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If at ALL possible make it the last weekend (of September) for the Wine & Chile Fiesta. Stunning. Gobs of wines and spectacular wine dinners. The Main event on Saturday is the best $75 you'll ever spend.

We really like Inn of the Anasazi,Inn at Bishops Lodge, Pauls, and the Old House. For New Mexican I'd do Tortilla Flats (out Cerrillos Rd) or Tomasitas.

I just moved from there so I'd hope I come up with a lttle more with some time to think about it. Or sober up. Razz

funny wine quip goes here.
For upscale dining popular choices would include Geronimo's, Santacafe, Bistro 315, and the Old House - I believe Martin Rios is the chef there - I'm sure you can find numerous reviews.

I am personally not too fond of La Casa Sena or the Compound, but that's me. They are popular choices.

Inn of the Anasazi is one of my favorite restaurants as well as the Old House, as mentioned above. Pauls is wonderful but not super fancy. Same with Cafe Pasqual's. The great thing is you can walk by all these and check out the menu's as you stroll downtown - except for Geronimo's on Canyon Rd.

Also a lot of people like Vanessie's but I prefer it for after dinner drinks since they have a really nice piano bar.

If you have any place in mind let me know - if I haven't eaten there I probably have at least heard about it.

funny wine quip goes here.
I'm a new forumite but living in SF, I actually have some good info to contribute. I love to eat out and started in Santa Fe in the restaurant biz so I've always kept a pretty good pulse on what's going on. I too recently ate at the Anasazi and wasn't as excited as I used to be. They've changed there chef recently I believe but it is a great place to go for a cocktail (go to the back "library"). I agree with w4e, the Compound and La Casa Sena are not that great. As far as where I'd go - Tulips!!! That's my new fave. Wonderfully prepared food and the best pate` I've ever put in my mouth. Also worth checking out is Rociada, a lovely French restaurant with an awesome list, a lovely patio and an expensive menu. One other upscale is Geronimo. I recently had an unbelievable experience at a winemaker dinner at Santacafe with Luna Vineyards. Wow! For something a little scaled back check out Cafe Pasqual's and Mu Du Noodles. Cafe Pink or again, Pasqual's for breakfast and you'll have a culinary vacation that you will not forget! And for god's sake be here at Wine and Chile Fiesta!!! Enjoy!

[This message was edited by vinohound on Oct 07, 2003 at 02:57 AM.]
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I haven't been through in 4-5 years, but one of my favorite places is Maria's New Mexican Kitchen, just out of downtown. Maybe some of the locals know if it's still going? It's a casual place, with authentic Northern New Mexican food, and the largest tequila menu I've ever seen (It's 8-10 pages). Not a wine place, but I love it.

It's the closest thing to mis tias cooking I've found outside of the mountains.


"Tasting? That means nothing!...How does a wine DRINK....that's the all-important thing" Paul Masson

you definitely hit it right. maria's is still around and still has that monster tequila list. grossie, if your looking for good northern new mexican food then this is it. i can hold my liquor but at maria's there should be a two margarita limit imposed. !Cuidado!

grossie, one other thing to keep in mind is it would be a good idea to have reservations for some restaurants lined up in advance. september can get a little nutty around here.
Go to Maria's for New Mexican food the locals love. They can't be wrong. For the best guacamole head north to Gabriel's where they make it table-side. You can't get fresher than that! For classic dining head to Rociada, we were just there over 4th of July weekend and had a wonderful meal. Their wine list is impressive too. The table next to us went thru two Bordeaux that cost an average of $800 each! Santa Fe is a foodie's delight. Just enjoy!!!
OK. I've not made all the rounds in Santa Fe; however, I have yet to find any place that can match the red chili of Tomasita's or Diego's. We talk on this forum about WINE AND FOOD pairings; however, Santa Fe Chili is unique and when I eat there, my mind is on CHILI AND FOOD pairings. It is a vague recollection that I have from an issue from several years ago from Conde Naste Traveller that some French gastronomical society had recognized Santa Fe cuisine as the only gourmet food indigenous to the United States. It's the chili that made it that. Don't get caught up in trying to have an expensive meal, a la wine and food pairing, in Santa Fe when you can have a "Christmas tree" burrito at Tomasitas or Diego's. Have a Corona, a Negra Modelo or another beer of your choice. A Christmas tree is where on one-half they pour red chili, and on the other half, green chili. And if you've got the cajones (no wimps need try this), go to what was an outward appearing hole in the wall restaurant on Cerrillos Road, called "Horseman's Haven". It used to be in an old Texaco station but I believe they're building a new building next to the original location. They really do serve four alarm green chili there but to die for (or die trying to eat). Huevos Rancheros with green chili or a green chili cheeseburger there will be unbelievably good and unbelievably hot. And, get this, when we talk about "single vineyard bottlings" of wine, Horseman's Haven can talk about single vineyard chilis. They have their own private plot (or used to) of chilis of a special type planted in a unique location, as I recall from the proprietor from a visit years ago. I believe it does impart the unique qualities to their green chili that I've not detected in any other chili in my many food trips to Santa Fe. If you have acid reflux, can't stand hot food, stay away from Horseman's Haven. And, you won't find a wine menu there, that's for sure! For the best breakfast burritos in town, try Tia Maria's, just off the square across from an old theatre. Choose her green chili for the breakfast burritos.

