Santa Fe Ways For Spirited Spring Days

April showers do bring May flowers, but spring itself brings so much more to the City Different. The weather is beautifully breezy and the city is blooming with the bounty of events this season brings. If you’ve got spring fever, Santa Fe has the cure––and I’ve got the remedies for you to plant in your mind.

Santa Fe Shapes Inspiration

Shaping beauty is a Santa Fe specialty and if your taste for beauty runs to form and function, rest assured you’ll find both on April 25-26 at the Santa Fe Contemporary Clay Fair. This stunning array of work by the area’s best clay artists showcases functional artworks for daily use along with a bevy of clay whimsies guaranteed to make you smile.

Cheryl Hoagland’s handcrafted ceramic mug decorates your morning cuppa with Santa Fe color! (Photo Credit: Santa Fe Contemporary Clay Fair)

Cheryl Hoagland’s handcrafted ceramic mug decorates your morning cuppa with Santa Fe color! (Photo Credit: Santa Fe Contemporary Clay Fair)

The Clay Fair is conveniently located on the same street as the Santa Fe Children’s Museum, which means the kiddos can enjoy themselves at an Arbor Day celebration on Saturday, April 24. An all-day scavenger hunt is only part of the adventure. Budding gardeners can help plant fruit trees in the Earthworks Garden and aspiring young craftsmen get hands-on artistic experience making outdoor bird feeders.

Make May Your Artistic Adventure

The Clay Fair only lasts a weekend, but the Santa Fe Artists Market blossoms every Saturday (April through November under the Park Ramada; March and December on the Plaza by the Water Tower) at the Santa Fe Railyard. As you stroll though the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market, leave a space in your basket for an artful treasure or two. The market has a little bit of everything––you’ll find handspun wool and weavings, silver jewelry, paintings, prints, and who knows what else!

The sky’s the limit on creative ideas when SFUAD’s Vision Fest lights the way to May. (Photo Credit: Santa Fe University of Art and Design)

The sky’s the limit on creative ideas when SFUAD’s Vision Fest lights the way to May. (Photo Credit: Santa Fe University of Art and Design)

The merry month of May literally starts with the Santa Fe University of Art and Design’s annual Outdoor Vision Fest. Since May 1st is a Friday, this will be a don’t-miss TGIF! From 8:45 to 10:35 p.m., impressive outdoor installations and interactive multimedia creations by SFUAD students will light up the night at this free event. The 50-plus installations include a selection of guest artists––upping the ante on talent. The promise of food trucks onsite definitely adds to the City Different flavor.

Marshall Noice of Waxlander Gallery gets his teeth into the art experience on Canyon Road! (Photo Credit: visitcanyonroad.com)

Marshall Noice of Waxlander Gallery gets his teeth into the art experience on Canyon Road! (Photo Credit: visitcanyonroad.com)

May continues with more creative adventures that should find a home on any art lover’s calendar. May 8–9 sees the return of the wildly popular Passport to the Arts. That Friday night is a gallery-goer’s dream, with openings up and down historic Canyon Road. When Saturday dawns, artists line the street in choice spots for plying their brushes, cameras or sculpting tools. The following weekend, May 16–17, welcomes the annual Eldorado Studio Tour in Santa Fe’s “solar suburb.” When you see the work, you’ll understand why so many artists choose to live in this expansive enclave outside the city limits.

Native Treasures Festival’s 2015 Living Treasures are sisters Keri Ataumbi and Teri Greeves – and there’s even a breakfast with these talented artists on Wed. May 20! (Photo Credit: Native Treasures Indian Arts festival)

Native Treasures Festival’s 2015 Living Treasures are sisters Keri Ataumbi and Teri Greeves – and there’s even a breakfast with these talented artists on Wed. May 20! (Photo Credit: Native Treasures Indian Arts festival)

May 24–25 is another artistic bonanza, with not one but two events! Those who can’t wait for SWAIA’s August Indian Market get their satisfaction via the Native Treasures Indian Arts Festival. With more than 200 talents on display, this invitation-only exhibit at the Convention Center hosts the best of the best in indigenous arts––traditional to contemporary. Cathedral Park, on the north side of––you guessed it––our gorgeous Cathedral Basilica, is home to the Northern New Mexico Fine Arts and Crafts Guild over the same weekend. That Northern New Mexico moniker is the clue; the artists and craftsmen come from both Santa Fe and serene villages scattered throughout our scenic countryside.

Birds will chirp overhead as you view Mario Hinoso’s fanciful gourd sculptures down below at the Northern New Mexico Fine Arts and Crafts Guild Show. (Photo Credit: Northern New Mexico Fine Arts and Crafts Guild)

Birds will chirp overhead as you view Mario Hinoso’s fanciful gourd sculptures down below at the Northern New Mexico Fine Arts and Crafts Guild Show. (Photo Credit: Northern New Mexico Fine Arts and Crafts Guild)

Ride Into A Panoramic View (With A Cold One Waiting)

I got your attention with that “scenic countryside,” didn’t I? Since spring does make a gal want to get out and take a ride, the Outside Bike & Brew Festival is a must-do. This full week of two-wheeling adventure runs from May 13–17 and it’s a party-pack of fun, with a guided trail rides, clinics, the Santa Fe Century and leisurely culinary rides. Also on tap are three nights of beer festivals and nine bands including the hot, hot Reverend Horton Heat. The extremely refreshing and very popular Tour de Brewer rides from brewery to brewery anchors the ride schedule on Friday and Saturday, and bike clinics presented by professionals like pro mountain biker Rebecca Rusch are sure to please the pedal-happy.

Santa Fe is all ready to Bike and Brew and you’re invited to come along for the ride! (Photo Credit: Michael Clark; Rider: Mickey Fong)

Santa Fe is all ready to Bike and Brew and you’re invited to come along for the ride! (Photo Credit: Michael Clark; Rider: Mickey Fong)

Bring Your Spring Fling to Santa Fe

I won’t apologize for making your spring fever go up a few degrees––after all, that was the plan. Ideas and inspiration both await you, and all you have to do is spring into action by planning that Santa Fe getaway. You already know how to spring forward, so go ahead and take the leap into spring excitement City Different style.

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Show Us Your Santa Fe

Santa Fe’s Summer of Color is waiting in the wings but those of us in the know say, “Why wait?” Spring in Santa Fe is a rainbow of hues everywhere you look and there’s so much waiting for the perceptive eye (and camera lens). So rather than tell you, let us show you and also invite you to discover and share the colors you find with all who love our City Different.

Start in the Heart

There is definitely a beating heart in the center of our historic town. Like all Spanish Colonial cities, Santa Fe boasts a beautiful plaza anchoring a fascinating neighborhood that draws both locals and visitors to downtown adventures.

The Santa Fe Plaza is a peaceful, pretty picture all year round.

