#41 | The Great Outdoors

Plans: Sometimes they pan out. And other times you go to turn on the grill, all your guests milling around in anticipation of the steaks, and realize you forgot to refill the gas. Or you drive all the way to Big Bend or Joshua Tree only to find that every last campsite is reserved. Or you plan to take a picnic to the top of Hermit Peak, like one of our writers did for our new issue, and a few days later that very peak is ablaze.

Suffice it to say, our plan for issue ten was hatched beneath smokeless skies. Actually, it was hatched beneath a ceiling, and it came out of a recurring epiphany that we do way too much dining at desk. Not that we expected producing an issue themed the Great Outdoors to cure us of this ill (we are eating a breakfast burrito as we type this, two-fingered, with our free hand), but we wanted stories that would tempt us. 

And we think these stories can. They will be, dear reader, our last stories in print for the summer, perhaps forever, so do not neglect to pick up a copy of the issue. Golf course burritos, wild game processing, glamping, a dutch oven festival, mountain mysteries, pizza and ice cream, and a recipe you will want to try. Plus: cool-as-a-cucumber-amuse-bouche cover art by Jennifer Nehrbass.

By the way, if you enjoy this newsletter, please pass it on! It will continue to land in your inbox every Saturday (except the odd week that it doesn’t), with the kinds of food news and stories you told us you want and love and need more of.

Speaking of our survey: thanks to those who participated for sharing your appreciation for all things The Bite. And congrats to the six participants whose names were pulled out of a virtual hat and will be receiving gift certificates to places with great patios.

Issue ten: The Great Outdoors is on stands now. Pick up a copy wherever edible New Mexico is found

Delicious Things

Driving home from Budai down San Mateo, the smell of smoke and spice filled the car, calling up a long-forgotten memory of walking by a restaurant in Taipei and making brief eye contact with a busy chef who was adding a crispy duck to the row of smoked birds hanging by the storefront window. Minutes later, devouring the Tea Leaves Smoked Duck, along with roasted eggplant and napa cabbage with shiitake, it was the taste buds’ turn to bask in pleasant memories of food from the other side of the planet.

Entrances & Exits

We were relieved to finally read the words “positive progress” on the New Mexico Fire Info page for the Hermits Peak and Calf Canyon fires, which is not to say that we’ve been able to wrap our heads around the loss—the homes, the ranches, the livestock, the bear paths, the secret groves of osha, the trees. Organizations serving folks affected by the fires can apply for grants at the All Together NM Fund (folks not affected can, of course, donate to the fund, or to one of the many others still accepting donations).

In cooler news, La Lecheria’s new Santa Fe Railyard location is now open. Joel Coleman (also, until very recently, of Fire & Hops) is the flavor nerd behind seasonal flavors like basil, green chile, and cracker jack (during old-school cereal season). 

Not yet, but Heidi’s Raspberry Farm will be opening an ice cream shop at their jam factory at 3427 Vassar Drive NE in Albuquerque. Stay tuned. 

Ruidoso has a new food truck: Downs Eatery does burgers, loaded fries, and hand-battered fried jalapeños and onions and pickles. And if you need a whole bag of burgers, they can do that for you too.


For plant-based-food enthusiasts and the vegan-curious: Tomorrow, June 5, which is National Animal Rights Day, the Plant-Powered Pop Up Market is at Tiguex Park in Albuquerque. Stargazer Kombucha will be there. So will Vegos. Also, El Káahal Nuestro, whose omnivore specialties you can read about in “In Search of a Better Taco al Pastor,” from The Bite’s Taco issue. 

Tired of all your go-to outdoor places that you can currently go to? Consider visiting the Gutiérrez Hubbell House in Albuquerque’s South Valley to check out the indoor/outdoor exhibition, Nuestras Acequias: Remembering our History, Irrigating our Crops, and Nourishing the Future of our Community, on view through July 9. Next Saturday, June 11, there’s the Wonder of Water Family Program, with guides and hands-on exploration, and on June 25 there will be a rain-harvesting workshop.

The following Saturday, ¡Festival de Naturaleza del Barrio! is happening at Phil Chacon Park in Albuquerque. The Pop Fizz food truck will be there, as will Recycleman, plus birds and music and a bike repair clinic. And if your Spanish is limited, not to worry—the storytelling and puppet show will be performed in English as well.

Also June 18 (and 19) is the Santa Fe Herb and Lavender Festival at El Rancho de las Golondrinas. We don’t have word yet on who’s doing food, but Sheehan Winery will be there, and that’s good enough for us.  


“I’m not sure I feel completely comfortable, but it’s in the sense that someone’s about to pinch me and wake me from a dream—a cyclist’s dream where I’m not hypervigilant of traffic or the hurried crisscrossing of day-to-day life,” Joshua Johnson writes of his experience at Bike In Coffee at Old Town Farm in Albuquerque. “Somehow this place just doesn’t seem real, and yet it is.” Follow the rest of his ride in “A Cyclist’s Dream.” 

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