Review of Lon's at the Hermosa Inn in Paradise Valley
Lon's - What I Liked
- The food
- Warm, rustic and upscale all at the same time
- Not pretentious
- Lovely al fresco dining on the patio
- Food is prepared using natural and organic sources.
Lon's - Be Aware
- Don't be in a rush at Lon's; slow and steady is the pace
- This is probably not a place for young children
Salt Seared Ahi Tuna at Lon's
© Judy Hedding
Lon's - The Mood
Lon's exudes Southwest, from the dark colors to the assortment of leather and hide covered chairs to the artwork. If you've been in the area for a few decades, you'll remember when the servers here wore bolo ties, Arizona's official neckware since 1973. They don't do that any longer. That's not to say that you can't wear your bolo tie with nice jeans, typical resort wear, or business attire (depending on why you are here).
Lon's is associated with a resort, The Hermosa Inn. Cowboy artist Lon Megargee, for whom Lon's is named, built The Hermosa Inn as his home and studio in an exclusive part of town known as Paradise Valley. You'll find adobe architecture and authentic Southwestern furnishings, along with original artwork painted by Lon Megargee. The restaurant is not an afterthought at this resort. It is a destination for both visitors and locals, as Arizona's only authentic hacienda.
Lon's - The Damages
Each of the two of us had a starter, I had a salad, companion had soup, we each had an entrée, we each had an extra side and we shared a dessert. Excluding beverages, tax and tip our total came to about $65 each. Of course, that was quite a bit of food, and you wouldn't necessarily need to order all that to be satisfied here. Entrées range in price from about $26 to $32. You can have a three course meal here for less than $50++. Lon's is a regular on Wine Spectator's award list for Best Wine Lists in Arizona.
My Review of Lon's
Pan Seared Scottish Salmon at Lon's
© Judy Hedding
Our experience at Lon's was an enjoyable one. Lon's has long been an acclaimed dining destination in the Phoenix area, and is usually included on AAA best restaurants and most romantic. Both Lon's and I have been around town for a long time, but this was only my second opportunity to experience it. I first visited in 2008, and was impressed. The menu has changed since then, but the core principles and the experience remains classic, with an enhanced commitment to organic and local ingredients where feasible.
We started with the Salt Seared Ahi Tuna ($15) and the Hamachi Ceviche ($16). Both were excellent, although I admit to an initial shock when the ceviche was placed before me with two whole baby octopuses on the plate. The Southwest Tortilla Soup ($8) was excellent, and I was very happy with the Hermosa Garden Salad ($9). For entrees we selected the Mediterranean Sea Bass ($32) at our server's suggestion, along with the Pan Seared Scottish Salmon ($29). The last time we were here we had the duck and the short ribs, so now we have four entrees that we can highly recommend! The Truffle Macaroni and Cheese ($10) was delicious, and the Creamed Garden Greens ($7) provided the green veggie to round out the meal. For dessert we ordered Lon's Candy Bar ($8.50). It was fine, but wouldn't be a favorite dessert of mine.
The presentation of food at Lon's is artful without being ostentatious. Lon's uses locally grown products where possible, including those from their own garden on the property. When they can't obtain an item locally (seafood, for example) the Chef orders it from specific locales that can provide him with fresh, organic product immediately.
Lon's is suitable for a business meeting, a banquet, a wedding rehearsal dinner, a first date or a 50th anniversary. There are private rooms of varying sizes available, including one in the wine cellar. The restaurant is divided into different dining areas, making it more intimate and not anything like a hotel ballroom. Still, on weekends, expect it to be a bit noisy.
If you enjoy eating outside, Lon's has one of the most appealing patios for al fresco dining that you'll find. No parking lot views, no traffic, no big screen TVs. It's a desert garden. Space heaters are provided during the cooler months.
Lon's at The Hermosa serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. Look for
opportunities to enjoy something special at Lon's, including jazz
brunches, wine dinners, weekly events like Wednesday Wines. Lon's also
usually participates in local culinary events, like Arizona
Restaurant Week where you can enjoy a prix
fixe menu three-course
Where to Find Lon's:
5532 North Palo Cristi Road
Paradise Valley, Arizona 85253
Date of review: May 2011.
All dates, times, prices and offerings are subject to change without notice.
As is common in the industry, the writer was provided with a complimentary meal for the purpose of the review. While it has not influenced this review, About.com believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. For more information, see our ethics policy.