Down the street from the Plaza, the Romanesque towers of the Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis may be unfinished but the overall picture is still a beauty. (Photo Credit: LeRoy N. Sanchez)

The gorgeous glowing stained-glass windows of the Scottish Rite Temple are just one of the stars of this magnifiecnt Masonic edifice on the Paseo de Peralta.

Talk a Walk On the Art Side

At last count, Santa Fe’s museums numbered 17 and galleries stood at over 200; that means color comes in every form imaginable. With multiple arts districts in which to wander, something essentially Santa Fe is easy to find.

sculpture

Seeing Santa Fe on foot is a great way to appreciate the spring colors.

jewelry

Patina Gallery is just one of the ooh-ahh destinations for spring green in the West Palace Arts District.

site

Start at SITE Santa Fe and you can see the best of the Santa Fe Railyard arts district.

georgia

Even Georgia O’Keeffe posed for a New Mexico memory. (Photo 1950, Collection of the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Photographer Unknown)

zia

Santa Fe’s Bataan Military Museum offers a different picture of New Mexico history.

Santa Fe is a Feast for Body and Soul

A foodie’s fantasy destination like Santa Fe means a lot of point-and-shoot action before diners even pick up their forks. And no wonder––the variety of options is as awesome as the taste!

dinner

You can celebrate Christmas in springtime when you order your burrito Christmas-style at Tomasita’s!

margaritas

Think pink when you order a margarita at the Coyote Cantina but don’t neglect the standards––simply order a trio to share.

chocolate

The chocolate pyramid at The Teahouse is so artistic that you hesitate to dig in–– but it’s guaranteed to disappear after you put your camera down!

hats

You can shield your eyes while you’re on a photo shoot by picking up a colorful topper at Chapare.

moderngen

A visit to the bright, brand-new Modern General store makes a person feel sunny.

Santa Fe Grows as it Goes

The State of New Mexico’s motto––“Crescit Eundo” meaning “It Grows As it Goes”––is reflected in the cultural inroads spreading to parts of the city outside the downtown historc district. And the “going” is an exciting process worth exploring.

prescottstudios

Go West, Young Man, to see the colorful kinetic sculptures at Prescott Studios on Siler Road.

meowwolf

The Meow Wolf Art Collective is sure to drape their new space colorfully in an old bowling alley which is on its way to becoming an arts hot spot. (Photo Credit: Meow Wolf)

food

It’s easy to beat a case of the munchies with a visit to the westside Duel Brewery where there’s much more than just great beer.

santasidra

The cider craze has hit Santa Fe and Santa Sidra has the goods.

Mother Nature Reigns Over All

The piñon-juniper woodland in which Santa Fe is perched has natural wonders galore, and a visit with Mother Nature and her animal kingdom is always good for the spirit.

nest

In Santa Fe, spring deliveries are arriving daily! (Photo Credit: Scott Renbarger, Outspire Hiking)

monasterylake

With a good guide book, it doesn’t take long to find cool, cool water scenes and good fishing at places like Monastery Lake.

tentrocks

The weirdly fantastic landscape of Kasha Katuwe––Tent Rocks–– is worth a daytrip. (Photo Credit: Santa Fe Walkabouts)

Share Your Santa Fe

By now, your shutter finger is probably raring to go. If you’ve got something that’s simply Santa Fe in your photo roll, won’t you please share? Post it on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag #SantaFeColor for avid Santa Fe photo fans to see. If your album is currently devoid of Santa Fe delights, then spring is the ideal time to make a Santa Fe getaway part of your photographic history.

city-dusk

Don’t let the sun set on your springtime without adding Santa Fe to your photo roll.

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Picture Your Selfie in Santa Fe

Let critics say what they will about selfies – there’s no better way to remember one-of-a-kind places than by putting yourself right in the heart of the action. Iconic spots for making memories abound in Santa Fe, a truly iconic city in and of itself. Everyone has a favorite posing place, but I thought it would be interesting to take an informal selfie survey gathered from our photo-happy followers and friends.

Make A Point of Posing On the Plaza

I’m sure you’ve seen countless pictures with the Washington Mounment in the background when friends visit Washington D.C. You can simply transfer the scene to a portrait by the obelisk on our Santa Fe Plaza! The historic Palace of the Governors looks much as it did 400 years ago and makes a great backdrop for your shot. Just remember – if you’re including one of the Native American artists who sell their wares under the Palace portal, be sure to ask permission before taking the photo. When you tire of Plaza pics, trot over to the New Mexico Museum of Art to see some old school selfies.

In days gone by, getting an artistic selfie was a labor of love. (Photo Credit: Self-Portrait, Emil Bisttram, 1935, Collection of the New Mexico Museum of Art)

In days gone by, getting an artistic selfie was a labor of love. (Photo Credit: Self-Portrait, Emil Bisttram, 1935, Collection of the New Mexico Museum of Art)

Get Religion About Your Pictures

The Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis de Assisi, a long handle for the town’s tallest (yes!) building, has a host of spots for self-capture. Outside, you can’t beat the Bishop’s Garden, with an absolute perfection of blossoming trees and forsythia to showcase your pink cheeks. Or catch moment with the azure sky above the unfinished Romanesque belltowers (incomplete only because the founder of the Cathedral,Bishop Lamy, passed away). Inside, look to the soft flickering of red votive candles lit with requests to La Conquistadora.

Shadow self, silent night, Santa Fe #howtosantafe #simplysantafe #purenm

A photo posted by SantaFeRed (@santafered) on

You can give your selfie some mystery when you add Santa Fe history! (Photo Credit: @santafered)

 

Picture Yourself Artistic

Any time of day is a good time for a walk on Canyon Road. (Photo Credit: @fx_cordero)

Let’s face it – you’re already planning to stroll Canyon Road, so be sure your phone is charged. Renowned for the hundreds of galleries that line its path up the canyon, this historic street is a must-do activity in the City Different and it’s also lined with sculptures and colorful paintings to inspire your creativity.

studio notes ~ my studio mascot n'me….

A photo posted by dawn chandler (@taosdawn) on

Artist Dawn Chandler lets her Studio Mascot fill the frame! (Photo Credit: @taosdawn)

Sculpting the Perfect Selfie

Once Canyon Road whets your appetite for art, hop in the car and head to Shidoni Sculpture Garden for an afternoon of photo-crafting. Five miles north of the Plaza, Shidoni has a grassy lawn dotted with artworks ranging from sharply angled modernist steel to folk art whimsies. Shooting at Shidoni means you earn a post-production meal at the Tesuque Village Market for a taste of the Tesuque locals’ scene.

Picture yourself being served a wood-fired brick oven pizza at Tesuque Village Market. (Photo Credit: Tesuque Village Market)

Picture yourself being served a wood-fired brick oven pizza at Tesuque Village Market. (Photo Credit: Tesuque Village Market)

Put On A Fresh Face

Now that I have your attention––food photos always do that––you should know that our Santa Fe Farmers’ Market is one of the country’s best (Mother Nature knows!). With a plethora of farm-fresh goodies to savor at home or munch on the fly, foodies will definitely want to set up a tripod or just point and shoot. Our farmers are pretty photogenic too, so don’t hesitate to ask them to pose with you and their hand-crafted goodies or gorgeous greens.

