there I saw it in the back behind the ally — Mucho Mas! I found directions on what appeared to be the entrance of the store instructing me to go around the building and enter through Galeana 39.
Galeana 39 was a wonderful surprise! I was welcomed into the store by the owner, Curtis Parhams (Galeana39.com 602-559-7791).

Curtis told me the history of the store. It was named after the street of his first store he owned in New Mexico. He started his business with hand making toxin free essential oil candles — which are still the best sellers in his store.

He branched out finding global pieces that are one of a kind. There was a bed  from India to hand milled sea salt in beautiful hand sewn  bags made by  women in Mexico that helps support them and their families.

You can find Galeana 39 on Instagram @Galeana39 or visit the store Tuesday – Saturday 11-4.

I ventured towards the back of the store to Mucho Mas Art Studio.

It was like an amusement park for my eyes!

I was giddy with excitement as I wondered from art piece to art piece.
The walls were black which provided the perfect back drop to the bright colorful art the adorned them.The mex-style boutique not only is a place to purchase art, but also a studio and gallery. Classes are offered and there was a table in which artist work in the shop at various times. Art pieces vary from canvas to mixed media. A decked out rotary phone in gems was a fantastic show stopper. One of the most unique things I have ever seen were the prints by Emily Costello. These prints were actually small canvases.

Mucho Mas Art Studio is on Facebook and Instagram, @MuchoMasArtStuido or stop by Wednesday – Saturday 11-4.
My next shop I found on route to a store Curtis from Galeana 39 recommended (that is a little later in this article). Retro Ranch is next to a gentlemen’s club. I am so glad I parked and went in! This store had some of the best retro cowboy inspired swag and home decor around.

A line of cowboy boots (some with rhinestones) and cowboy hats greeted me upon entry.

There was a huge selection of denim. Everything from Wranglers to jean jackets. Across the store was a wonderful selection of retro home goods.

There even was a basket of free lemons by the from door. To learn more about Retro Ranch check out their website: http://www.retroranch.com or stop by the store Tuesday – Sunday 11-6 (4303 N 7th Ave Phoenix AZ).
My last shop of the day was recommended by Curtis from Galeana 39. It was a 1990’s vintage inspired minimalist boutique owned by Michelle Nuenz.

Michelle is a former graphic designer that started designing scarves. She eventually took the leap and opened Noons. The store had a chic modern industrial design.

Half the store had 1990,s vintage finds.

The rest was full of local artists and products. Michelle was a thoughtful and kind conversationalist whom was passionate about the community and environment.
For more information on the store location and hours contact Noons at info@noons.com and follow on Instagram @_ _ _noons.
My last stop of the day was an amazing coffee house.
This place is by far the coolest coffee stop I have ever been to — and that is saying a lot because I have been to a ton. Copper Star Coffee (4200 North 7th Ave in Phoenix 602-266-2136) is an old gas station that still has the vintage pumps in front of the store serving as the drive thru.

A nice patio welcomed customers as they entered the shop. Not only was the coffee house amazing to look at, but the menu was extensive and delicious. They even had gluten free options. They give you a complimentary pastry of your choice on your first visit. It was the perfect end to a fabulous day!

Each of these places I visited all had two things in common. They were huge supporters of their community and environment. Each place carried eco-friendly products and were passionate in their support of the environment. Next time you are in Phoenix I hope you take some time to explore a few of these places. They truly are diamonds in the rough!
 Until next time ~ Happy Exploring 😉