Attendees will eat up a new offering in Mesa, Arizona: the Fresh Foodie Trail. An 11-stop, self-guided route organized by Visit Mesa allows groups to get a true taste of a destination known for oranges, olives, peaches and wheat. Attendees can use free time to explore on their own or explore the trail as part of an off-site activity.
While not technically part of the trail, several new restaurants at Heritage Marketplace allow attendees to follow the produce from farm to table. James Beard nominee Gio Osso opened Nico Heirloom Kitchen, a West Coast-inspired Italian eatery, in May; the fast-casual Farm & Craft serves “wellness dishes” prepared raw, grilled or cooked in a stone hearth oven, as was the norm hundreds of years ago; and Sushi Brokers recently opened a third location at the mixed-used, pedestrian-friendly development.
Three spots on the Fresh Foodie Trail worth visiting:
1. Barnone at Agritopia
The latest addition to the popular Agritopia—arguably the most famous of the community’s urban, organic farms—is a craftsmen community where attendees can get a real taste of handmade Arizona products. Opened this winter, it includes a winery and a microbrewery, plus two restaurants.
2. Hayden Flour Mills
This family-owned mill at Sossaman Farms hosts educational seminars and experiential classes on making bread, pasta, beer, oils and other goods.
3. True Garden
This 5,000-sq.-ft. vertical garden is home to three farmers markets and a venue to educate on the virtues of organic growing practices and wellness. Private tours are available for groups of 10 or more.