Serving it up. Delicious Chef! #santafeculinaryacademy #santafefarmersmarket #chefrockydurham

A photo posted by Santa Fe Culinary Academy (@santafeculinaryacademy) on

Santa Fe Culinary Academy Chef Rocky Durham gets his selfie on at the Santa Fe Farmers Market. (Photo Credit: @santafeculinarycacdemy)

Make Your Portrait Garden Gorgeous

If you’re transfixed by scenic greenery, zip over to focus on the Santa Fe Botanical Garden. Two ramadas, signature stonework and the garden’s rotating sculpture exhibits all offer Instagram inspiration aplenty. By posing with Sun and Moon Mountains peeking over your shoulder or leaning on the signature red bridge, you’ll prove without a doubt that you know your way to Santa Fe.

Be Your Own Muse At Museum Hill

Once you’ve found wandered the Botanical Garden, you need only walk across the road to further your photo fantasies. Home to four separate museums (the Museum of Spanish Colonial Arts, the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture, the Museum of International Folk Art and the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian), Milner Plaza is the go-to for both panoramic vistas and great art. Since each museum has a gift shop that mirrors its collection, you can pick up some fun props before posing.

You provide the camera and Santa Fe will provide the colorful scene for a photo shoot.

You provide the camera and Santa Fe will provide the colorful scene for a photo shoot.

 

Star In Your Own Santa Fe Travelogue

Bring the selfie stick or leave it at home – either way, you’re sure to locate that perfect backdrop for your City Different getaway photo roll.You can even go pro by following the trail of the film professionals! Quirky or sedate, wedding party shenanigans or hiking in the high country, Santa Fe has been photogenic for centuries. It’s never too late for you to get in the picture, too!

 

 

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Greening Up Spring in Santa Fe

Spring cleaning time: Out with the old, in with the new! Last month, I took on the confusion around Old Mexico vs. New Mexico and that put me in the mood for busting another Santa Fe myth. My target is spring green – I’m talking about the Santa Fe landscape in spring and how it defies expectations.

The Piñon Tree Holds Star Status

Locals get a good laugh whenever out-of-state news featuring New Mexico show a stately saguaro cactus towering over the desert landscape…of Arizona! Just like the chronic New Mexico/Mexico mix-up, somehow a story has grown about Santa Fe being a mountain desert. The mountain part is spot-on. At 7,000 feet, that appellation is totally accurate and gorgeous to boot. But the desert part? Just ask the Arizonans who come to Santa Fe for our cool mountain air. The reality is Santa Fe’s is a Piñon-Juniper Woodland! The piñon, our state tree, shares its homeland with the humble and hardy juniper and both thrive with equal tenacity, easily living hundreds of years.

Piñon and juniper offer a dramatic backdrop for a hike at Cerrillos Hills State Park. (Photo credit: Cerrillos Hills State Park)

Piñon and juniper offer a dramatic backdrop for a hike at Cerrillos Hills State Park. (Photo credit: Cerrillos Hills State Park)

While healthy piñons and junipers can be spotted on any residential street, a broader view of the natural habitat is warranted. A visit to Cerrillos Hills State Park is a great idea. The low-lying pinon-juniper woodland is readily apparent in Cerrillos Hills, and rangers offer fascinating facts about the flora and fauna. If there’s a budding geologist in your mix, a trip to La Bajada with Outspire Hiking geologist/guide Scott Renbarger gives you a stone-solid grounding in Santa Fe’s ancient landscape.

Santa Fe Corrals Cactus

Santa Fe gardens have plenty of cacti for spring blooming – but that’s from being Southwestern, not from being a desert. Local gardeners love the low level of maintenance required. Drought-tolerant prickly pear and cholla, and those who know their succulent stuff, add New Mexico pincushion or fishhook cacti for variety.

Prickly pear pricks up appetites with jelly made from its paddles, and lucky lookers might spot some at the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market. I love to spice things up with prickly pear green chile jam from the Santa Fe School of Cooking Market (hint: there’s also prickly pear syrup to glaze that Easter ham). And a prickly pear margarita at The Shed or the Amaya Bar at the Hotel Santa Fe makes for a memorable TGIF.

You’ll fee in the pink when the Santa Fe color arrives via a prickly pear margarita. (Photo credit: virutaltourist.com)

You’ll fee in the pink when the Santa Fe color arrives via a prickly pear margarita. (Photo credit: virutaltourist.com)

How Does A Santa Fe Garden Grow?

The 2013 opening of the Santa Fe Botanical Garden gave local plant lovers a boost; updating botanic knowledge with the Plant of the Month is a snap. Over fifteen years of patient planning became a 14-acre home for a host of native species that create a picturesque setting for site-specific sculpture exhibits. The Orchard Gardens are now complete, and regular lectures and workshops are a popular way to expand your personal knowledgebase. Phase Two, Ojos y Manos: Eyes and Hands, an educational and cultural center, is plowing its way toward an opening in 2016.

Birds of more than one kind of feather land in the Santa Fe Botanical Garden. (Photo credit: Santa Fe Botanical Garden)

Birds of more than one kind of feather land in the Santa Fe Botanical Garden. (Photo credit: Santa Fe Botanical Garden)

NOT being a desert has growing advantages, evident on a Santa Fe Garden Club Tour. As soon as April flowers start blossoming, the Club begins Pequeno (meaning small in Spanish) Tours. The experience lasts three to four hours and is offered mid-April through October, taking visitors to three stunning residences with gorgeous gardens in the company of a knowledgeable guide. Seeing native plants and exotic species is sure to whet your interest to return for Behind Adobe Walls, a pair of Tuesday tours (July 21 and 28) that visits eight fabulous homes set amidst graceful garden scenery. These tours are a bonus, because the education on beautiful blooms showcases the architectural wonders of Santa Fe style.

Santa Fe Has Hacienda History

Thinking about signature dwellings leads me – literally – to El Rancho de las Golondrinas, one of my favorite places for enjoying New Mexico’s panoramic landscape. With April’s arrival, El Rancho welcomes spring with docent tours (Monday–Friday), perfect for getting the backstory on this historic ranch museum. The events calendar kicks off May 2 and 3 with Battlefields & Homefronts New Mexico: The Civil War and More. Starting in June, self-guided adventures are the modus operandi Wednesday through Sunday; summer to fall, weekends are ripe with cultural experiences that highlight New Mexico’s heritage and the legacy of its hardworking inhabitants.

