Christmas at an elegant private home in Santa Fe, New Mexico: Ristras, farolitos, and snow. Photo copyright Berenguela 2007 Getting to Know Governor Susana Martinez
December 5th, 2009: last night it was 11 degrees below zero in Santa Fe. It's always frigid in winter, but winter's not even here yet! So, how's that global warming working for you? We had our first snowstorm last year just before Hallowe'en!
September 11th, 2010: the Santa Fe nights are now in the 40--degree range. The nights are always cool enough in the summer (in the 60-degree range), but this next eleven days of el verano will be delightful. If you are expecting Santa Fe to remind you of a desert or hot and tropical area, let me remind you that we are situated at the bottom of the Rocky Mountains, at an altitude of 7,300 feet.
Moon over St. Michael's Drive, Santa Fe, New Mexico
¡Bienvenidos! This is a web-site devoted to the Spanish cultural heritage of Santa Fe, New Mexico. Here you will find interesting information about Santa Fe and its people. Visit our native restaurants that don't distort the original character of the local cuisine. One of these, where the lack of pretension is refreshing, as is the traditional New Mexican cooking, is Tiny's, located just off Cerrillos on Pen Road. Another traditional culinary landmark in Santa Fe is The Pantry, which is open for breakfast and lunch. Castro Café is another traditional Santa Fe restaurant with New Mexican atmosphere. Del Charro, at the corner of Alameda and Don Gaspar, is an unpretentious yet quintessentially Santa Fean bar. My favorite native Santa Fe restaurant is Horseman's Haven, a rustic joint on lower Cerrillos Road that is famous for its ultra-hot green chile sauces. There are so many restaurants in Santa Fe; you will certainly never go without good food, whatever your taste
Don't forget to pick up a free copy of the Gonzales family's publication, Santa Fe HOMETOWN NEWS, at Tiny's and other native Santa Fe businesses.
A traditional, elegant landmark restaurant near the center of Santa Fe, just off Canyon Road (look for their black and white sign on the left side as you go up Canyon Road--you will turn left there and go downhill to the restaurant), is The Compound. Award-winning chef Mark Kiffin runs a tight ship, and the food is consistently delicious. The Compound: where those locals in the know go....
The following is an excerpt from the Compound's website: "Award-winning restaurateur, Chef Mark Kiffin, has revitalized The Compound Restaurant, a renowned restaurant at the cultural center of Santa Fe. The Compound, remembered for its distinctive style and elegance since the 1960's, has been rejuvenated with the energy and excitement that made it a leading destination in its early years. The Compound has been recreated with a modern menu layering bold flavors based on historic culinary traditions; a knowledgeable and highly attentive staff; and an inviting, elegant setting."
Don Diego de Vargas
Established in 1607, Santa Fe is the second oldest city founded by European colonists in the United States. Only St. Augustine, Florida, founded in 1565, is older. Built upon the ruins of an abandoned Tanoan Indian village, Santa Fe was the capital of the "Kingdom of New Mexico ,” which was claimed for Spain by Coronado in 1540. Its first governor, Don Pedro de Peralta, gave the city its full name, "La Villa Real de la Santa Fe de San Francisco de Asís,"or "The Royal City of the Holy Faith of Saint Francis of Assisi". San Miguel Chapel in Santa Fe is the oldest church in the United States, constructed around 1610. The Palace of the Governors was built between 1610 and 1612 and is the oldest government building in the country. During the next 70 years, the Spanish colonists and missionaries sought to convert the approximately 100,000 Pueblo Indians of the region. However, in 1680, the Pueblo Indians revolted, killing almost 400 Spanish colonists and drove the rest back into Mexico. The conquering Indians then burned most of the buildings in Santa Fe except for the Palace of the Governors and the San Miguel Chapel. The Pueblo Indians occupied Santa Fe until 1693, when Don Diego de Vargas reestablished Spanish control. Santa Fe remained Spain's provincial seat until 1821, when Mexico won its independence from Spain and the city became the capital of the Mexican territory of Santa Fe de Nuevo México. When Mexico gained its independence from Spain, Santa Fe became the capital of the province of New Mexico. Because trade was no longer restricted as it was under Spanish rule, trappers and traders moved into the region. In 1821 William Becknell opened the 1,000 mile-long Santa Fe Trail, bringing hundreds of new settlers to the area. On August 18, 1846, during the early period of the Mexican American War, an American army general, Stephen Watts Kearny, took Santa Fe and raised the American flag over the Plaza. Two years later in 1848, Mexico signed the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo ceding New Mexico and California to the United States.