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last minute Santa Fe - good new restaurants open in the last year or so?

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wishbeaune May 13, 2010 04:01 PM

Chowpersons - I find myself suddenly badk in Santa Fe for a few days, and I haven't planned ahead for meals. Can you help? I was here a year ago and found some favorites had closed - that place Stefano's(?) on Agua Fria near the Sanctuario, and Bistro 315 was closed for reno, so am looking for new possibilities in New Mexican cuisine. Will do Pasquale's as always -- they never disappoint. How is Ristra these days? I hear 315 is reopened, is it as good as before, or under new owners? Went to Epazote last night and it was trying hard, but only okay. I would try them again sometime, I think. I like their idea of concentrating on mole. (Now if only they could update the piped-in music.) People seem to like La Choza and Santacafe, so will probably do at least one of those. Other thoughts? We're in town for only a short while, so price is not a great inhibitor. Leaning toward New Southwestern cooking rather than sushi, pizza, etc. Have tried Geronimo and most of the ones that have been around for years, just looking for what's new and alive... Thanks for any/all help!

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La Choza Restaurant
905 Alarid St, Santa Fe, NM 87505

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  1. DebitNM RE: wishbeaune May 13, 2010 05:06 PM

    We really like La Choza, good food and a local vibe. Max's is new and so is Restaurant Martin, not really New Mexican food, but both are getting rave reports.

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    La Choza Restaurant
    905 Alarid St, Santa Fe, NM 87505

    Restaurant Martin
    526 Galisteo, Santa Fe, NM 87501

    Max's - Santa Fe
    403 1/2 S. Guadalupe, Santa Fe, NM 87501

    2 Replies
    1. re: DebitNM
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      wishbeaune RE: DebitNM May 19, 2010 04:53 PM

      Thanks, DebitNM! We didn't make it to any of the three, unf., but I will keep them in mind for the next time! So nice to be in the desert for awhile again.

      1. re: wishbeaune
        DebitNM RE: wishbeaune May 19, 2010 07:16 PM

        so where DID you eat??

    2. c
      cyssf RE: wishbeaune Mar 27, 2011 05:23 PM

      We absolutely loved Epazote and felt it was one of the best meals we've ever had (and we have traveled all over the world including Oaxaca). Chef Olea, although born in Mexico City, draws upon Oaxacan and Pueblan traditions and his moles are stupendous. They send out a sampler of three moles and the entrees to be served with them that night. You can taste the moles and base your order on that tasting. He created the Santa Fe mole in honor of Santa Fe's 400th birthday - apricots, white chocolate, red chimaya chiles and pecans. Absolutely spectacular with the grilled lamb chops. Tom had the pumpkin seed mole on halibut which was also excellent. His cream of poblano soup was also inventive and delicious. We had the cuitlachoche (corn "truffle) appetizer as well. There was a live guitarist when we were there who greatly contributed to the atmosphere. Anyone who wants Tex-Mex or traditional green/red sauce food should go to the Shed etc, but if you want to experience Mexican cooking as its sophisticated elegant best, you should go to Epazote. Very good value for the money as well - complementary aperitif, two appetizers, entree, bottle of wine and complementary dessert cost us $150 for three. We use Chowhound extensively while traveling and have had some brilliant meals. We think fellow Chowhounders will find Epazote to one of those hidden gems. Not only did we have a wonderful meal but Chef Olea gave us a very informative talk on the various chiles and herbs (including dried avocado leaves) on display in the entry way, allowing us to smell the glass cannisters to appreciate the differences in the chiles.

      1 Reply
      1. re: cyssf
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        SusanB RE: cyssf Mar 28, 2011 04:45 AM

        We'll be in Santa Fe in early August - I'll keep this one in mind. Thanks.

      2. DebitNM RE: wishbeaune Mar 28, 2011 06:25 AM

        Long overdue update; 315 Restaurant & Wine Bar was wonderful. Ate there in September, sat outside and had a lovely dinner.

        We also had an really enjoyable dinner at O'Keeffe Cafe in February. Highly recommended.

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        315 Restaurant & Wine Bar
        315 Old Santa Fe Trail, Santa Fe, NM 87501

        1 Reply
        1. re: DebitNM
          DebitNM RE: DebitNM Mar 28, 2011 06:29 AM

          Link wouldn't post -

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          O'Keeffe Cafe
          217 Johnson Street, Santa Fe, NM 87501

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