A Civil War weekend at El Rancho de las Golondrinas gives a southwestern slant to the battle of Blue and Gray. (Photo credit: El Ranchi de las Golondrinas)

A Civil War weekend at El Rancho de las Golondrinas gives a southwestern slant to the battle of Blue and Gray. (Photo credit: El Ranchi de las Golondrinas)

Legacy brings Leonora Curtin to mind. A nature lover who spent much of her late 1800s childhood in Santa Fe, her book Healing Herbs of the Upper Rio Grande is the result of her fascination with the native herbs plied by curanderas, natural healers who doctored rural New Mexico villagers. The Leonora Curtin Wetland, a pristine 35-acre preserve named for this avid naturalist lies adjacent to El Rancho de las Golondrinas, which Curtin purchased with her mother in 1932. Open May to October on Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. to noon and Sundays from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m., the preserve offers free guided walks by Botanical Garden docents on the first and third Saturday. Located in a rare natural cienega (the Spanish word for marsh), the wetland boasts three distinct plant zones well worth examining.

Climate + Countryside = The City Different

I’ve made my case for closer examination of Santa Fe’s nature. Desert, no; dry, yes – a real plus since our low humidity makes the City Different utterly delightful whether temperatures go high or low. Ideal weather is definitely part of our appeal, and so is the lack of biting insects that can’t survive our altitude. I can promise you this: When your Santa Fe getaway reveals the climate-created color in our piñon-juniper woodland, you’ll never think of Santa Fe as home to saguaros again!

St. Francis, Santa Fe’s patron saint, knows that spring is a harbinger of Santa Fe’s Summer of Color.

St. Francis, Santa Fe’s patron saint, knows that spring is a harbinger of Santa Fe’s Summer of Color.

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Santa Fe Women Make It Happen

As Women’s History Month draws to a close, let it be known that Santa Fe women are still making history. This trend began when the first settlers’ wives joined the indigenous New Mexico female population and it shows no sign of slacking. Santa Fe was recently named the #1 place in the U.S. for women-owned businesses and with a rich heritage created by impressive female figures from the past, it’s no wonder Santa Fe thrives under today’s busy feminine hands. Modern Santa Fe women totally deserve the notice they’ve earned and the round-up below is an introduction to ladies worth reading about.

The Kitchens of the World Learn From Santa Fe

You’ve heard it said that a woman’s place is in the kitchen but that doesn’t mean staying home. Since 1984, the Santa Fe School of Cooking has put New Mexico’s regional cuisine and culinary traditions on the map for food-lovers around the globe. Born of founder Susan Curtis’ midlife career switch, the school has grown into the expert on southwestern flavors, including the Three Sisters—beans, corn and squash—and chile, our signature crop.

Southwestern Bootcamp at the Santa Fe School of Cooking offers some heart-pounding excitement in the kitchen (Photo Credit: Santa Fe School of Cooking)

Southwestern Bootcamp at the Santa Fe School of Cooking offers some heart-pounding excitement in the kitchen (Photo Credit: Santa Fe School of Cooking)

Classes run the gamut from traditional dishes all the way to the three-day intensive Southwest Culinary Bootcamp, an immersion into authentic ingredients and techniques. Specialty experiences welcome noted experts like Oaxacan chef Susana Trilling and cheese maven Laura Werlin; renowned Southwestern savant Cheryl Alters Jamison is a regular in the school’s kitchen. Restaurant Walking Tours created by Director of Operations Nicole Curtis Ammerman are a TripAdvisor favorite and the online market has those one-of-a-kind items guaranteed to keep the creativity flowing.

Chef Michelle Roetzer leads the way on a Santa Fe School of Cooking Restaurant Walking Tour. (Photo Credit: Eric Swanson)

Chef Michelle Roetzer leads the way on a Santa Fe School of Cooking Restaurant Walking Tour. (Photo Credit: Eric Swanson)

Chef Michelle Roetzer, who somehow finds time to teach at the Cooking School, boasts a day job as head of the Santa Fe Community College Culinary Arts Program. Mica is revered for mentoring up-and-comers, whom she fondly calls her “cheflings.” The balance of Culinary Arts talent includes Helen Singleton Nichols, lead pastry chef who began teaching there in 2012 and chef/pâtissière Leslie Chavez, named “2013 Chef of the Year” by the New Mexico Culinary Association.

Santa Fe Women Cook Up A Storm

Santa Fe’s food culture extends to caterers and restaurant kitchens. Chef Lois Ellen Frank of Red Mesa Cuisine has dedicated herself to keeping America’s indigenous techniques and flavors alive. Her fascinating lineage, Kiowa Nation on her mother’s side and Sephardic on her father’s, led Chef Lois to a Ph.D. in Culinary Anthropology from the University of New Mexico. More than 20 years spent documenting the foodways of Native America culminated in “Foods of the Southwest Indian Nations,” an engaging read featuring traditional and contemporary recipes.

Chef Lois Ellen Frank makes frybread magic with prickly-pear syrup and fresh berries. (Photo Credit: Lois Ellen Frank)

Chef Lois Ellen Frank makes frybread magic with prickly-pear syrup and fresh berries. (Photo Credit: Lois Ellen Frank)

After 17 years of catering memorable parties, Catherine O’Brien and Glenda Griswold set up permanent shop at Terracotta Wine Bistro. This casual, fun downtown spot is a locals’ favorite, not only for the wine list and the food flare (oh, those onion rings!) but also for the central location down the street from the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum.

The good news? The lady of the house doesn’t have to cook because breakfast is served all day at Café Pasqual’s! (Photo Credit: Café Pasqual’s)

The good news? The lady of the house doesn’t have to cook because breakfast is served all day at Café Pasqual’s! (Photo Credit: Café Pasqual’s)

The ladies run the show, too. Café Pasqual’s menu perfection was patiently honed by Kathryn Kagel, who now gets to enjoy ownership and let someone else do the cooking. Kagel’s commitment to the best includes buying from certified organic producers and many menu items are designed to morph into vegetarian, vegan or gluten-free delights. Two cookbooks show the fruits of her labor and so does the line out the door for breakfast – hint, go early!

Take a Santa Fe Hike, Sister!

After breakfast, our gals know how to get out of doors. Outspire Hiking, the brainchild of Karen Dennison, has a proven record on finding the best spots for panoramic senery. A biologist-turned-guide, Karin is also an avid fly-fisher and co-authored a book on regional fly-tieing; her gal-guides are just as knowledgeable about the area as the guys. Sue Mally, co-owner of Santa Fe Walkabouts, took the long way round to get to Santa Fe—she’s a native of Burma—but she’s 100% local now and Walkabouts’ tours offer an insider’s view of the Land of Enchantment. And if you just want to sit back and listen, riding along on a Custom Tour by Clarice means you’ll see all the downtown sights while absorbing the local lore when Clarice Coffey herself is at the wheel.

