ABQ Trolley Co. has another way to see and experience the quirkiness that is Albuquerque. Its new 14 passenger “party bike,” called the Duke City Pedaler, began service last month for the bar and pub-hopping crowd. “It’s like a party on wheels,” says Mike Silva, co-owner of ABQ Trolley Co. with Jesse Herron. “It’s an opportunity for people to get together and have fun in a unique environment.” The leg-powered vehicle offers seating for up to 10 pedaling passengers and four non-pedalers. The two-hour rental is time enough to hit three or four establishments along a predetermined route, running Friday and Saturday nights, with expanded service in the summer. Visit abqtrolley.com for more. Pedal on, dudes!
April 8 is National Empanada Day, a day to embrace what many New Mexicans already know. Empanadas are the perfect hand-held delicious treat to eat any time of the day or year! In Albuquerque, the familiar treats are in high demand, according to Marina Arbetman-Rabinowitz, Linda Hayon and Ellen Goldstein, who run the catering and takeout business Nada but Empanadas. They offer a variety of savory and sweet empanadas (baked or frozen) including Argentinean beef, Southwest chicken, spinach and mozzarella, apple dulce de leche and more. Nada but Empanadas also offers monthly cooking classes and a dynamite cookbook. The menu (gluten-free, too!) and other information is available at nadabutempanadas.com or by calling 505.503.3228.
Chatter Sunday offers weekly Sunday morning concerts at 10:30 a.m. that also include readings and refreshments. April 19 brings duoW, violinist Arianna Warsaw-Fan and cellist Meta Weiss, two young Julliard graduates who use music videos and other new media to adapt classical music to a modern world. Although classically trained, they also play popular music, but keep each genre intact. These two musicians feel it is part of their generation’s responsibility and challenge to breathe new life into the phenomenal art form that is classical music. A full program calendar can be found at chatterabq.org. Sunday Chatter performances are held in the Kosmos performance space at the Factory on 5th, 1715 Fifth Street NW. Doors open at 9:30 a.m. For best seats, come early and enjoy the coffee and camaraderie!
The Outpost Performance Space has been on fire lately, with a March full of Women and Creativity performances, and an April that is sure to sell out several shows—including the two already sold out shows of theBranford Marsalis Quartet. How about seeing Alice Blumenfeld: Sueños Flamencos on April 4 instead? Originally from Albuquerque, where she began her study of flamenco, Alice Blumenfeld now dances and tours with Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana and EntreFlamenco, and also choreographs and produces her own work. In 2012, she was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship in dance to further her studies in Seville. The April 4 performance features nationally acclaimed musical accompanists Vicente Griego (cante) and guitarists Calvin Hazen and John Truitt, and intertwines traditional flamenco, jazz and Spanish boleros.
Then be at the Outpost again April 25 for Raquel Z. Rivera & Ojos De Sofia for an evening of original compositions, most of them written in the time-honored décima poetic format and arranged by Puerto Rican guitarist/cuatrista Bryan Vargas and Dominican guitarist Yasser Tejeda. The band will also play classic Latin American boleros featuring the extraordinarily soulful voice of Anabellie Rivera while also offering workshops and artist talks focused on the history, contemporary relevance and future potential of roots and popular genres of the Spanish-speaking Caribbean. The weeklong tour of New Mexico includes dates in Santa Fe (April 26) and workshops at Albuquerque Academy and University of New Mexico. See outpostspace.org for more on all shows.
The Martha Graham Dance Company comes to Popejoy Hall April 25, showcasing the choreographic talents of the distinguished Ms. Graham. Skilled dancers spark with emotion as they express the political, psychological and sexual themes that Martha Graham constantly challenged. The company will perform four pieces that personify Graham’s influential philosophy as a celebration of its 70th anniversary. Tickets at the UNM ticket offices and select Albertsons, online at popejoypresents.com or unmtickets.com, or call 877.664.8661.
For kids and their adults, Noah and his ark full of animals are coming to life in a production of Noye’s Fludde (Noah’s Flood) by Benjamin Britten, performed by a large cast of primarily children singers and musicians at First Presbyterian Church, 215 Locust Street NE, on April 19. The public is invited to the hour-long opera. Families are encouraged to attend, as the production will be enjoyable for children (and adults) of all ages. The fully staged opera features a large cast of children and young instrumentalists. The exquisite set depicting Noah’s Ark along with the waves, rainbow, sun and stars and unique Southwest-inspired costumes are courtesy of the Santa Fe Opera. Renowned New Mexico artist and santero, Charlie Carrillo, designed the set and costumes. Tickets at First Presbyterian, 505.764.2900, or at the door starting at 4:30 p.m. the day of the performance.
In our March story on Chocolate Fantasy, we had the wrong name of one of the chefs. It is chocolatier Rebecca Bonsal of ChocGlitz & Cream.
LATE BREAKING AND VERY EXCITING NEWS! The finalists for the James Beard awards have been announced and two New Mexicans are on the short list for this national honor– Chef Martin Rios of Restaurant Martin in Santa Fe for Best Chef of the Southwest and Ron Cooper of Del Maguey Single Valley Mezcal in Ranchos de Taos for Outstanding Spirits Professional. Get your tuxes ready, guys, we’re betting on you to bring home the gold.
