The Fabulous Fall Fiesta

The annual fall fundraiser for the Santa Fe Farmers Market Institue

Autumn is just around the corner, and with it comes the Fall Fiesta, the annual fundraising event for the Santa Fe Farmers Market Institute held Saturday, October 3 from 6 to 9 p.m. in the Farmers Market Pavilion. This popular celebration of local food, community and culture features a four-course feast created by some of Santa Fe's top chefs and one of the best silent auctions least if you're a foodie and a fan of culture and community.

Best of all, this event generates key operating funds for the Santa Fe Farmers Market Institute, strengthening northern New Mexico agriculture, preserving small farms and building community support for locally produced food. The funds also help fight against food insecurity by making healthy food available to the Santa Fe community and maintains the permanent home for the Santa Fe Farmers Market in the Railyard.

Let's begin with a look at this year's menu, a bountiful harvest of dishes prepared by some of Santa Fe's favorite chefs, including Restaurant Martin's Martin Rios, who will prepare White Pacific Shrimp Ceviche with Avocado Aji Amarillo and Peppered Popcorn. Paper Dosa's Paulraj Karuppasamy will offer Beet Croquette, and John Rivera Sedlar, of Eloisa Restaurant, one of the the city's newest restaurants, will create Grilled Eggplant Rollatini with peppers, goat cheese and basil. David Gaspar of Radish & Rye, also new this year, will cook up a Savory Corn Custard.

Next up, a Raw Vegetable Salad with Truffle Vinaigrette prepared by Joseph Wrede of Joseph’s Culinary Pub, served with an assortment of breads baked by Willem Malten of Cloud Cliff Bakery.

Dinner features a tempting array of entrees and sides, including Thai-Cambodian Red Chicken Curry made by Chef Nath of Sweetwater Harvest Kitchen; a vegan Ratatouille from David Mora of the brand new Boxcar Bar and Grill; a vegetarian Fall Slaw from John Bobrick of the equally new Derailed at the Sage Inn; and vegan Spiced Cauliflower “Rice” from Noela Rodriguez of Fold Community Kitchen.

Be sure to leave room for dessert, which includes Bizcochitos by Zara Southard of Maggie’s Cakes; Amaretto Semifreddo from Zia Diner's Beth Koch; French Macarons and Raw Vegan Fudge from Indulge's Chaine Pena and Misha Hesse; and coffee provided by Todd Spitzer, Darren Berry and Natalie Slade of Iconik Coffee Roasters and Café.

Speaking of drinks, there will be lots to choose from, including a cocktail of fresh apple juice and prosecco from Verde Juice, craft ale donated by Second Street Brewery, margaritas from Zia Diner, and an array of wines.

If that's not enough to whet your appetite, consider some of the tantalizing items up for bid in the annual silent auction. There's lunch for two at Alice Water's famed Chez Panisse restaurant in Berkeley; dinner for 10 at Il Piatto prepared by a chef Matt Yohalem; and lunch in the gardens of Romero Farms in Dixon prepared by chefs Yohalem, James Campbell Caruso of La Boca/La Taberna and chef/farmer Matt Romero. You can also bid on a night in Nambe, with accommodations at a 300-year-old home and dinner prepared by David Sundberg of Blue Corn Brewery (south), followed by breakfast from Clafoutis and a guided hike with New Mexico Tour Guide Tomas Gallegos.

Each year, the Fall Fiesta presents the Farmer All Star Awards, honoring the dedication and hard work of three Farmers' Market vendors. This year's winners are Dave and Loretta Fresquez from Monte Vista Organics, Jose Gonzales of Gonzales Farms and Camino de Paz School and Farm.

The Fall Fiesta would not take place without the help of a team of volunteers. If you're interested in helping prepare for the event with set up, check-in assistance, auction support and clean up, contact Alexis Brown at 505-983-7726 x.105 or

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