Santa Fe’s Designing Women Make It Beautiful

You never know who will show up to have a portrait painted by Barbara Meikle. (Photo Credit: Barbara Meikle Fine Art)

You never know who will show up to have a portrait painted by Barbara Meikle. (Photo Credit: Barbara Meikle Fine Art)

If you think Santa Fe’s artistic legacy is being neglected, think again! Not only do women own plenty of galleries, they craft the pottery, paintings, photographs and jewelry shown there. Pet traveler? Caitlin Elizabeth Photography will make a record of Fifi’s visit to Santa Fe. Prefer a painting for the family room? Barbara Meikle opened Meikle Fine Art after demand for her colorful images became so high that setting up her easel in the gallery made life simpler. Those who love the Midas touch always visit The Golden Eye, where the legacy of hand-crafted jewelry established by Norah Pierson is kept alive by a bevy of talented craftswomen.

Come Celebrate the SantaFeminine

I could go on, but I suspect I’ve said enough to make you start checking plane fare. Women’s History Month may be ending but Santa Fe celebrates the skills and dedication of the distaff side all year long. Adam’s life became richer once Eve was in the picture, and your life will do the same when you visit Santa Fe to discover the women of the City Different.

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Santa Fe: A Spring Rainbow of Color

Santa Fe Baldy still has its white cap, inviting Ski Santa Fe lovers to take those last few runs, but winter is officially over – today is the first day of spring! Santa Fe is #3 on Travel + Leisure’s list for best U.S. weather, thanks in part to more than 320 annual days of sunshine. Right now, that friendly sun is painting Santa Fe with swaths of color. There’s more than one way to explore the City Different through the eyes of an artist.

Santa Fe Is Right Before Your Eyes

Santa Fe is embarking on a Summer of Color, but maybe you just can’t wait that long. There’s nothing quite like spring color and I know just where to find it. A hike along the Dale Ball Trails in search of wildflowers is on my itinerary. This 22-mile trail network is perfect for those who simply want a stroll in the fresh mountain air, as well as avid hikers and bikers who crave the stunning view of downtown Santa Fe these trails offer. Two trailheads, one where Canyon Road intersects with Cerro Gordo Road and one in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains on Hyde Park Road offer choice scenic greenery. Of course, a sunset hike promises a dazzling display of the mountains aglow with reds and purples!

Santa Fe has unforgettable sunsets – nightly!

Santa Fe has unforgettable sunsets – nightly!

After an invigorating hike, you might be ready to catch some color at a different pace. Fortunately for your inner artist, that’s easy to find – simply make tracks for the New Mexico Museum of Art, getting a jump on the Summer of Color with the Colors of the Southwest exhibition. Iconic works by renowned New Mexico artists past to present offer an education in the Land of Enchantment’s magic. A variety of media is on display with watercolors, ceramics, oils and more showcasing the signature blend of light and color that consistently draws a rich pool of talent to New Mexico.

In their time, modernists like Dorothy Morang made the Santa Fe landscape look new.  (Photo courtesy of the New Mexico Museum of Art | Dorothy Morang, Sunrise, 1940, watercolor on paper, Collection of the New Mexico Museum of Art. Photo: Blair Clark)

In their time, modernists like Dorothy Morang made the Santa Fe landscape look new.
(Photo courtesy of the New Mexico Museum of Art | Dorothy Morang, Sunrise, 1940,
watercolor on paper, Collection of the New Mexico Museum of Art. Photo: Blair Clark)

Put That Color on My Plate Please

Spring equals eating green in my recipe book. The stewpot has moved to the back of the shelf in favor of the season’s first greens from the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market. On Saturday mornings, you’ll find locals snapping up garden-fresh goodies. Baby spinach is on my shopping list, but anything green might end up in my market basket nestled next to a bar of handmade Milk and Honey soap or a hank of handspun yarn. The Farmers’ Market is great for breakfast too – the Café’s fresh Aroma coffee is the perfect companion for people watching. I’ll even share my secret – bring that traveling mug and a cuppa joe is only a buck fifty!

The Santa Fe Farmers’ Market is a must-do destination for locals and visitors alike.

The Santa Fe Farmers’ Market is a must-do destination for locals and visitors alike.

If coffee has been banned from your beverage lexicon, you’re in luck! Santa Fe has the cold-press juice craze covered. Verde Juice’s bounty runs from the refreshing Apple Cleanse, a cucumber blend rich in iron, to my personal favorite, the Piña Verde, with just enough sweetness to sweeten my morning. Low-calorie and delicious, that’s my wake-up motto! BODY of Santa Fe offers up their Alchemy in a glass – a spicy garden cleanse with a hit of jalapeño. The newbie on the block, Modern General, has a turmeric health shot blended with orange, honey and cayenne that is the anti-inflammatory answer to whatever ails you.

Santa Fe Makes You Hungry For More

I get by early with small bites but when lunch or dinner rolls around, my appetite becomes huge in a hurry. I appreciate Vinaigrette’s heap of seasonal greens, which are mighty without being loaded with calories. The self-titled “salad bistro” lives up to its appellation with a creative collection, from All Kale Caesar to Omega and everything in-between. I love the colorful names, but I love the greenery even more. And my honey, who actually needs the calories (color me jealous), has a choice of fish or meat options for his higher fuel requirements.

Applewood-smoked bacon is a special surprise on Santacafe’s Maine Lobster Salad.

Applewood-smoked bacon is a special surprise on Santacafe’s Maine Lobster Salad.

When I crave casual elegant dining, I choose Santacafé. I can honestly say I’ve never been disappointed with anything I order, but give me a Spring Citrus Salad with avocado and jicama for lunch or the Maine Lobster on iceberg lettuce for dinner, and I am one happy camper. I will, however, admit to the Santacafé burger when my need for green can only be satisfied by green chile!

Make Santa Fe Your Fresh Adventure

Still making plans for a spring escape? Look no further than Santa Fe for the new, the old, the modern and the ancient because we’ve got it all. Grab a getaway special for a fresh take on the City Different, and along with one-of-a-kind souvenirs and tales of artistic adventures, you’ll go home with a rainbow of rich memories about spring.

Bridge the time between winter and summer with a spring getaway in Santa Fe!

Bridge the time between winter and summer with a spring getaway in Santa Fe!

 

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No Passport Needed To Visit Santa Fe!

Confusion about New Mexico and how it relates to Old Mexico is a much-anticipated monthly highlight of “One of Our Fifty is Missing,” a long-standing, tongue-in-cheek feature in New Mexico Magazine. Santa Feans always have a good chuckle about this, such as when “The Bachelor” recently aired its Santa Fe episode and one lovely lady committed this classic gaffe. So too did the esteemed New York Times Magazine with a cover map of the U.S. identifying the Land of Enchantment as “Mexico”! While our neighbor to the south is indeed enchanting, New Mexico is a perennial award winner on its own for authentic experiences in history, culture, the outdoors, and unforgettably satisfying cuisine

While many people find The City Different as new and adventurous as a trip to another country, the only borders you need to cross are state lines!

