Santa Fe tidbits: dining, lodging, shopping, music and more….

Summer is still going strong in Santa Fe. Here are some things to add to your calendar.

Dining news:

There’s a new vegetarian restaurant in town. The Community Table Café is located at the Design Center, home to three other restaurants: Cleopatra Café serving Middle Eastern food, Yin Yang who’s been dishing up Chinese food for years and Pizza Centro are all serving up food here. It’s a mini food court with local eateries; no national chains here. The Community Table’s menu is seasonal offering traditional dishes from around the world with an emphasis on Mediterranean cuisine. They serve lunch Monday through Friday. Sounds like a labor of love for owners Christopher and Reingard Kolon. And speaking of love; their daily “Plate of Love” comes with a “pay what you can” price tag. These folks are committed to feeding the hungry and giving back to the community. That gets my vote! The Design Center is at 418 Cerrillos Rd. You can get the daily menu on their Facebook page or give them a call at 505-995-0191.

Santa Fe has some great pizza. Rooftop Pizza was just named best pizza in New Mexico in the Food Network Magazine’s September issue. Congrats! Here are some of our picks for great pizza in town: Pizza Centro, Pizzeria Lino, Café Café and Pizzeria Espiritu.

Chef Sundberg

Chef David Sundberg of Blue Corn Cafe and Brewery, photo/courtesy Blue Corn Restaurant

Chef David Sundberg is working wonders at Blue Corn Café and Brewery’s south-side location. Running the kitchen in this large restaurant would be enough of a challenge for most chefs, but Sundberg has been offering some fun beer events and dinners. Hold on to your culinary hats. His next event, Tuesday, September 6rh from 6:30 to 8:30, is brilliant! East to the Brewhouse, A Journey Through the Five Tastes explores the traditional Japanese tastes, pairing each of the five courses with a carefully selected beer and sake. The creative chef says his aim is “to explore the five tastes and feel how they are affected by both the sake and the beer.” Sundberg has teamed up with Blue Corn’s brew meister, Brad Kraus and sake specialist Ayame Fukuda for this special evening. The menu got my taste buds going. The chef’s love for what he does is obvious. “I am working to combine the foods of New Mexico with the cooking techniques of Japan and vice-versa, while doing as much shopping for ingredients at the farmer’s market/locally as possible,” he writes in an email. The cost for the dinner is $40 per person. Reservations are required.

 Lodging news:

The Hotel Plaza Real has a new look and a new name. Heritage Hotels has renovated and renamed the property. It’s now the Hotel Chimayó de Santa Fe. Chimayó, northeast of Santa Fe, known for its church (famous for its reported healing miracles) and its chile, is one of the oldest towns in New Mexico. It has a rich artistic heritage, including a unique weaving technique that has been passed down through families for generations and for other traditional Hispanic arts. The mall town is a haven for artists. The hotel has tapped into these art and chile traditions. Over 70 Chimayó artists’ works can be seen throughout the hotel and their Tia’s Cocina New Mexican Restauranté has commissioned a local chile grower. Their first crop of Chimayó chiles will be on the menu this fall. If you want a truly Northern New Mexican experience, check out their Low ‘n Slow Lowrider Bar. The lowrider culture of lowering and customizing cars and showing them off on a Saturday night goes back at least to the 1940s. Española, just west of Chimayó, has been dubbed the “lowrider capital of the world”. And, if you bring your lowride to the hotel, there’s a parking spot reserved for you in front. For a unique lodging experience, check out (and into) this reconceptualized boutique hotel.

Low Rider Bar at Hotel Chimayo, photo courtesy Hotel Chimayo

Low ‘n Slow Lowrider Bar at Hotel Chimayo, photo/courtesy Hotel Chimayo

 Music and dance happenings:

The Aspen Santa Fe Ballet is celebrating its 15th season. In honor of these milestone, they’re treating Santa Fe to an encore performance of their July 2011 program. It takes place on Saturday, September 3rd at 8pm at the Lensic Performing Arts Center. The performance includes Over Glow, new ballet by Jorma Elo, Kiss Me Goodnight, a whimsical work by Spanish choreographer Cayetano and Jiri Kylian’s Stamping Ground. Tickets are available at the Lensic box office or from Tickets Santa Fe.


