Lon's at the Hermosa
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Lon's at the Hermosa Restaurant Review: A quaint collection of adobe casitas, The Hermosa Inn sits nestled on an idyllic plot of desert in posh Paradise Valley, five minutes but a world away from one of the Valley's busiest intersections. The former homestead of famed cowboy artist Lon Megargee, its focal point --- Lon's --- is as notable as its namesake previous tenant, set amid a gallery of rooms dripping with historic charm and Arizona artifacts. Chef James Ducas draws his inspiration from across the globe and cooks in sync with the seasons, so he might feature starters like cellar cured prosciutto with grilled organic peaches, aged balsamic and sunflower sprouts, or silky carrot, ricotta and pecan tortellini stuffed with lump crab and rock shrimp on a dollop of lemon and pea purée. Still, there’s a touch of cowboy in specialties such as the meaty smoked pork chop paired with heirloom squash-barley risotto and a tart-sweet accent of Arizona date mole. Servers are deft with recommendations and wine pairings selected from the fully-stocked underground cellar, and if they say something is fresh, it is, including produce plucked daily from the Hermosa's culinary gardens. During good weather, the patio is heaven on earth, and even in winter, diners converge outside, warmed by the flickering fire pits.