April 9, 2014 at 11:10 AM

Santa Fe’s Spring Cuisine

Joe's Burger Week, A Taste of Italy, new life for a Harvey House & more

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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Joe's Burger Week

If you're a burger fanatic, then you're in luck. Joe's Diner is running Joe's 2nd Annual Burger Week, and the menu is insane. First off, the Bourbon Chutney Beer Burger, made with locally grown, grass-fed beef—a thick, juicy slab of beef topped with a chutney bursting with flavor as well as tomato and lettuce. Then there's the Hawaiian Beef Burger, topped with thick round of pineapple, melted cheese and tomato and lettuce. The Triple Beer Burger is a decadent combo of beef, bacon and blue cheese, and the Pizza Beef Burger is topped with mozzarella cheese and tomato sauce. And if thats not enough, the Greek Lamb Burger featuresfresh ground New Mexico lamb topped with Tucumcari feta, chopped kalamata olives and served with tzatziki. There's more, including a Trifolati Mushroom Burger for vegetarians and a Salmon Burger as well as a Green Chile Cheese Buffalo Burger.

Joe's Burger Week runs through April 13, so hurry on over. Burgers are discounted and served with wine and beer specials as well as artisanal hard cider from Santa Fe Cider Works. Click here for more details.

Las Vegas Harvey House Gets New Life

It's official—La Castaneda in Las Vegas, N.M., a famous, former Harvey House Hotel, has been bought by the same couple behind the impressive transformation of La Posada, another Harvey House in Winslow, Arizona. This is great news for travelers, history buffs and foodies, as La Posada's Turquoise Room in Arizona serves excellent regional contemporary Southwestern cuisine, with an occasional tribute to the heyday of the Fred Harvey Company, and we can only assume that La Castaneda will do the same.

The Turquoise Room's menu includes such dishes as Corn Black Bean Soup; Pikki Bread with Hummus; Sweet Corn-Stuffed Squash Blossoms with Tomatilla Salsa; Green Chile Lam Tamale; Tuna in Lobster Sauce with Greens and more. The chef, John Sharpe, was nominated for a James Beard award in 2011 and the restaurant was ranked as one of the top three in the U.S. On Conde Nast's Gold List.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, La Castenada is the spot where Teddy Roosevelt and the Rough Riders held their first reunion for the Spanish-American War in 1899. In its modern-day incarnation, La Castaneda will put Las Vegas on the map as an international tourist destination. The new owners are reportedly in talks to purchase the other historic lodging in Las Vegas, the Plaza Hotel, known as “the Belle of the Southwest.” Can't wait to see the restored La Castaneda in all its glory!

A Taste of Italy

If you love the foods of Italy, why not come out for A Taste of Italy, a five-course Italian feast prepped by the Santa Fe Community College's Culinary Arts students on Wednesday, April 23 at 6 p.m. in thethe college's Jemez Rooms. The event is a fundraiser to help send the college's culinary students to Italy this spring.

The menu features foods from the region the students will visit, including sous-vide octopus and mussels on the half shell, olive tapenade on bruschetta and prosciutto and melon from Italy's Puglia-Otranto region. The feast also includes ravioli di Zucca with sage brown butter from Pompeii and Rome; Chicken Saltimboca and grilled asparagus marinated in olive oil, lemon and garlic from northern Italy; and platters of tiramisu and assorted Italian cookies from different areas in Italy, The event includes wine and sparkling wine as well. To order tickets, contact SFCC Foundation’s Kelly Smith at kelly.smith@sfcc.edu or 428-1855.

Tecolote Needs New Location

Sadly, Tecolote Cafe, one of  Santa Fe's popular breakfast spots,is being evicted from its Cerrillos Road location, where it's been a fixture since 1980. Reportedly, the landlord decided to evict owner Katie Adkins, daughter of the founding owners Bill and Alice Jennison, after The Albuquerque Journal ran an article about the restaurant locating to Santa Fe's Luna District, further up Cerrillos Road from the restaurant's current location. Adkins said she is searching for a new spot for Tecolote and hopes to find one soon.

Tecolote will close (temporarily) after its final day of business on Easter Sunday, April 20. So if you're fan of the restaurant and its motto—“Great Breakfast – No Toast”—be sure to stop by before then for Atole Piñon Pancakes (my favorite) Huevos Yucatanos, the famous pastry/bread basket and more. But don't despair, Tecolote will be back. It's just that no one knows where or when.

Bike & Brew

Mark your calendars now for the Outside Bike & Brew Festival, three days of bikes, beer & beyond, including beer dinners at some of Santa Fe's hottest restaurants.

The event takes place May 15-18 at various venues around town and features an Odell Beer Dinner at Dr. Field Goods on Thursday; a Patio Party at the Blue Corn Cafe Downtown on Friday; a North Coast Beer Dinner at the Old House on Saturday ; a Hangover Brunch at Coyote Cafe featuring Lagunitas beer and a Cowgirl Brunch with music by Joe West and the Santa Fe Revue, both on Sunday. The festival also includes art, music, film, bike-in movies, sponsored bowling and more.

Bike & Brew's full schedule includes a Duel Waffle Rid, bike path/road ride that begins at REI on Friday at 10 a.m. At REI in the Railyard and ends at Duel Brewing Company, where riders will dine on traditional Belgian waffles with Duel Syrup and a signature Duel draft. There's also a showcase of Colorado and New Mexico craft beers and  custom built bikes from across the country, which opens at 5 p.m. on Friday at the Santa Fe Farmers' Market. Participating breweries include Oskar Blues, Santa Fe, Second St., New Belgium, La Cumbre, Duel Brewing, Blue Corn, Eddyline, Avery and Odell. Friday night, the Nashville band Leagues takes the stage in the Railyard.  On Saturday, explore the Santa Fe Chocolate Trail on a tour that begins at REI in the Railyard on at 10 a.m. 

Bike & Brew winds up on Sunday at 5 p.m. with a grand re-opening party for Marble Brewery in the Luna District. Enjoy food truck food, craft beer and live music with Alex Maryol and Mississippi Hill Country Blues musician Cedric Burnside, grandson of the late RL Burnside. For more info, click here.

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