January 22, 2014 at 5:48 PM

Santa Fe’s Winter Cuisine Scene

"A winter feast in Santa Fe, from Souper Bowl to At the Artist's Table, Restaurant Week & 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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Santa Fe Souper Bowl XX

We now know who's going to the Superbowl this year—Denver and Seattle—and bets are already being placed on who will win. But all bets are off when it comes to Santa Fe's Souper Bowl, one of the city's most anticipated events! (Although Jambo Cafe has been the winner in consecutive recent years, so you could hedge your bet.)

The culinary competition takes place Saturday, February 1 from noon to 2:30 p.m. at the Santa Fe Community Convention Center. The even features 28 local restaurants competing for the title of Best Soup as well as a signature soup in one of four categories--savory, vegetarian, seafood, and cream. Guests sample each soup then vote for the best in each category as well as the best overall soup.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of  the Souper Bowl is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year--make sure you are part of the fun! All proceeds from the event benefit The Food Depot, Northern New Mexico's food bank, which serves 135 partner agencies in nine counties in Northern New Mexico, providing food for 500,000 meals to those in need every single month. Click here to purchase tickets.

Photo: Eric Swanson

At the Artist's Table

Looking for a great way to celebrate Valentine's Day? Make a reservation now for At the Artist's Table, a Santa Fe School of Cooking event that pairs acclaimed Santa Fe artist Susan Contreras with chef extraordinaire Michelle Roetzer, who is the lead instructor for the Santa Fe Community College's Culinary Arts Program and teaches classes at the Santa Fe School of Cooking. She has cooked for numerous notables including presidents George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton and Vicente Fox of Mexico and Al Gore.

Roetzer will personally guide guests through her Valentine's Dinner course by course, explaining how her menu was inspired by the vivid colors and signature style of Contreras' paintings. The menu includes green chile and goat cheese-stuffed chalupas and butternut squash empanadas as a starter, followed by a first course of red tortilla soup with savory pepita biscotti.The second course features chile en nogada, followed by an entree of sea bass Veracruzana with green rice and baby vegetables. For dessert, it's saffron-poached pears with salted caramel and almond cookies. Each course features wine pairings that reflect Contreras' Mexican heritage. During the dinner, both the artist and the chef with share their histories and inspiration with guests. Each guest will take home an original, limited edition work of art signed by Contreras.

The Valentine's At the Artist's Table takes place February 14 at 6 p.m. at the Santa Fe School of Cooking and benefits the Santa Fe Arts Commission, which supports the city's unique artistic and cultural heritage, and Partners in Education Foundation, which supports local teachers and students in Santa Fe public schools. Click here for more info or to make a reservation.

Santa Fe Restaurant Week

Santa Fe is renowned as one of the country's culinary capitals, but you may not have had a chance to try all of the city's acclaimed restaurants. The 4th Annual Santa Fe Restaurant Week is designed to change that, especially if price has been an obstacle.

Restaurant Week, which takes place February 23 through March 2, features nearly 50 restaurants offering discounted prix-fixe three-course dinners and two-course lunches as well as special events including classes, demos and tastings.

This is a great opportunity to enjoy fine dining at prices that please both your palate and your wallet. Restaurant Week takes place during the same week in Albuquerque and Taos as well, so you can sample food from the great chefs in those cities. More than 100 restaurants in New Mexico will participate in this year's event.

While you don't need tickets for Restaurant Week, you will need reservations as this event draws a crowd. For more info, click here.

ARTFeast

Mark your calendars now for the 17th Annual ARTfeast, one of the city's most popular winter events. The event takes place February 21 through February 23. This year, five events across the city celebrate Santa Fe’s world-class chefs and restaurants as well as  vintners, artists, galleries and unique homes. New this year is an evening Fashion Feast featuring internationally renowned designer Mondo Guerra.

ARTFeast's highlight is the Edible Art Tour, a sampler of the city's art and food during a “gaze-and-graze” event that takes place Friday, February 21 from 5 to 8 p.m. at more than 40 galleries around the city. Chefs from Santa Fe restaurants and caterers pair up with galleries to create specialties that match the art and imaginative themes created by the galleries.

ARTFeast is a fundraiser supporting ARTsmart, a nonprofit that ensures Santa Fe and New Mexico youth have the opportunity to explore, experience and engage in the visual arts, which are a critical component of every student’s education. Click here for more info.

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