Tag Archives: Sante Fe

Restaurant Martin, Bandolier National Monument, Rancho de Chimayo, Hand Arts, — sante Fe and road to Taos

Mayan Chocolate Bar  (before)

Mayan Chocolate Bar (before)

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.image

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.

Truchas, N.M.

Truchas, N.M.

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.

 

Mayan chocolate bar (after)

Mayan chocolate bar (after)

 

 

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Turquoise Trail, Vinaigrette, Shake Foundation, El Rey Inn — Albuquerque, Madrid, Sante Fe

Salads at Vinegarette

Salads at Vinaigrette

After a short but bumpy flight from Phoenix, wedged in a middle seat between two big guys in the very last row of the plane (Ahhh Southwest), we arrived almost on time at the Albuquerque airport where our hospitable brother in law Wellington picked us up in this big red truck (a work vehicle) and drove us to his adobe style house in the southeast part of town. We had a nice family dinner prepared by my sister in law Leah, visited my mother in law who lives in a residential home that house five elderly people (a far better option than the way more institutional feeling nursing home she left in Kansas, and left this morning for sante Fe along the scenic Turquoise Trail, a two lane road though the mountains. True to form, I bought something in the small town of Madrid, although not a rug because our favorite rug shop (Seppanen & Daughters Fine Textiles) wasn’t open.  I bought a flowy sweater at a little shop lining a dusty side street (most of the shops are in worn houses lining the road) and we had an excellent ice coffee at a hippie dippie place called Java Junction (note to self: coffee ice cubes!).

On the outskirts of sante fe, we checked into our usual place, a well preserved (and updated) 1930’s roadside motel, the el rye inn, which I first learned about from my mom in the 1980’s (thanks Mom xox). We had a really nice lunch at Vinaigrette in an unmarked adobe building just south of town that specializes in very fresh salad greens and interesting combos (I had a pear, blue cheese, walnuts , bacon pieces salad in a balsamic, yes, vinegrette…note to self: poach pears in balsamic vinegar; Dirck had the lightest most creative version of a taco salad I’ve ever seen/tasted). We moved onto the Plaza area and finally found a free parking spot (non metered, along a little park by Marcy street and the radio tower.) we window shopped a bit along the plaza and canyon road (dropping in at the Ventana Gallery for old times sake (where we saw $30,000 painting with sold stickers beside them). The southwest adobe architecture is still charming but the shops don’t interest me much so we just wandered. Perfect weather. Sunny, 70s, light breeze.  The railyard district nearby seems to be the more emerging place to be (it’s much more

Shopping in Madrid, New Mexico

Shopping in Madrid, New Mexico

gentrified than when we last visited 13 years ago and went to the great farmers market which, alas, is on Tuesdays and Saturdays …note to self: return on a Tuesday or saturday.)

We stopped for some ice tea and ginger lemonade at Shake Foundation, a hip fast food place made of sheet metal and glass with two takeout windows and what looks like great food (green chili burgers, lamb burgers, salt caramel ice cream, pistachio milk shakes…lunch tomorrow!)

 

 

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