MILLENNIAL'S GUIDE

Santa Fe
Food and
Drink

Colorful Brewhouse beer menu. Displaying many of the local beers and brewers.
If there is one thing that Santa Fe trumps all other similar mountain towns, it’s our food. Santa Fe’s food scene is simply outstanding. For a town with as small a population as Santa Fe, particularly in a heavily rural state, Santa Fe is one of the original foodie destinations and continues to distinguish its own style, flavors, colors, and experiences.

Honestly, when inviting guests to visit you will likely hear, “Oh, I can’t wait to get enchiladas at La Choza!” Food and quality drink is an important part of the Santa Fe identity.
A detail of a plate of New Mexican food featuring red and green chile, pinto beans, and posole.

Santa Fe Foods

This is just the tip of the iceberg, but here are some Santa Fe and New Mexico ‘isms worth knowing and enjoying (some events were paused due to the Covid-19 pandemic and may have changed.)

:

  • Sopapilla: New Mexico’s answer to the donut. This is a sweet, fried bread served typically after a meal. Dip in honey for a sweet ending to your fiery dish.
  • Tortilla Burger: Everyone loves a burger, but how about instead of a bun it gets wrapped in a tortilla and smothered in chile? Your mouth should be watering now.
  • Christmas: While green chile is good on just about everything, red chile really adds some depth to dishes. Order Christmas style and get the best of both worlds.
  • Lava Lamp: This is a special from Coyote Cantina where they pour a frozen margarita into a Mexican lager. The margarita suspends itself (hence the name) and you get a limey, cold, refreshing drink.

A few notable Santa Fe foodie events:

  • Taco Wars: Held at the Drury Hotel in June, the Taco Wars is an event where the best kitchens in town try their hand at new and exciting tacos. Likewise, local distilleries offer their take on specialty tequilas and margaritas.
  • Santa Fe Restaurant Week: During the waning days of winter, restaurants around town host a series of specialty meals, often multiple-course, to celebrate their diverse menus 
A cafe latté from Iconic Coffee.

Coffee Cafes and Hangouts

Santa Fe caught the coffee bug and now hosts a handful of excellent roasters and coffee houses worthy of the recovering Seattleite. Here are a few to get you started:

  • Iconik: With a great atmosphere matched by excellent coffee, Iconik roasts their own with a good menu and spaces suitable for your bloglife.
  • Betterday Coffee Shop: Located next to the Co-op, Betterday offers Stumptown beans from PDX and a hip atmosphere.
  • Tea House: Good food, excellent outdoor and cozy indoor space, the Tea House on Canyon Road is a perennial favorite meeting spot.
  • Ohori’s: One of the original coffee roasters in town, Ohori’s has multiple locations, including one at the Luna center.
  • 35° North: Excellent coffee, spacious seating, and right on the Plaza. Need we say more?
  • Downtown Subscription: Also a local favorite, DS has racks full of magazines for purchase to go along with that killer coffee.
A woman holds a margarita.

Santa Fe Bars and Beer

Santa Fe was not left behind in the Great Craft Beer rush of the last two decades and we have an existing craft beer blog post here for those of you looking for the frothy ones.

Aside from our local craft beer scene, we have some really great bars that are worth noting, as well as the Margarita Trail—a formally recognized list of all the great margaritas in Santa Fe. Here’s a quick list of some of our favorites:

  • Fire and Hops: A constantly rotating draft beer list and amazing pub fare.
  • Coyote Cantina: Patio bar with Mexican vacation feel and excellent cocktails.
  • Tesuque Village Market: Old-school cool, located in Tesuque with awesome margs and food.
  • Altar Spirits: new and unusual cocktails made from their own distilled spirits and tasty spins on classics. Located next to the Violet Crown and Second Street right down here in the Railyard. 
  • El Farol: Classic Santa Fe on Canyon Road with a dance floor and salsa music.
  • Cowgirl: Proper BBQ, good beer and cocktail list, live music, and pool tables.
  • Radish and Rye: Upscale food with mind-blowing bourbon selections.
  • Drury Patio: Easily the best views in town atop the Drury Hotel. Perfect for summer evenings.
  • Loyal Hound: Great beer selection, solid food, casual atmosphere in midtown