Among the travel articles and miscellaneous stuff I brought with me from my “New Mexico file,” was a copy of a hand drawn map of places in and around Sante Fe and Taos. And on the map, someone had written “rancho de chimayo” and “hand arts” (outside the tiny town of Truchas). I still don’t know whose handwriting it is but I am grateful. Rancho de Chimayo turned out to be a perfect place to eat after climbing in and out of the cliff dwellings at Bandolier National Monument. It’s an old ranch with pretty old dining rooms and a sunny patio where we had some traditional northern New Mexico food (and an excellent frozen prickly pear lemonade.) I am pretty sure the three guys sitting near us were talking movie deals.
Hand Arts turned out to be a contemporary art gallery in a gloriously bucolic setting…a White House on the edge of the dirt road winding through the little town of Truchas (on the super scenic high road to Taos) with a sculpture garden in a bright green meadow and the blue, purple, brown mountains in the distance. We ended up buying ourselves a 25th anniversary gift.
As an extra bonus, the gallery owner gave us an excellent route home, north to Pelicoris (sp?) and then west to Dixon. Gorgeous drive.
Last night’s dinner at restaurant Martin was fantastic. I had yellowfin tuna with little sides dotting the plate – strands of artichokes, grilled onions, a thin orange edible paper that was once sweet potatoes; Dirck had a similar deconstructed version of short ribs. Dessert was bizarre but delicious a “Mayan chocolate bar” that had some sort of chocolate mousse atop a thin layer of chocolate, with dark moist cake on either end, a scoop of popcorn flavored ice cream (not as bad as that sounds) and a white straw apparently made out of spun sugar (we think.) We were each given a fork and a small spatula to use to split it. So I didn’t have to lick the plate.