Quaint Adobe buildings, old towns that feel like Mexico, and abundant beautiful Native American arts and crafts can be encountered in New Mexico!
In this post, I would like to introduce you to some of our best finds in the beautiful city of Santa Fe and the state’s capital of Albuquerque!
Santa Fe, NM
In Santa Fe it’s best to leave your car parked and explore the old town by foot, as there are so many lovely passages and hidden gems in form of restaurants and bars that you may miss during a drive-by! We have visited this beautiful city twice and here are some of our favorite finds for plant-based food fans and/or wine lovers:
For a nice meal in a gorgeous historic setting, head to Hotel La Fonda in the middle of Old Town Santa Fe! Their restaurant La Plazuela is the centerpiece here, serving eclectic Mexican cuisine. While you take in the pleasant surroundings, try the table-side guacamole made to your taste, gazpacho soup, tacos and burrito, which can all be veganized. For spice lovers: ask for chile toreado as a side order! If you like tequila, try their superb organic margarita, which ditches the sugar!
For lighter lunches around Santa Fe’s Old Town, check out two places situated in a shopping arcade by the plaza: Beestro for Middle Eastern food, where you can create your own salad bowl topped with falafel! Dumplings & Tea next door for vegan versions of their dumplings along with the tasty kelp salad.
For a great dining experience in one of Santa Fe’s finest restaurants, give Geronimo a try! Located in a quieter neighborhood, it features a lovely indoor area, bar and patio. Some of their fine cuisine can be veganized, so just ask the server for a recommendation!
If you would like to try the higher quality New Mexico wines, check out Herves Wine Bar in an arcade close to Santa Fe’s Plaza, where you can sample wine flights.
Albuquerque has its own charm and is best known for the annual Balloon Festival, the largest annual event in the city. We have visited twice during the Albuquerque Harvest Wine Festival over Labor Day Weekend and discovered New Mexico wines!
For nature lovers, don’t miss the fantastic Botanical Garden in Albuquerque or take a stroll through the Rio Grande National Park.
Below is an overview of our favorite places and plant-based options in Albuquerque:
Around Albuquerque Old Town:
Hotel Chaco’s Level 5 is hands-down one of our favorite roof top bars in the entire USA! The hotel itself is a stunning modern take on traditional Mexican style, and part of the Heritage Hotel Collection. Their roof top bar and restaurant is Level 5, which offers a 180° view over the city! This is your perfect combination of ambiance and delicious F&B offerings, so plan your evening around being here! From their interesting menu we enjoyed veganized versions of the Sawmill Salad, Avocado Hummus, Flatbread with truffles/asparagus/mushrooms/onions and their vegan entrée special.
Hotel Albuquerque is a historic landmark of Albuquerque old town and they have the lovely Garduño's of Mexico Restaurant & Cantina, which offers an indoor restaurant and beautiful patio garden seating too! We tried the guacamole, quesadilla and tacos, all very tasty and affordable for such a nice place!
If you stroll through the charming historic old town, you will chance upon the Church Street Café, which comes with a beautiful garden patio where you can enjoy veganizable Mexican dishes. Around another corner you can find the Backstreet Grill, which offers Mexican and American foods that can easily be adjusted to plant-based. They made very nice tacos and a black bean & rice bowl for us!
For a fully vegan lunch or dinner experience, check out these amazing ethnic restaurants:
Annapurna World Vegetarian Cafe with a large selection of Indian and Asian-inspired dishes. We loved their samosas, Thai noodles and ginger tea!
The Thai Vegan offers cruelty-free food since 2009 in a very Thai-style setting! We enjoyed the curry dumplings and green Thai curry here.
For wine lovers, we highly recommend two local wineries that produce quality libations and welcome you for tastings as well: Gruet Winery – best known for superb sparkling wines (the Brut Rose is one of my all-time favorites) and Casa La Rondena Winery– very nice red wines and a lovely dry rose for hot summer days.
Greetings from your traveling friend
President & Founder of Health Healing & Happiness LLC