I'm going to bookmark this article to send to people who think Phoenix is nothing but tired retirees, soulless suburban sprawl, and right-wing politicians. Lots of innovation going on in America's sixth-largest and fastest-growing city.
By Ray Stern
By Ray Stern
By New Times
By Amy Silverman
By Stephen Lemons
By Stephen Lemons
By Monica Alonzo
By Chris Parker
"You have to start young," she says. "It would have been helpful if someone had started [teaching] me earlier."
Badman has become famous for her singular capability to turn vegetables into culinary masterpieces, but she admits she wasn't always a veggie lover.
In 2010, Badman made drastic changes to her diet and lifestyle (including giving up meat, though she still tastes everything that comes out of the kitchen at FnB). As a result, she began to focus more on cooking with vegetables both at home and at the restaurant, which in turn led to an interest in gardening. The hobby started with pots on her apartment patio and since has grown to include two four-by-four-foot garden beds, two large composters, and dozens of potted plants.
In those two small garden boxes Badman's planted dozens of varieties of herbs; produce including strawberries, I'itoi onions, and heirloom tomatoes; and a few unique plants like wheat berries. In the pots scattered around the yard and patio, you'll find everything from colorful edible flowers to a rare yuzu tree, barely big enough to bear fruit.
She uses some of her homegrown harvest at the restaurant but, for the most part, still sources her produce from local farmers.
"I'm not putting anyone out of business," Badman says.
Which is good, because she often partners with food producers like her friend and organic farmer Bob McClendon to bring hands-on food education programs such as Chefs in the Garden to local schools. The project really took off when Badman cooked lunch for some 550 students at Arcadia Neighborhood Learning Center, a public elementary and middle school in Scottsdale.
After learning that macaroni and cheese often was the only vegetarian option in the school cafeteria, Badman wanted to show the students truly nutritious and vegetable-focused food.
Badman's since gotten involved with two other schools, helping each to teach kids about the connections between science, food, and nutrition. At Arcadia Neighborhood Learning Center, she's worked with each class on projects including infusing olive oil, baking muffins, making pasta, and planting school gardens.
"I just want to make sure there's a connection to food," Badman says of the projects, which she tries to tie into whatever else the student's studying.
Her ultimate goal is to create a curriculum that schools could use as a model for incorporating food and nutrition education into the classroom on a regular basis. Badman says she'd like to see every chef in town adopt a school and work with students on projects similar to those she's been doing.
For now, she's been experimenting to figure out what works with each age group.
"I did learn [that] seeds and 6-year-olds aren't the best idea," Badman says with a half-smile. "We'll do plants next time."
But overall, the project is a success, at least when it comes to the students the chef has connected with so far. One parent told her he was shocked, after coming home from the grocery store, to see his child grab a bag of raw snap peas, rather than candy, for a snack.
"That made me happy," Badman says. "Because I grabbed the candy when I was a kid. If I can get one out of 40 to grab the snap peas, I'm happy." — Lauren Saria
Lisa Sette | Visual Art
From its earliest days, Lisa Sette Gallery has always been a grownup — even when its proprietor and namesake was still a kid.
As Old Town Scottsdale battled a reputation as a place to buy kokopellis and howling coyotes and downtown Phoenix struggled to keep a handful of galleries afloat at all, Lisa Sette quietly made a national and international reputation for herself as a gallerist who showed only the finest contemporary art — always with her own elegant appeal, and often from Arizonans like James Turrell and Angela Ellsworth, artists with reputations as storied as her own.
But today, as New Times prepares to present Sette with a well-deserved award for her leadership in the visual arts, we could just as easily present her with our prize for Urban Vision, as the recent news that Sette is leaving Scottsdale for midtown Phoenix is almost as exciting as any of the shows her gallery has hosted in its 28 years.
Sette began her gallery career in the living room of her Tempe home, showing the work of Arizona State University students. Later, she set up shop in two different spots on Mill Avenue, until one day, late attorney and art collector Sy Sacks walked into her small space and famously asked, as Sette recalls, "What the bleep are you doing here?"
Her response: "Who the heck are you?"
And his: "You should move to Scottsdale!"
The rest is history — and will be one for the books when Sette's final Scottsdale show, of the work of painter Carrie Marill, closes. The first Phoenix show, "Hello Midtown!," will open this summer in an Al Beadle building under renovation near Third Street and Thomas Road.
Sette has plans to shroud the semi-subterranean building in fabric. Beadle's signature beams will stay exposed. There will be plenty of wall space in a setting that makes sense in the desert, and Sette is excited about a lot of things — including the fact that she will finally have a kitchen for her staff to use. (Previously, they washed dishes in the bathroom of the Scottsdale gallery, which Sette says someone told her makes the room a "shnitchen.")