[This message was edited by DHGOYINS on Aug 28, 2003 at 10:26 AM.]

[This message was edited by DHGOYINS on Aug 28, 2003 at 10:27 AM.]
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Funny that the French would call it indigenous. Most natives would take that as an insult, they're "Spanish". Big Grin So don't ask for "who has good Mexican food" It's "Spanish" or "New Mexican" food. They get picky about that stuff Wink

Off course I tease pops all the time that he's really just a Mexican Hillbilly.


"Tasting? That means nothing!...How does a wine DRINK....that's the all-important thing" Paul Masson
What do the French know, any way? But, I'm giving the French a rest and am no longer bashing them, especially since this Friday night I will enjoy the personal gift of a bottle of wine from a Frenchman! Wink Even then, though, the Pueblo Indians were occupying the Taos pueblo a good 500 years before ol' Columbus and the conquistadors got to the Americas. And, they've occupied that pueblo continuously for over 1000 years, the oldest continuously occupied city in the United States.
Ok, we're back!!

Here's the report:


Hacienda at the Hotel Santa Fe- excellent room, very attentive service. Not the best place I've ever stayed at, but definitely very nice, a do-again. The drawback is location, and they have very fast accomodating shuttle service to make up for this.


The Old House- excellent meal, excellent service, nice wine list that wasn't particularly overpriced. The markups were usually less than 100% for those that I knew, and the service of wine was good. The glasses were Spiegelau, and they brought a decanter without missing a step when I asked for it.

Santacafe- What a NIGHTMARE!!!! Same price as Old house for food. The staff was so poorly trained and so bad at meeting our needs it's embarassing for them. I will be posting this in Madder than Hell, but in a nutshell- overpriced, uninspired, and amateurish. To boot, the wine list was a joke! I have never seen prices like this- 02 Marquis Phillips Cab (not S2)- $48!!!! Can you believe $48! I had a glass of 01 Castle Rock Napa Pinot with my fish, it was $9 (the whole bottle is worth $9.50) Of course, the glass was dirty (soapy smell/taste). Anyway, for anyone who's thinking about a trip to Santa Fe- don't eat at Santacafe.

Otherwise the trip was great- Pasqual's for breakfast (twice) is the best, lovely town, nice people.

Flower power my ass.
Wow ! I'm stunned by your experience at SantaCafe; I've only had excellent food and good experiences there. I live in Santa Fe and eat out often at many places.

My single regular complaint in Santa Fe has to do with wine pricing so I know how you feel about that (fwiw, corkage in New Mexico is not legal). In fact, it is specifically wine pricing that usually keeps me away from Geronimo. Someone else in the party usually has to "insist". Their food is excellent.

I've taken the liberty of copying your thoughts about SantaCafe and e-mailing them to one of the two owners this morning..
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Bob- I will post more specifics about my experience when I have a chance, hopefully tonight.

Please feel free to forward this to an owner of the restaurant. I can tell you that there was a higher-up on premises that night, I don't know if she's an owner or not, but she was definitely running the place. I suspect that many of the things that annoyed me are seen by her but not noticed since they're running a busy establishment. I'll post more later.

Flower power my ass.

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