Feed On New Mexico’s Heritage

There’s no doubt that Santa Fe’s regional cuisine has Old World roots. After all, our historic hamlet, founded by Don Pedro de Peralta in 1607, is the country’s oldest capital city. Four centuries have given us plenty of time to refine the recipes!

An 1883 engraving from Harper’s Weekly shows off Santa Fe’s mountain setting.

An 1883 engraving from Harper’s Weekly shows off Santa Fe’s mountain setting.

Delicious Mexican-style tacos and tamales can be discovered all over town, but the Santa Fe lifestyle continually draws talented chefs here to experiment with ingredients from the Old and New World alike. Green chile tempura? Shohko Café can do that. Oaxacan Black Bean Mole? Martin Rios—2015 James Beard nominee for Best Southwest Chef—regularly revisits his Mexican roots at Restaurant Martin. Francophiles note that L’Olivier Chef Xavier Grenet is one of only 1,300 chefs chosen for the March 19th Gout de France, an international celebration of French cuisine. Ahmed Obo tantalizes diners with a whole new hemisphere of African flavors at Jambo Café. You can even enjoy a bit of Santa Fe spice with your TGIF margarita thanks to the Inn and Spa at Loretto Living Room and their killer Serrano margarita built around chile-infused Herradura tequila.

Serrano chiles heat up a bottle of Herradura at the Inn of Loretto Living Room.

Serrano chiles heat up a bottle of Herradura at the Inn of Loretto Living Room.

Those who like it hands-on can take a round-the-world journey with cooking classes at Las Cosas. March offers a culinary trip to Ireland with a St. Paddy’s Day cooking adventure led by Irish chef Audel Cayce. Spring brings the taste of tagines at an April 7th Moroccan feast. On April 10, students can weigh in on a signature Italian dish when Chef Christine Hickman presents recipes from her upcoming gnocchi cookbook.

Santa Fe Sounds Are Global

Locals love to celebrate the rich sonic traditions brought north from Mexico. The fall Fiesta de Santa Fe Mariachi concert is an annual must, and a guitar case parked next to a Santa Fe Plaza park bench is a common sight, but those who take time to tune into the musical landscape of Santa Fe will enjoy year-round no-visa access to our global bounty.

This month, Les Violons du Roy, a Canadian chamber orchestra renowned for virtuosic flare, performs a concert of European Baroque classics on Sunday, March 22 at the historic and gorgeous Lensic, followed a week later by laid-back contemporary Hawaiian music from HAPA on Sunday, March 29. El Farol offers musical transportation to Spain via riveting Friday Flamenco Dinners created by Chef Giovanni.

Friday Flamenco at El Farol is a fiery affair! (Photo Credit: El Farol Santa Fe)

Friday Flamenco at El Farol is a fiery affair! (Photo Credit: El Farol Santa Fe)

The Anasazi Restaurant and Bar offers its own sexy Saturday scene with Madrileño singer-songwriter Jesus Bas, my Tango partner and I save Tuesday nights for Argentine Tango Milonga at El Meson, and a live drum circle makes everyone in the vicinity beat feet to the Railyard Performance Center for Elise Gent’s Saturday African dance class.

Style Me Santa Fe

Old-world mantillas worn by wives of the conquistadors make a yearly appearance at La Merienda, the Fiesta de Santa Fe fashion show of vintage and traditional dresses preserved by La Sociedad de Folklorica. Santa Fe style knows no boundaries, however, and the Museum of International Folk Art gift shop satisfies a yen for the unusual while I await the arrival of fanciful garb from around the world at July’s International Folk Art Market.

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Exquisite color meets ethnic design at the International Folk Art Market in Santa Fe.

 

Origins on West San Francisco Street has successfully intrigued the style-conscious for more than 35 years with a mind-boggling display of fashion from the far corners of the globe. Likewise, my home décor has become a whole rainbow more colorful since I discovered Le Bon Marche in the Santa Fe Railyard. Then don’t even get me started on jewelry—although I will share my favorite window-shopping: Charlotte on the Plaza, where drool-worthy German engineering meets Euro-style gorgeous!

Santa Fe Has A Colorful International Palette

Summer is around the corner, and the City Different will burst into a kaleidoscope of hues for the 2015 Summer of Color, starting with May’s Passport to the Arts. Spring offers superb weather and plenty of deals for globe-trotting visitors to take a Santa Fe spring break. In case you missed it, there’s still time to win a five-day getaway to our universe of colorful culture—and, don’t forget, you can leave the passport at home!

Picture yourself in Santa Fe!

Picture yourself in Santa Fe!

 

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Santa Fe + Women = A Legacy Of Great Ladies

March Madness may be on everyone’s mind right now but I’d be even crazier not to mention that March is also Women’s History Month! Santa Fe’s past, present and—no doubt—future are peopled with more than just conquistadors and cowboys. There’s a rich history of notable women who made significant contributions to the lore and legacy of The City Different. Let me introduce you to a few of these colorful ladies.

The Art Of Santa Fe Is A Historic Fact

The foremost female name that pops into people’s minds when they think Santa Fe is undoubtedly Georgia O’Keeffe. No wonder, as not only is O’Keeffe one of few women to have a museum named for her, that museum is chock full with rarely-seen artwork from her body of work and her contemporaries. The collection is ever-expanding, as the museum staff is incredibly diligent about seeking new acquisitions. Annual themed exhibits feature signature paintings on loan from private collections that provide a rare opportunity to view these works. O’Keeffe possessed a phenomenal attunement to color and form, something that helped her translate her love for the New Mexican landscape into the work that helped make Santa Fe a legend in the art world.

 

Georgia O’Keeffe made tracks to New Mexico in more than one way as this historic photograph by Maria Chabot proves. (Photo courtesy of Georgia O’Keeffe Museum)

Georgia O’Keeffe made tracks to New Mexico in more than one way as this historic photograph by Maria Chabot proves. (Photo courtesy of Georgia O’Keeffe Museum)

On the subject of love for the Land of Enchantment, one need only look at the work of Laura Gilpin for an education in black and white on all things New Mexico. This noted photographer had a firm command of the shutter and found her vision in the people and the landscape of the Southwest. Gilpin is known as a master of platinum printing and her evocative prints have found a home in museums around the world. Her legendary photographs of the Native American residents of the Southwest resulted from an unparalleled access to her subjects and created an enduring portrait of their lives.

 

This 1979 photograph is witness to the fact that a large format camera was Laura Gilpin’s life companion.

This 1979 photograph is witness to the fact that a large format camera was Laura Gilpin’s life companion.

The indigenous residents of New Mexico attract devoted patrons of the arts and Mary Cabot Wheelwright’s name is indelibly attached to Santa Fe. A Boston heiress, Wheelwright spent her early years in the lap of East Coast luxury. No doubt her metropolitan crowd was mightily astonished when she fell for the New Mexico lifestyle and made Santa Fe her home. Her passion resulted in one of the city’s most memorable institutions, the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian on Museum Hill, which stands as a testament to her mission of preserving the artifacts of the Southwest’s Native American culture–and it’s also home to my favorite trading post.

