Maria's Santa Fe: A Fine Start in Enjoying More Local Fare
Jul 8, 2010
Review by Phil Popsrocks
Rated a Very Helpful Review
User Rating: Excellent
Ambiance and Decor:
Quality of Service:
Pros:Upbeat atmosphere. Good Service and excellent homegrown food.
Cons:chili margarita wasn't to our taste but the souvenir glass was
The Bottom Line: Maria's became the restaurant I compared other New Mexican restaurants too. I loved the atmosphere, the food and the service.
My wife and I spent about five days in the Santa Fe area visiting the town and also using it as a home base for small excursions. We were also sure to try a few places to eat that reflected the local fare of the region. One place my wife read of was Maria's in Santa Fe. For overall feel and meal this was one of my best Mexican type food dining experiences while there.
Recommend this product?
Maria's...A Santa Fe Tradition
According to information I picked up at the restaurant, Maria's has been around since 1950 saying, We've fed presidents, senators, governors, first ladies, movie stars but, in all those years, there's never been anybody as important as you!
I thought they lived those words wwhen we were there.
In 1985 some twenty five years ago a couple purchased the restaurant and have been hands-on owners.
The restaurant serves New Mexican cooking also noting that they use product grown in the region. They use New Mexican Grown Chile only. They also claim expertise in tequila. By the size of their Margarita menu they should know something as it had many selections (160 of them) including dozens of tequilas priced from $6-$48.
As with many other choices we find from Frommer's and Fodors books my wife generally walks into the place on her own giving it a once over checking the menu, prices, atmosphere, cleanliness and attention of the staff. She called me telling me to come on in. She was getting us seated. I walked in looking for her and had to go through some four five or six different rooms trying to find her. The restaurants rooms and bars were clearly of New Mex feel. Each room was decorated well and felt homey/comfortable. In reading about the restaurant, most of the furnishings were from the nearby LaFonda Hotel (a place we had drinks and on another day a delightful lunch) but pre world war II. The restaurant seemed to have more locals rather than tourists by looking at the groups at tables and in the bar. That to me was a good sign.
The service was excellent. Our personal server was friendly, concerned, knowledgeable and available when we needed. The bus staff was extremely helpful too when jumping in answering questions about the type of food I ordered and what went with what. I don't have much experience eating Mexican foods this guy helped me out showing pride in his knowledge.
I ordered Maria's combination plate that offered cheese enchilada, a taco with guacamole, a tamale, and chile relleno that was simply fabulous! This was the first time I ever had it so I can't compare it to others but Maria's chile relleno was what I compared my other Mexican restaurant dishes to. My wife loved it too. She also liked their hand made flour tortillas.
We tried their margarite with a taste of chile powder in it. Not for us. Their margarita with Grand Marnier added was perfect.
The prices I thought were reasonable that plate I had was $15.00.
Pops Last Thoughts
I really liked this place. It was the atmosphere first. It was upbeat, colourful and ...happy! The service was excellent and I loved the food. I can recommend this place and by the amount of local people using it for small parties They do too.
Santa Fe: We Enjoyed All It Had To Offer
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