Have you been to Tabla de Los Santos lately?

- July 19, 2011

"The plate was beautiful, colorful and filled with vegetables from the Farmers Market..."

Changes at the Plaza can be disconcerting. Traditions erased. Emptiness gnawing within. Hence I wandered into the Hotel St Francis and wondered what happened to...??? Fortunately, the outside patio was opened. Cool air welcomed this visitor. Wait staff promptly appeared.  Large umbrellas blocked the sun and much of the sky.

I had hoped for the soup du jour, but alas it was not vegetarian. My next request was for a side salad, but that, too, was not available. My waiter said "Let's see what I can do." I ordered their version of a non-fried, no batter chile relleno appetizer.

While waiting, I asked the man next to me if he was going to the free concert. He did not know about the Santa Fe bandstand. He asked me if I'd like to share a table. The energy of the night shifted.

The side salad arrived on an eight-inch plate. I asked if he was sure that this was the side salad. The plate was beautiful, colorful and filled with vegetables from the Farmers' Market. Yeah, Santa Fe's Farmers' Market. Whole baby carrots, baby radishes cut in half. Tomatoes and greens. and much more.  Beauty usually stimulates the appetite, and I insisted that Dave share some.

Dave had a trout dinner. Conversation flowed crossing decades. He insisted that I share the flan. A goat cheese flan, which truly is the best flan I have ever tasted.  Leisurely dining, excellent service, and my dinner under $15.00. A full dinner, wine or beverage and dessert would run more.

Re-discover the secret delights nestled downtown Santa Fe. Let the poet dance through delicate flavors, serene patio atmosphere and exceptional service. Nourish yourself.

Confession: poets are always ready to devour food and energetic nuggets.