Geronimo (update), Santa Fe, 9/15/23

entrance – 724 Canyon Rd, Santa Fe, NM 87501

We last ate at Geronimo in 2019 and as usual, had a fine meal in this 1756 adobe home built by Geronimo Lopez.  The menu doesn’t change much here but you can expect an elegant atmosphere, lowered lighting, music in the background, art on the walls, white tableclothes, valet parking and friendly professional service.  Everytime I visit I seem to get the foie gras and Elk steak so tonight I went off script and ordered differently as did my husband.  It ended up nice but not as satisfying as my usual order.  Either way, it’s still a very fine meal and one I’d recommend if you can get there. Continue reading

The Shed, Santa Fe, 9/14/23

exterior sign – 113 1/2 E Palace Ave, Santa Fe, NM 87501

The Shed is an institution in Santa Fe.  Its sister restaurant La Choza (opened in 1983) is frequented more by locals whereas The Shed is on the main Square and has been there since 1953.  There are nine rooms within and a patio on the outside.  They are known for their blue corn options and red chile as well as margaritas.  Very popular, they do take reservations for dinner and otherwise be prepared to wait.  The bare wood tables are in rooms filled with paintings, not for sale, and plants. The bar has a large selection of tequila and mescal as well as some wines.  Chips are not included in your meal but can be ordered separately.  If you get to Santa Fe you must eat here, it’s a great starting point for your journey through New Mexican food. Continue reading

Trading Post Cafe, Taos, 9/14/23

exterior – 4179 NM-68, Ranchos De Taos, NM 87557

The Trading Post Cafe was an eclectic cafe with a deli offering meats and cheeses by the pound as well as coolers selling produce and other supplies.  There were several rooms with the main one having a long bar in front of the grill area.  The aroma of cooking burgers greeted you when you walked in.  We were there to have a snack and mostly visit with some friends so we didn’t try too many things.  I gather it’s only recently opened as they did not yet have a license for beer or wine, but that is in the process.  Also when I googled it to get details it sent me to a coffee roasting site and then another linked me to an Italian restaurant.  Regardless, if you’re in Taos and looking for a little spot to eat I’d give this one a try. Continue reading

Sazón, Santa Fe, 9/13/23

exterior – 221 Shelby St, Santa Fe, NM 87501

Sazón was started by Chef Fernando Olea in 2015.  He originally was from Mexico City and incorporates the indigenous and culinary traditions of Old Mexico into his fabulous foods.  He started cooking in 1991 with a green chili cheeseburger at Bert’s Burger Bowl.   In 2022 he was the winner of James Beard Award for Best Chef in the Southwest.   The many rooms feature the work of some Mexican artists, many of which are for sale, white tablecloths and napkins, Spanish music in the background and lowered lighting.  The menu is fairly small but they also offer a Chef’s Degustation Tasting Menu at 5:00 and 7:30 if reserved in advance.  They also offer a curated tequila, mezcal and wine pairing or a large menu of wines from Mexico as well as other countries.  There is no printed menu for the tasting and some of the courses are not on the menu but I highly recommend it as a way to sample this chef’s excellent cuisine.  Olea presents a wonderful depth of flavor to his dishes as well as a healthy dose of spice and richness.  I enjoyed it immensely. Continue reading

Tomasita’s, Santa Fe, 9/13/23

exterior – 500 S Guadalupe St, Santa Fe, NM 87501

Tomasita’s serves New Mexican food in Santa Fe as well as Albuquerque.   Named for Tomasita Leyba, the original cook at the place and whose recipes are still served 40 years later.  It started as a small café on Hickox Street in 1974 when Georgia Maryol took over the dying restaurant. Together they built a customer base that outgrew the space and in 1979 it moved to the 100-year old red brick building in the Santa Fe Railyard.  Georgia’s son now owns the restaurant and opened a branch in Albuquerque in 2017.  The railyard location was a large place with rooms scattered around set with bare wooden tables and chairs and a patio.  Music was in the background, there was a large adjacent parking lot, art decorated the walls and statues were on the patio.  Chips and salsa are not included in the meal.  The service was super friendly and efficient but the food was mixed. Continue reading