Congratulations to Rancho Viejo Village Market on its fifth anniversary this month. The market in the Rancho Viejo subdivision hit the ground running and has seen steady growth. Southsiders appreciate the craft beers, wine and spirits from around the world, as well as fancy foods, specialty cheese, produce and virtually everything anyone could need. Denisio Tisland, beverage manager, writes, “The Market has a specialty wine club with exclusive perks that will showcase some unique and hard to find wines from around the world to accentuate our already popular wine tastings held on Friday evenings, a wine bar where guests can explore and expand their palate, which will house specialty classes on subjects like pairing, etc., and new additions and exciting things happening on the food/grocery side of the store as the year goes on!” Stop in to one of Santa Fe’s best-kept secrets, 55 Canada Del Rancho, Suite F.
Ristra Restaurant is now under new ownership and has changed its name. The new Radish and Rye is undergoing a remodel with an opening this spring (maybe as early as April). The website (still ristrasantafe.com) says Radish and Rye will focus on farm-inspired cuisine. The new owners are Dru Ruebush, Camille Bremer and master cocktail maker and sommelier Quinn Stephenson, partner in Geronimo and Coyote Café. Stay tuned, we’ll update you when we get more information.
Eldorado’s La Tienda shopping center has a new restaurant now, Oasis Cafe. John and Rebecca Conlon (he of Lamy’s late Legal Tender) feature an ethnic menu (Greek gyros, Italian paninis) and good old American sandwiches and salads, with a kid menu, too. They are open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., a sparkling oasis in an area with few options. Welcome to the neighborhood, Oasis Cafe!
Congrats to Karen Gardiner, owner of ArtfulTea, on opening a second Santa Fe location at 117 Galisteo Street. A grand opening event is planned for May, but until then, you can visit the new store, open seven days a week and boasting double the space of ArtfulTea’s Santa Fe Farmers Market location. Tea lovers will find an expanded selection of luxury loose leaf tea, fine teaware and three different teas brewed daily to sample, all personally selected by Gardiner, who brings 14 years of experience as a tea merchant to the table—or more to the point, the cup. Hours are Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Visit artfultea.com.
Estrella Del Norte Vineyard has released Zozobra Red, in partnership with one of the community’s largest events that funds much of the good work of the Kiwanis Club. You can taste and purchase the wine at the beautiful vineyard estate and winery just 15 minutes north of Santa Fe. Named after Santa Fe’s iconic Zozobra, or Old Man Gloom, this popular wine is vinted from local grapes and labeled with artwork traditional to the historic Zozobra character with a modern flair. Stock up on this limited supply for your next Zozobra fiesta party, where you can toast your gloom away. Head to estrelladelnortevineyard.com.
Fun stuff happens at the New Mexico History Museum every month, but April has this of special note. On April 8 at 9 a.m., CreativeMornings debuts with Robert Martin, executive and artistic director of the Lensic, a partnership with Albuquerque’s Creative Startups. Each month, alternating between Santa Fe and Albuquerque, CreativeMornings offers casual talks for graphic designers, authors, artists and other creative professionals, focused on various themes. On April 8, enjoy pastries and coffee from Santa Fe Baking Co. and light music by Santa Fe’s The Laser Cats. Do a little creative networking and hear a talk on this month’s global theme, humility, with Martin. These events are free and open to the public. CreativeMornings is a lecture series that takes place over a network of 106 host cities around the world. Talks are recorded and posted online. Learn more at creativemornings.com and watch the Santa Fe and Albuquerque application videos at vimeo.com/118654489 and vimeo.com/120385415.
Santa Feans appreciate learning more about food, especially when it comes to what our children eat. That’s why seeing the documentary film Lunch Hour is important. April 18 and April 22, join the Santa Fe Farmers Market Institute at the Jean Cocteau Cinema to see this examination of our country’s National School Lunch Program, which exposes children to unhealthy foods at a young age. More information at lunchhourmovie.org and get tickets at 505.466.5528 or jeancocteaucinema.com/buy-tickets.
Whoops. Last month we misplaced Arroyo Vino Restaurant and Wine Shop. The restaurant and shop is not in Aldea, but rather a few miles away at 218 Camino La Tierra. We apologize for the error.
We hope you raised a toast on March 14 to celebrate Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal’s 20th anniversary. Bartenders, family and friends around the globe were invited to join Ron Cooper in this milestone moment. In 1995, Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal introduced its original two single village expressions (Chichicapa and San Luis Del Rio), named after the villages where they are made. Now, Del Maguey has 18 expressions and produces from 10 different agave varietals. Del Maguey is credited with pioneering the artisanal mezcal category. “Twenty years ago there was nothing in the U.S. mezcal category that connected people in any way to the ancient practices that the indigenous people of Oaxaca have been employing since before the Spanish conquest,” says Cooper. “I wanted to share what I had discovered in Oaxaca—this previously unavailable artisanal mezcal, produced in the original handcrafted way—I had to create a new category, and rely on craft bartenders to help me educate consumers along the way.” Del Maguey produces Single Village Mezcal, a methodology that honors its Zapotec farmer producers and the distinct character and singular purity preserved from village to village. Assuring consistency within each expression, Cooper works with the same producers he did two decades ago. This has led to the great sense of family within the brand’s own team, as well as the international bartender and mixologist communities. Del Maguey was recently ranked by the U.K.-based Academy in its World’s 50 Best Bar Brands Reportas the No. 1 top trending brand. Del Maguey is also on the list of semi-finalists for a James Beard Award. What a year! Local Flavor congratulates you!
Story by Kelly Koepke