The Southwest Comes To Life In Words

Some of Santa Fe’s notable ladies followed a passion of another sort: they simply followed their husbands! Susan Shelby Magoffin, who left a fascinating diary detailing her experiences on the Old Santa Fe Trail, was the wife of a 19th century trader. She was born into a privileged Kentucky family and ended up on the Santa Fe Trail with “fourteen big wagons with six yoke each, one baggage wagon, one dearborn with two mules, our own carriage with two more mules, and two men on mules driving the loose stock.” While the Magoffins eventually returned to set up housekeeping in Missouri, Susan’s diary remains an invaluable record of the conditions of the era, its people and events, and all from a distinctly female perspective.

When Susan Magoffin reached the end of the Santa Fe Trail on the Plaza, it looked mighty different than it does today. (Photo courtesy of the National Archives and Records Administration)

When Susan Magoffin reached the end of the Santa Fe Trail on the Plaza, it looked mighty different than it does today. (Photo courtesy of the National Archives and Records Administration)

Mrs. Magoffin was not the only female writer to be taken with New Mexico. Although Willa Cather never lived in Santa Fe, she wrote an intriguing tale about one of Santa Fe’s most compelling figures, Bishop Jean-Baptiste Lamy. Bishop Lamy is responsible for the magnificent Cathedral that towers (figuratively) over all the other downtown buildings. In fact, city codes stipulate that no downtown building can exceed the height of the Cathedral. Cather was a skilled author and brought this historical figure and Santa Fe legend to life in her novel, Death Comes for the Archbishop.

Santa Fe Ladies Love Leisure Time Entertainment

Thoughts of compelling Santa Fe characters bring Doña Tules to mind. Talk about a unique individual! Maria Gertrudis Barceló held court at her Burro Alley saloon (near today’s Palace Restaurant) and “La Tules” was renowned as a canny card player, separating her male customers from their gold on a regular basis. Susan Magoffin wrote that Doña Tules “made her living by running a house where open gambling, drinking, and smoking were enjoyed by all.” Saloon-keeping certainly has its darker side, but I imagine enjoyment did ensue!

Santa Fe Celebrates Women Year-Round

There’s so much more to learn about these and the other remarkable women who enriched our lives with their art, scholarship and pioneering energy. If you have a budding scholar in your midst, consider the Women’s International Study Center: residency programs include a stay in a gorgeous eastside Santa Fe adobe. After all, a woman’s work is never done, whether it takes place in a low-slung adobe or a high-rise tower.

Santa Fe knows a little something about this—we were just declared The #1 Best Place In America For Women-Owned Businesses. The study by NerdWallet noted, “New Mexico’s capital city tops our list for its high percentage of businesses owned by women and its affordable cost of living. The city’s tourism industry attracts at least 1 million visitors each year who come to enjoy the city’s rich arts culture, adobe-style architecture and breathtaking views of the southern Rocky Mountains. Over 80% of the city’s restaurants are locally owned, including Annapurna’s World Vegetarian Café.”

Think you want to relocate or launch your business here? Try the National Association Of Women Business Owners, Northern New Mexico Chapter to get started.

No matter what you do or where you do it, just be sure your work includes a Santa Fe getaway to be inspired as you celebrate this month for, by and about YOU.

Start adding color and history to your bucket list by visiting the end of the Santa Fe Trail in the heart of the Santa Fe.

Start adding color and history to your bucket list by visiting the end of the Santa Fe Trail in the heart of the Santa Fe.

 

 

 

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Spring Into Santa Fe With Style

The first crocus has popped a yellow blossom up through the earth and fruit trees are covered with buds. Santa Fe is warming up daily as days grow longer and the sun moves higher in the sky. I’m high on the promise of spring adventures. The season is the ideal time to visit, offering a host of events to tempt the enterprising traveler.

Style Yourself Creative
March may sometimes come in like a lion, but around here you take less notice because it’s DIY Santa Fe month! Thanks to Santa Fe Creative Tourism, “Do It Yourself” takes on meaning way beyond home repair projects.

A visit to Santa Fe is the ideal way to heat up your creativity! (Photo Credit: Santa Fe Creative Tourism)

A visit to Santa Fe is the ideal way to heat up your creativity! (Photo Credit: Santa Fe Creative Tourism)

Have an urge to play with clay? Magpie Pottery teaches you to transfer images onto clay and a class at Heidi Loewen Porcelain Gallery means you’ll watch the clay dance on the wheel. Prefer to dance with your feet? African Dance with Elise Gent at the Railyard Performance Center and Monday Night Swing Dance at the Odd Fellows Hall tap you into a creative rhythm. You can craft a photographic book from start to finish, master construction of an art book or make an archivist’s relic from found objects. Painting and drawing classes abound and photo junkies will wax enthusiastically about choices that include encaustic for photographers. Those whose creativity runs to food are not ignored. A pop-up paleo dinner at the Santa Fe Culinary Academy delves into the diet of the ancestors and chef Paddy Rawal of Raaga brings the flavors of India to the Academy through his Native Harvest meal. No matter what ingredients are essential in your recipe for creativity, there’s something for every taste.

There’s no charge for the view at a Santa Fe Culinary Academy pop-up dinner. (Photo Credit: Santa Fe Culinary Academy)

There’s no charge for the view at a Santa Fe Culinary Academy pop-up dinner. (Photo Credit: Santa Fe Culinary Academy)

Sing A Song Of Spring
Music has echoed throughout Santa Fe’s historic adobe downtown for centuries. Our history is tuned to the sounds of flamenco guitar, old time bluegrass, chamber music and everything in between. Spring is no exception to Santa Fe’s repertoire, with renowned mezzo-soprano (and New Mexico native) Susan Graham visiting the Lensic Performing Arts Center with Performance Santa Fe on March 12 and Arlo Guthrie closing out a month of Lensic events on March 31. The Santa Fe Symphony celebrates spring at the Lensic with a March 15 Beethoven Festival and ends its season with Verdi’s Requiem in May. Santa Fe Pro Musica puts music-lovers into an Easter mood with the annual Baroque Holy Week concerts on April 2-4 in the evocative Loretto Chapel, home of the mesmerizing staircase that draws Instagrammers and photo fanatics by the tens of thousands.

Enjoying an evening of glorious music at the Loretto Chapel is the way to capture all the beauty of Santa Fe. (Photo Credit: Loretto Chapel)

Enjoying an evening of glorious music at the Loretto Chapel is the way to capture all the beauty of Santa Fe. (Photo Credit: Loretto Chapel)

Santa Fe’s musical landscape is truly global. Case in point: The March performance of contemporary Hawaiian music by HAPA on March 29 at the Lensic. The Taiko drums set the scene for the annual Japanese Cultural Festival at the Convention Center on March 28. This year’s theme is Cherry Blossoms and it will be just about impossible to resist the flowery kimonos and unusual curios on sale.