Geronimo, Santa Fe, 11/1/19


Geronimo is a large place in an old building spread over several rooms.  The tables are fairly close and set with white cloths and napkins.  The lighting is lowered, music is in the background, candles are on the tables and in the old fireplaces, art and mirrors decorate the walls and bench seating is on some walls.  There is a room with a bar at the front of the place with a couple tables and bar seating, but it was quite crowded when we got there.  They offer an a la carte menu or a vegetarian tasting, that has optional wine pairings.   They also had some nightly specials.  Service was helpful, extremely friendly and well paced. Continue reading

The Compound, Santa Fe, 11/3/19


The Compound is a large old building with the sign on Canyon Road, but you have to walk/drive down a little ways.  The adobe structure is made up of several rooms with one room having a wavy plaster ceiling and another having squares of different colors.  (One of the fun features is the painted snake that runs over the waves of plaster.)  The walls hold lots of art and press coverage for this long running restaurant that opened over 50 years ago.  Chef/Owner Mark Kiffin has run the place almost 20 years and won the James Beard Best Chef in the Southwest award in 2005.  Music is in the background, the lighting is lowered and the white clothed tables are widely spaced.  Bench seating is around some of the walls which is opposite the comfortable chairs on the other side of the table.  Service was excellent with good pacing.  The menu is all a la carte. Continue reading

Cafe Pasqual, Santa Fe, 11/3/19


Cafe Pasqual is almost an institution in Santa Fe.  They don’t take reservations so be prepared to wait an hour for a table.  They have a list that you get on at the door and they call your name when it’s your turn to enter the medium sized place.  The tile walls add to the colorful interior that is decorated with lace things hanging from the ceiling and t-shirts and calendars.  There is a large communal table in the center of the downstairs and a few tables are up a couple steps at the front of the place.  At the front counter they have desserts to go but also sell many souvenirs.  Tables are of unvarnished wood, there is music in the background and the floor is wood and tile.  Tables are closely set and relatively small and set with paper napkins.  Service is efficient but it takes a while as the crowd is pretty much non-stop.  When we ate there years ago the food seemed worth the wait but now I’m not sure I’d wait again for it.  It was good, it just didn’t have the soul that some of the other New Mexican spots we visited. Continue reading

Market Steer Steakhouse, Santa Fe, 11/2/19


Market Steer Steakhouse is in the St. Francis Hotel in downtown Santa Fe.  It is a good sized room and has an additional entrance if you don’t want to cut through the hotel. The bare wood square tables are set with room to get between the large chairs and there are a couple booths along one wall.  At the end of the room is a stone wall with a large mantle and fireplace.  Windows to the street occupy 2 other sides of the room.  The floor is a wide plank wood one and the noise level was fairly high.  They had been open just over a year when we visited.  They serve all prime beef that has been age 24 days and it looked to be a success, as it was busy.  It’s interesting that 2 women run the place,  Executive Chef and co-owner if Kathleen Crook and General Manage and co-owner is Kristina Goode.   Everything is a la carte, so with your steak you can order separate sauces and all vegetables are by separate order.  Service was helpful and friendly. Continue reading

Palacio Cafe, Santa Fe, 11/2/19


Palacio Cafe is a small family run place.  Windows to the street bring in lots of light to the colorful room.  Art is on the walls and a counter is opposite the street windows for service and pass through to the kitchen.  Some tables were also out front if weather cooperates.  Music was in the background, plants were hanging from the ceiling that had wood logs crossing it – the room had a good feel.  Service was efficient, friendly and the portions generous.  The food was well seasoned, not fancy but really good. Continue reading

La Choza, Santa Fe, 11/1/19


La Choza is the sister restaurant of the ever popular The Shed, located in the old town square.  La Choza is out of town but not a bad distance and way less crowded, but plenty of people still are there.  They have their own parking lot behind the adobe building.  The dining areas take up several rooms and there is also a large bar area.  Beams of wood line the ceilings and colorful art adorns the walls.   The tables are bare wood, there are lots of windows to the outside and a large variety of tequila, margaritas and mezcales to chose from as well as draft beers.  Service is friendly, efficient and helpful.  Portions are large and the food is wonderful, with a good amount of flavor and texture in every bite. Continue reading