Aspen Santa Fe Ballet performs "Over Glow" photo/Rosalie O'Connor

The Santa Fe Pro Musica opens the 2011/2012 season (their 30th) on Saturday, September 17th at 6pm (reprised Sunday, September18th at 3pm) with Tango! This concert, as the name implies, is dedicated to the music of Argentina’s signature dance. The concert features two solo Argentinean musicians performing works of tango/jazz great Astor Piazzolla. In addition, noted pianist Dave Grusin and local guitarist Brice Dunlap will join the Santa Fe Pro Musica Chamber Orchestra to perform Grusin’s Three Latin American Dances for Violin, Cello and Piano. Tickets for the performance, a thank you to Santa Fe for 30 years of support, are $10 each. The season continues through April 2012.

Taos musician Michael Hearne holds his 2011 Big Barndance Music Festival at the Old Blinking Light in Arroyo Seco, northeast of Taos Thursday, September 8th through Saturday September 10th. Check their website for the lineup, schedule and other information.

Willie Nelson, photo courtesy Heath Productions

Willie Nelson will be at the Santa Fe Opera, photo/courtesy Heath Productions

And a reminder, Willy Nelson will be at the Santa Fe Opera on Saturday, September 17th at 7:30pm. The concert benefits the Santa Fe Watershed Association. And if that week isn’t exciting enough, blues great Buddy Guy is at the Lensic Performing Arts Center on Monday, September 19th at 7:30pm. Then, on September 24th at 7:30pm, alt-country rocker Steve Earle takes the stage at The Lensic Performing Arts Center with his band, The Dukes (and Duchesses) featuring his wife, Alison Moorer. Earle appears in the HBO series Treme, about post Katrina New Orleans.

Theater news:

It’s the tenth anniversary of 9/11, an event that changed all our lives. To commemorate the event, Santa Fe’s Warehouse 21 presents Anne Nelson’s play The Guys from September 1st through 11th. The play, based on the author’s experiences immediately after the devastating attack on the World Trade Center, is the story of the encounter between a journalist and a New York City Firefighter. The local production, directed by Mona Malec, and featuring Karen Leigh and Ironweed Production’ Artistic Director, Scott Harrison is a benefit for Warehouse 21. Performances are Thursdays and Fridays at 7:30pm, and Saturdays and Sundays at 4pm. Tickets are $12 and $10 for students and seniors. If you’re strapped for cash, September 8th is “Pay- What-You-Can” night. Call (505) 603-1370 to reserve your ticket.

Scott Harrison and Karen Leigh in "The Guys" to be performed at Site 21, photo/Carrie McCarthy

Art tidbit:

photo eye Gallery’s First Wednesday’s September Salon is on Wednesday, September 7th from 6 to 9pm. The evening features photographer Edward Ranney speaking about his photographic career in Peru and the American West. Also on the program, Christopher Benson will speak about his uncle Richard Benson’s career as a photographer, photo historian and author. The painter, gallery owner and custom book maker will also talk about his publishing company, The Fisher Press. As an added attraction, Axle Contemporary, Santa Fe’s mobile gallery, will be parked outside of photo-eye with their current exhibition, I Am Animal, Vegetable, Mineral.

Shopping news:

Men don’t shop as much as women. This is not based on a scientific survey, just a personal observation. I’ve seen a lot less men’s shops than women’s in my long life. The count just went up. Santa Fe has a new men’s clothing store. Red River Mercantile at 235 Don Gaspar Avenue, has interesting twist. According to store owner Steven Traer (who owns the shop with his wife Deborah), their focus is on heritage brands. He defines these as ones that have stood the test of time. Most of the companies they stock have been around for decades; some pre-dating World War II. The Traers plan to mix the old with the new offering men clothing they can comfortably wear every day and that will stay in style for years to come.

If you have Santa Fe news you want to share with us, we’d love to hear from you.

Authors’ note: As a former hotel concierges and owners of a travel concierge and trip-planning business in Santa Fe, the writers may have been guests of business or services mentioned in posts on this site. While these experiences have not influenced us in any way, this information is provided in the spirit of full disclosure.



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One Response to “Santa Fe tidbits: dining, lodging, shopping, music and more….”

  1. Lynn (NM Enchantment)
    August 25, 2019 at 11:02 pm #

    Hey, I posted this on my site/twitter. Thanks for all the great info! Lots of good updates on things to do & see.

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