Santa Fe’s Great Outdoors Is Calling
Temperatures are already hitting the 60s and that means outdoor weather! For those who enjoy ambling under azure skies, Passport to the Arts is an invitation to spring pleasures. From May 8-10, the Canyon Road gallery scene comes alive with Friday night openings where work by 100-plus artists is on display. The Saturday Quick Draw has talent on parade up and down the street as artists work en plein air (working onsite to fully capture the ambiance) and the Live Auction does a brisk business.

The sightseeing is utterly artistic when you have a Passport to the Arts. (Photo Credit: Visit Canyon Road)

The sightseeing is utterly artistic when you have a Passport to the Arts. (Photo Credit: Visit Canyon Road)

If you’re the outdoorsy type who prefers a more brisk experience in nature, the Outside Bike & Brew Festival offers five days of exceptional road and mountain biking with beer chasers at signature Santa Fe beer festivals. There’s no better way to earn a cold pint than burning up calories as you burn up the road on your two-wheeled steed. 2015 is the 30th anniversary of the Santa Fe Century, New Mexico’s longest-running bike event, so strong legs can make the 100-mile ride on May 17 their Bike & Brew capstone.

When the biking’s done, it’s time to have fun at Bike & Brew! (Photo Credit: Outside Bike & Brew festival)

When the biking’s done, it’s time to have fun at Bike & Brew! (Photo Credit: Outside Bike & Brew festival)

Spring Into Action For A Southwestern Adventure
Whether you’re taking a contented stroll through the flowered courtyard of the Bishop’s Garden or blazing full-throttle down the mountainside on your bike, Santa Fe has everything you need to capture the spirit of the season—and you still have time to win that five-day Santa Fe Getaway! Roundtrip airfare and car rental, signature Santa Fe hotel stays, dining and spa treatments, ballooning and river rafting… what are you waiting for?

 

 

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February Foodie Fest In Santa Fe

I have an appetite for adventure: a dining adventure that is! Locals and foodie tourists alike are wowed annually when Santa Fe Restaurant Week makes its appearance. The City Different is justly renowned for its delicious panoply of dining options, and I’ve got my list made for all eight days from February 22 – March 1. The plan? Delve into old favorites and add new discoveries to my dining routine. If you’ve got a craving to satisfy, prix fixes dinners from $20 to $40 per person are the tastiest dining deals around.

Santa Fe Specializes In The Art Of Dining
Sunday is my museum-hopping day. With a new exhibition to savor at the O’Keeffe Museum, I’m going to follow an afternoon at the museum with a digestif and dinner right next door at Georgia. I confess to feeling envious every time someone I know raves about a meal there, so my eight-day week begins with discovering the delectable secrets hidden in this historic building.

Reviewers rave about Georgia’s flare with fish. (Photo Credit: R.B. on Yelp)

Reviewers rave about Georgia’s flare with fish. (Photo Credit: R.B. on Yelp)

When I leave my desk on Monday, I’m not in the mood for cooking, but my other half is definitely in the mood for a meal. Dinner for Two to the rescue! This cozy spot is a Wine Spectator Award of Excellence recipient for ten years running and a Santa Fe favorite year-round. Their specials for Restaurant Week include El Rito, NM lamb chops–perfect for pairing with a glass of wine and a happy hubby.

Take A Trip Around Santa Fe’s Culinary World
T stands for Tuesday and for tapas. Taberna or La Boca, take your choice—one chef with two great spots equals terrific small plates and a signature wine list that includes memorable Spanish sherries. Both restaurants have an intimate yet lively atmosphere and each features a four-course Restaurant Week special. When I see jamón serrano and blood orange aioli on the menu, I know the meal will be muy sabroso.

Take a table at Taberna and your dining future is rosy.

Take a table at Taberna and your dining future is rosy.

I’ve had my eye on Bouche Bistro for longer than I care to admit. I am ever so grateful for the opportunity to satisfy my desire to share a bon appetit with my BFF and start a midweek dinner sipping French Onion soup or scarfing down escargot. She has celebrated her anniversary at Bouche ever since it opened, so I know she’ll steer me to the right choice of entrée. And she’s generous about sharing dessert!

What could be more a delicious finale than Profiteroles au Chocolat? (Photo Credit: Bouche Bistro)

What could be more a delicious finale than Profiteroles au Chocolat?
(Photo Credit: Bouche Bistro)

As long as I’m taking a culinary tour, following Spain and France with a visit to Italy is a must. Every family has its comfort food and when we’re not in the mood for New Mexican, we often opt for pasta. By Thursday, I look forward to the comfort of a well-sauced plate at Pranzo Italian Grill to make it through to Friday. I will concede, however, that the pork schnitzel sounds awfully tempting.

When 5:00 rolls around on Friday, find me heading east—the Far East—to Shohko. I was raised in a fish-on-Friday household and old habits are hard to break, but Mom never made sashimi! Shohko has set the standard for authentic Japanese dining since 1975 and I’ve made many a pilgrimage to this temple of subtle tastes. I never, never tire of Shohko’s seaweed salad and green tea ice cream tempura. Well, Mom never made that either!

There is plenty to love about the food artistry at Shohko. (Photo Credit: Shohko Café)

There is plenty to love about the food artistry at Shohko. (Photo Credit: Shohko Café)

Weekends Mean Dining Wonderfully
A woman’s work is never done, and Saturdays are always full of errands and shopping. Not that I mind, since I Santa Fe boasts plenty of fascinating shopping beyond groceries. I’m ending brown bag duties on the southside of town, so I told my honey to meet me at The Ranch House. We’ve been looking for an excuse to park our buggy there and the prix fixe has five hearty entrees to entice a hungry man.

Our Restaurant Week is ending with elegance when we celebrate Sunday dinner at The Compound. This beloved restaurant is housed in what is arguably the loveliest historic dining room in Santa Fe—and the cuisine matches the ambiance to perfection. I’ll wrap up the evening with a memorably sweet finish: maybe the bittersweet chocolate torte or a prickly pear mousse.

A taste of chocolate torte at the Compound is a sweet finish to Santa Fe Restaurant Week. (Photo Credit: The Compound)

A taste of chocolate torte at the Compound is a sweet finish to Santa Fe Restaurant Week. (Photo Credit: The Compound)

Speaking of sweet treats, I’ll toss in a pitch for weekend lunch at Sweet Lily Bakery. Even if you just stop in for cookies, rest assured that your gluten-free pals can have dessert too!

Santa Fe Restaurant Week Is Rich In Flavor—And Savings
By all means, don’t limit yourself to my suggestions. Your menu meanderings can include any of the 52 dining establishments on the list. That’s up to you, but no matter how you slice it, I promise you’ll be eating the best of Santa Fe at the best prices of the year.

 

 

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