Attention foodies: Santa Fe should be your next stop. Experience a unique food culture with roots from Native American and Spanish heritage. In addition to its own culinary niche, Santa Fe is also home to Asian, Italian, Indian, and Middle Eastern flavors and dishes. Read on for everything you need to know about the Santa Fe food scene.
For over 400 years, Spanish flavors have been dancing with traditional Native American foods in Santa Fe, leading to a delicious food culture. Spanish ingredients and flavors can be noted in classic Southwestern dishes like tacos and huevos rancheros. Native American influences can be seen through what some refer to as the Three Sisters: corn, beans, and squash. These ingredients meld perfectly with traditional Spanish foods giving way to hearty soups, savory sauces, and other unique food combinations that offer a peek into Santa Fe’s history.
Although choosing a spot to eat can be hard in a place with so many options, there are definitely a few staple restaurants that you’ll want to check out. Tia Sophia’s is a must if you’re a food lover in Santa Fe; they serve classic Spanish dishes like enchiladas and tostadas and claim to be one of the first places to serve breakfast burritos back in the ’70s. For more of a fine dining experience, keep an eye out for both Coyote Cafe and Sazón. These two restaurants offer a contemporary pop using traditional Southwestern flavors that lead to things like red chile onion rings or corn truffle over mini tortillas.
With such delectable food options in Santa Fe, you’ll want to make sure you stay in an area that works best for you and the kinds of culinary experiences you want to have. Because there’s a concentration of restaurants near the Santa Fe Historic District, staying close by would be your best bet at sampling the diverse flavors that the city has to offer. Look into different Santa Fe hotels through services like Hotel Planner to stay near as many different palates as possible. Be sure to consider the fact that Santa Fe is also home to just as many reputable food carts as it is restaurants, so plan to visit both.
If you’re headed to Santa Fe and want to experience the full gamut of food options, keep your eyes open for a few staple dishes; New Mexico green chile stew is definitely among them. This stew is rustic, packed with chunks of potato, pork, and of course, green chiles. Also look out for Pasole, which is strangely both an ingredient and when combined with other ingredients, is also a stew. Pasole is corn that has been boiled and soaked in lime juice, changing both the taste and texture of the corn. While in Santa Fe, you can also expect lots of Southwestern influences in dishes such as chile-smothered enchiladas, sopapillas, and carne adovada, a chile-marinated pork.
Experience the culinary intersection of Native American and Spanish foods. Whether you want to grab a bite on your way to your next stop or to dine in for a modern twist on classic foods, Santa Fe is the ultimate stop for any foodie.