June 5, 2013 at 1:54 PM

Notes from the Field

Kaune's get a new look, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner and a Food Truck Throwdown

By Lynn Cline

Gourmet Girl

Lynn Cline is a former food editor and the author of two books – Romantic Days and Nights in Santa Fe and Literary Pilgrims: The Santa Fe and Taos Writers' Colonies, 1915-1950. She also loves to cook, when not dining out.

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A New Look for Kaune's

Santa Fe is lucky to have a locally owned, family run grocery store in the heart of downtown, which dates back 1896, when Henry Spencer Kaune established a grocery store in the city.

Kaune's Neighborhood Market has long been a fixture for foodies, offering quality meats, imported cheeses, fresh dairy, a selection of condiments from around the globe and more than 700 wines. The store is filled with grocery staples, from dairy and fresh produce to natural and organic foods and specialty items.

But recently, Kaune's took a big step into the 21st century with a full renovation that includes a new layout, handsome design accents and aisles full of innovative foods from around the world that you won't find in just any grocery store. There's also an impressive selection of imported wines, beer and sake.

The result is a European-style market that invites shoppers to explore food that is artfully presented. And everything seems to jump off the shelves at you invitingly, from Sage Bakery's fresh-baked baguettes and loaves to fig and walnut goat cheese, green chile turkey sausage, buffalo brats, honey smoked salmon, blue cheese bacon burgers and rabbit, quail and duck.

The minute you walk through the doors of the newly revamped Kaune's, you know you're in a foodie's paradise.  And foodies turned out in droves for Kaune's official Grand Opening Party last Saturday, which featured free samples of food from an array of local vendors as well as reps from national food companies, too. We tasted pesto, salsa, pad thai, sesame noodles, tamales, bizochitos, handcrafted chocolate, fresh roasted coffee and more. Chef Johnny Vee was on hand to give a food demo of smoked salmon served with a dill sauce, and KBAC DJ Honey Harris, host of The Big Show, was on hand to help celebrate as well.

Santa Fe is lucky to have a locally owned grocery store in the heart of downtown, and this is the kind of place that still offers home grocery delivery ($7 within city limits and $10 in the suburbs). Kaune's is also the kind of place where if you don't see a product that you want, you can ask them to consider carrying it, and you know they will. And it's the place where gourmet locals in the know go for the very best in fine foods.  See you at Kaune's!

Calling Santa Fe's Best Green Chile Cheeseburgers!

Do you have a favorite green chile cheeseburger in Santa Fe? (Who doesn't?) Then be sure to nominate it in the 2013 Green Chile Cheeseburger Smack Down, sponosred by the Santa Fe Convention and Visitors' Buearu. The event takes place in the Railyard on Saturday, September 7 during the Santa Fe Farmers' Market Green Chile Harvest Festival but online nominations open Saturday, June 29.  The Smack Down will feature judging for the best burger as well as a People's Choice Award.

Restaurants interested in participating should attend a briefing on Thursday, June 13 in the Nambe Room of the Santa Fe Convention Center. For more info, call Phyllis Archuleta at the CVB at 955-6214. May the best burger win!

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner

There's still time to get your tickets to one of the hottest dinner parties in town, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, held Sunday, June 23. The event features an array of dinner parties hosted by the who's who of Santa Fe who throw open their homes for sumptuous meals prepared by some of Santa Fe's finest chefs. After dinner, guests head over to the Scottish Rite Temple for a dessert competition that includes offerings from Dulce, La Casa Sena, the Santa Fe Culinary Academy, Inn at the Anasazi and La Posada. The evening is a fundraiser for the Santa Fe Community Foundation's Community Leadership Fund. Click here for more info.

Food Truck Throwdown

Mark your calendars right now for Food Truck Throwdown coming up Saturday, July 27 from 5 to 8 p.m. in Albuquerque at Marble Brewery (1111 Marble Ave. NW).

Seven popular food trucks will offer innovative beef dishes to surprise and delight you.  Celebrity judges including Nikki Stanzione, host of KASA Fox 2's "New Mexico Style", will choose winners. You can purchase microbrews from Marble Brewery and enjoy live music as you sample food and vote for the Fan Fave. This is an over 21 event.

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