Santa Fe Buzz: December 2011

by Christie Chisholm, LocalFlavor Magazine, December 2011

These days, it’s nice to celebrate the opening instead of the closing of an independent, locally owned bookstore. And when that shop also happens to be for children, well, that’s even better. The adorable Bee Hive just opened at 328 Montezuma, right in the space Cupcake Bakery used to occupy. Just in time for the holidays, the little bungalow stocks everything from picture books to young adult novels, and there are plenty of puzzles, cards and craft kits in the mix, too. So go welcome your new local bookstore to the neighborhood with some presents for the tiny people in your life. 780.8051, www.beehivekidsbooks.com

You’re likely already familiar with the gorgeous, high-end clothing and handbags offered by local designer Laura Sheppherd at her Salon de Couture. Now, for the first time, the shop is hosting a sample sale to make room for next year’s Laura Sheppherd, Pronovias and Jovani collections. Starting Dec. 2 and lasting as long as there’s inventory, dresses and gowns will be 50 percent off. Go early, and Sheppherd recommends making an appointment. Also coming out of the Salon de Couture this month is a Masha Archer Wearable Art Jewelry trunk show from Dec. 16 to 31. Shown in museums and galleries around the world, Masha’s one-of-a-kind necklaces and earrings make for a memorable gift, either for yourself or for someone special. 65 W. Marcy, 986.1444, www.laurasheppherd.com.

Don’t be fooled—you can shop with your dollars at farmers’ markets even in the middle of winter. Farmers’ markets are open in the railyard through December, every Saturday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. In addition to cold-weather crops like greenhouse tomatoes, greens, root vegetables and apples, there will still be staples like grass-fed meats, cheese, baked goods, dried foods, body care and crafts. During the holiday season, normal market rules are relaxed to open up the space to a larger array of ornaments, crafts and gifts. Also this month are Railyard Artisans Markets every Sunday through Dec. 18 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The great thing about these markets is that they provide an opportunity to meet artisans whose works are featured, from guitar makers to photographers. Lastly, there’s a Special Artisans Market Holiday Faire on Saturday, Dec. 17, from 3 to 7:30 p.m. And don’t forget that all these events include live music and food. Get your grocery and holiday shopping done and feel good about it. 1607 Paseo de Peralta. www.santafefarmersmarket.com.

While on the topic of supporting your community, this year the Santa Fe Alliance has joined a national campaign called Shift Your Shopping, aimed at inspiring people to buy local. The Alliance’s Local Guide is out, and you can pick up a copy at its office at 1404 Taos Street. To peruse a local business directory and find out more, visit www.santafealliance.com and www.shiftyourshopping.org.

Expanded burritos are always good news. In this case, it’s Knapp’s Wraps, Burritos and More that’s growing into a space in Design Center Santa Fe. Open for breakfast and lunch, Knapp’s not only makes burritos to order, it also serves up pulled pork, Southwest cheese steak, fish tacos, quiche, soup du jour, pastries, desserts and, of course, coffee. 418 Cerrillos, 570.7335.

What’s the frosty holiday season without The Nutcracker? Here, there’s no better company to watch perform it than the Aspen Santa Fe Ballet. Whether you want to dazzle your children with sugarplum fairies or feel like a kid again watching toy soldiers come to life, the cast of 60 dancers, actors and circus artists will probably deliver that cozy wintertime feeling you’ve been looking for. There are only four performances—on Saturday, Dec. 3, at 2 and 7:30 p.m. and on Sunday, Dec. 4, at 1 and 5 p.m.—so don’t wait to get tickets. While we’re talking about ASFB, here’s a little note about their new full-length piece, Botanica, hitting the stage on Tuesday, Jan. 24, at 7:30 p.m. As the spring season starts to peek around the corner, Botanica lives in the realm of flowers and plants, with a score layered in birdsongs and Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons.” Prices range from $20 to $72 and both shows are at The Lensic, Santa Fe’s Performing Arts Center. 211 W. San Francisco, 988.1234, www.lensic.org, www.aspensantafeballet.com.

Le Chantilly Fine Pastries is also growing with the new Le Chantilly Café at Garrett’s Desert Inn. Laura Shirley’s croissants, muffins and strudels are making the drive from the flagship Albuquerque location to the little Santa Fe bistro, which also offers salads, sandwiches, quiche and more tarts and cookies than you could reasonably eat in a lifetime, although you may want to try anyway. Stop by for breakfast, lunch or dessert from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday. 311 Old Santa Fe Trail, 982.1851, www.garrettsdesertinn.com/dining.

Here are a few noteworthy tidbits about The Spice Lady, the news store where you should probably go from now on when you have a need for seasoning. It carries more than 30 different kinds of salt (that’s dedication). It also carries more than two dozen varieties of curry. And the trend continues, with loose teas, herbs and off-the-wall spices like fennel pollen. Once you’ve stocked up on all the cinnamon and cumin your heart desires, check out the mortars and pestles, salt and pepper mills, and other spice accoutrements. 

Josh’s Barbecue closed its doors last month, but brisket lovers should despair, because it’s only temporary. In mid-December, Josh’s is opening right back up again, but in new digs and with a new name. Look for your favorite pulled pork and smoked turkey at The Ranch House, at 2571 Cristos. Not only will the new place offer the same barbecue as before, it’s going to have a greatly expanded menu, with new appetizers, salads and a special grill menu with steaks and salmon. That’s not the only thing that’s expanding, though, since the new location will also have two dining rooms, a tap room, a full bar and two covered patios. See? I told you not to worry. For now, you can still find it at www.joshsbbq.com.

The Santa Fe School of Cooking just made it into Southwest Airlines’ Spirit Magazine. The local business was featured in the publication’s “Experience Gifts” feature, which showcases ideas to “get off the couch and into the world.” The School of Cooking was nestled under “Experience Gifts for Gourmands,” where it was one of only six U.S. establishments to make the cut. Here’s a big pat on the back for the School of Cooking. If you want to get out “into the world,” you can find the school at 116 W. San Francisco, 983.4511, www.santafeschoolofcooking.com.

Welcome a new chef to Rosewood Inn of the Anasazi. Executive Chef Juan Bochenski is a native of Argentina who earned his Professional Cookery degree in 1995 in Buenos Aires. He spent the next 12 years working around Australia and in Paris and London. In 2008, he joined Rosewood’s 300-acre Jumby Bay in the Caribbean. Now, at the Anasazi, he’s ready to add a New Mexico touch to his global culinary sophistication. 113 Washington, 988.3030, www.innoftheanasazi.com.

The welcomes don’t stop there, though. Mike Esber was also just appointed as the executive chef of Hilton Santa Fe Golf Resort & Spa at Buffalo Thunder, and Steven Lemmon claims the same title for the Pueblo of Pojoaque. While Esber will oversee the Red Sage Restaurant, the Painted Parrot, Hilton banquets and room service, Lemmon will take control of the Turquoise Trail Bar & Grill. (Lemmon is also the owner and chef of O Eating House). Congrats to both fine chefs. 30 Buffalo Thunder Trail, 877.848.6337, www.buffalothunderresort.com.