Monday, June 9, 2008

Santa Fe!

I am having so much fun in Santa Fe. My parents and I drove up here on Saturday. We arrived right about 3:00pm after an 11 hour drive. We are staying at the Sky Island Casitas. When we got here we were so taken by the fantastic casita that we were going to stay in for a week. We walked all through the casita and ended up on the upper level balcony, however, we also ended up locking ourselves out up there. In the end, my dad ended up scaling a wall to free us, has been quite an adventure! The view is absolutely amazing!

This is the balcony we managed to lock ourselves out on but, with a view like we have here, how could you even care?
The view is even more spectacular at night. The clouds are so light and fluffy and the colors of the sunset are unbelievable.

We have a great little patio, where we plan to have many a party on the patio.

On Sunday we had brunch at The Chocolate Maven. I saw this on Giada's Weekend Getaways and had to go! I had the great start breakfast. It is plain yogurt, their wonderful homemade granola, and fresh fruit. It was so yummy that we purchased some of their granola and then went to Trader Joe's to get the other ingredients. After breakfast we went to the Museum of International Folk Art to see the Needles and Pins Exhibit. This was a wonderful exhibit with sewing, stitching, and knitting artifacts from over 100 years ago. After that, we attended what we thought was going to be a demonstration on how to make marbleised paper, boy were we ever wrong! Now, for my disclaimer, let me say that I have nothing against those that like marbleised paper or those that even are passionate about it and collect it but...none the less it was not my cup of tea. I know "to each his own" and whatnot. I also know that I do things that others think are a bore. This lecture was on the history of the paper itself, not on the actual making of the paper, like we thought. Well dad has this talent of being able to sleep through all he is not particularly interested in. My mom is totally aware of this and told me " don't you let him snore". I was sitting next to him so I had the privilege and responsibility of keeping him from embarrassing us. Let me tell you, I was doing and excellent job...I really was but....the whole endless talk of paper was sucking me in to this deep abyss of nothingness and I was overcome with boredom. It was like I was almost in a trance and then...the most horrid yet awfully hilarious thing happened....right when the lecturer took a pause in his speech, father managed to drum up the loudest snore you have ever heard. It echoed throughout the auditorium. It was so loud I myself cannot even imitate it. It was one of those snores that was so loud it woke himself up to the point he was not tired anymore. It took all that I had in me not to DIE laughing. I tried not to look at my dad because I knew that he would have started laughing too, not to mention my mother! I honestly though that she would be mortified but she thought it was funny too. So, I guess we all struggled throughout the last 20 minutes not to bust out laughing and make a mockery of the whole event. So, needless to say, this vacation has been rather entertaining from the very minute we got to Santa Fe.

This is an incredible sculpture that is located in the Museum atrium.

Today, Monday, we attended the Santa Fe School of Cooking Culture Tour (the picture to the left is the cooking school classroom). It was fantastic. We Started out at the Cooking School and the Director of Culinary Arts, Rocky Durham, was our tour guide. They prepared us green and red chile enchiladas to taste, they were wonderful and we all received a copy of the recipe. I will certainly be cooking this when I get back to Texas.

We then walked to Los Mayas Mexican Restaurant where we had chips, salsa, a margarita, and the most wonderful stuffed poblano pepper I have ever tasted. It is called "Chiles en Nogada", meaning chiles in walnut sauce. It was stuffed with pork, plantains, and a number of things I cannot remember. The walnut sauce was wonderful, it was almost like dessert, just melted in your mouth. The owner Fernando even played a song for us on his guitar. It was fabulous.

After that we walked over to The Institute of American Indian Arts where Walter Whitewater served us Pinon Chile Beans. He talked of the Navajo culture and how the men do not cook, however, he prepared the most wonderful dish. The flavor of the beans were so savory. He even sang us a beautiful song. I was absolutely amazing!

After we ate our chile beans, we walked over to La Boca (Giada went there too on her weekend getaway) and met Chef James Campbell Caruso. We ate tapas and drank wine in the most intimate atmosphere. The tapas were wonderful! I think I may be able to convince my parents to go back for a little happy hour with wine and tapas, can't beat that after an afternoon of shopping.

Our last stop was the Coyote Cafe where we met Chef Eric DiStefano. I have to admit, this was my favorite stop (that is me, in heaven, at the Coyote Cafe. Our tour guide and chef extraordinaire, Rocky, is chatting some people up behind me). Chef Eric served us crab cakes....I thought that was it but then he brought out spare ribs! I was in heaven. The food was absolutely wonderful, not to mention he also served us white wine to go with our crab cakes and then red wine for the ribs. It was the most amazing afternoon. We met many really neat people, learned the history of Santa Fe cooking, and ate so much food we needed a wheelchair to carry us out! If you are ever in Santa Fe, this cooking tour is an absolute must. You will have the best time imaginable!

My dad played golf while my mom and I went on the tour. After the tour was over, we met my dad at the La Fonda Bell Tower for a drink. Then, off to the Pink Adobe we went for dinner and more drinks.

The fun will not end here! I have 4 more days to go!


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