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Aug 17, 2013 09:03 AM

The Bite in Santa Fe

Just a heads up to fans of Bonnie and John Eckre who used to run Bobcat Bite.

Their new place - The Bite - opened yesterday in the heart of Santa Fe; in the restaurant space attached to Garret's Desert Inn Hotel (next door to Bistro 315 and diagonally across the street from The Pink Adobe.

The space is much larger and as the hotel's restaurant they now serve breakfast, lunch and dinner, seven days a week.

In time there will be a beer and wine license and now they take credit cards, too.

Oh, and most important their nationally lauded 10 ounce Green Chile Cheeseburger is as good as ever. One can even order French Fries (ala carte) too.

They were jammed yesterday (~ 80 seats with a very nice and large patio). Bonnie and John have both always been extremely thin. The way they were working yesterday, well, I worry about them.

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  1. We had dinner there last night. My burger was amazing We also loved the cole slaw. Great waiter too. Only downside is the motel it is in is really filthy. The ladies room was gross.

    1. Have seen less than stellar comments over on the "y _ _ _" board. Service is off, long waits...

      2 Replies
      1. re: DebitNM

        Deb, I'm aware of the other comments about service problems and wait times. I've only been once (opening day) to the Santa Fe Bite and my primary concern was whether or not their iconic burger "survived the move" which I believe it did.

        A further thought ("rant" alert, and it's just my opinion)... it seems that on-line commentary has - as the net has matured - moved to either "horrible" or "wonderful" conclusions by posters. No in-between or nuanced thoughts.

        Recently, after another favorite closed (Hidden Chicken; retirement of owners), I was reading comments and was surprised at the number of negative comments.

        I went to Hidden Chicken for one menu item; their Green Chile Chicken Pot Pie. I always took it home uncooked and prepared it there... always reliably satisfying; I wish I had the recipe to make it from scratch.

        The restaurant was large and nothing fancy at all. One ordered at a counter/register and paid. If dining in, a runner brought the food; always on real plates with real silverware.

        At that, the negative comments about "service" were amazing. What service was lacking ? Beverage refills were there. Food arrived once ready.

        Always an owner on the register. No wonder they closed the doors and chose to retire.

        I'm beginning to think that we all have been too conditioned by the fast food behemoths to accept less than good (but reliable) food in a bag to be consumed mostly in one's car.

        1. re: fyfas

          Based on our one visit so far (lunchtime on Indian Market weekend, so they were slammed) I saw no indication of service problems or longer than average waits. The service staff has probably quadrupled in size, so you're not going to get as much personal attention from Bonnie and Ashleigh any more, but our server turned out to be a familiar face from Harry's who just moved over to the Bite and did a great job.

          People also need to remember that this has never been fast food. I frequently showed up to the old location precisely at opening time and always paid attention to when the first burger came out of the kitchen - it was generally at least 20-25 minutes after the first order was placed. To fyfas' point, some of the negative comments may be coming from newcomers with unrealistic expectations.

          FWIW, fyfas, I also share your thoughts on Hidden Chicken. I was semi-regular, always ordered exactly the same thing (Green Chile Brisket Melt), and can't fathom how anyone could possibly have anything negative to say about the service. There is obviously a personality type that revels in publishing vicious comments on the web (sometimes even second hand in nature, with no basis in reality) - we can only hope that most readers have enough sense to sniff those types out and ignore them.