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V.20 No.33 | 8/18/2011
Sergio Salvador


Torinos’ @ Home

The pig face is local!

Occitania is a cultural region centered on the narrowest part of the Iberian Peninsula. It includes Mediterranean and Atlantic coasts, rugged mountains, fertile valleys, and grape terrace-filled hills. This land of figs and fish is mostly French but includes parts of Spain and Italy. The Northern Italian restaurant Torinos’ @ Home, off Jefferson in the Journal Center, is the next best thing to a plane ticket to Occitania’s northeast corner.

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V.20 No.32 | 8/11/2011
Ray Sisneros knows how to grow a cabbage.
Courtesy of the Cuba Farmers’ Market


Market Report: Cuba

The little turnip that could

Only about eight booths long, the Cuba Farmers’ Market has a big heart. And since there’s not always enough booty to go around, getting there early is recommended. Cuba is a hub for a large, beautiful and funky area. The market is a distillation of the surrounding mountains, canyons, valley and scrubland, and it foments a sense of community that’s been waiting to happen. Locals are “over the moon about it,” says Shari Smoker of the UNM Prevention Research Center, which helped create the market last year. “They just love it so much. It’s giving people a place to have a sense of community and talk to their neighbors and get to know their growers.”
V.20 No.29 | 7/21/2011
A trio of grilled romaine hearts are filled with lentil salad in an herby vinaigrette.
Sergio Salvador



Local meats, exotic flavors

Pastoral paintings of thoughtful, grass-chomping cows adorn the red walls of Albuquerque’s brand-new designer burger joint, bRgR. The restaurant’s lineup of burger names could double as the course catalog of a tantric yoga ashram, including (in order of the stages of spiritual growth) the Harmonic, Elation, Euphoria, Jubilation, Ecstasy, Nirvana and, finally, Enlightenment. The beef, which is grass-fed and grain-finished, comes from Heritage Ranch, a national beef company that matches local beef producers with consumers, state by state.
V.20 No.28 | 7/14/2011
Pratt Morales opened Golden Crown Panadería 35 years ago.
Sergio Salvador


Golden Crown

Adobe carb laboratory gets grow room

The most local salads in town might come from a bakery. An indoor growing operation—lights, fans, reflectors and of course plants—was germinated in the west end of Golden Crown Panadería last April. For the counter staff, it's almost too local for comfort, as the expanding tangle of greens, tomatoes and peppers is growing into their workspace. If you order one of the appropriately named “huge” salads, they find the scissors and start snipping. They also make one of the best loaves of green chile bread on the planet.
V.20 No.26 | 6/30/2011
Sergio Salvador


Market Report

Early birds and late-bloomers in the North Valley

Throughout the growing season, New Mexico is home to fresh food markets every day of the week. You can follow the progression of summer by watching the diversity of produce unfold like a kaleidoscope on vendors’ tables. And you can travel to markets around the state and marvel at the differences that elevation and latitude make in what can be grown.

View in Alibi calendar calendar

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Kathy Isaacson tends an Urban Garden.
Mina Yamashita

Mina's Dish

The Urban Store

Green living sprouts up from the concrete

The Urban Store has been open since January and is the brainchild of Kathy Isaacson and co-owner Chuck Alex. The Nob Hill shop, on Silver, is deceptively ordinary. Issacson sports a T-shirt bearing the store’s working philosophy—“grow, eat, return.” How simple is that?

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V.20 No.25 | 6/23/2011
The pastries are made in-house. The coffee is roasted in the East Mountains.
Sergio Salvador


Jo’s Place

There’s nothing average about this Jo

If you had to pick a single Albuquerque street on which to dine for the rest of your life, you could do worse than Fourth. The diversity of restaurants on this North Valley artery is matched by a uniform unpretentiousness, as if by some silent but Spanglish-speaking truce. Dennis Apodaca has built a restaurant empire on a single half-mile stretch of that pavement. First came Sophia’s Place, named after his daughter. Then came Ezra’s Place, named after his son. And finally Jo’s Place, named after his mom, joined the block party in March.

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V.20 No.23 | 6/9/2011
Veggie frittata
Sergio Salvador


Cafe Green Photos

The unpublished pics

We had some shots from Locovore’s recent visit to Cafe Green that we liked too much not to share ... kind of like that crème brûlée.

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Eggs Benedict is a plateful of good mornin’.
Sergio Salvador


Cafe Green

Fresh ideas in seasonal cuisine

Meat, of all the ingredients a restaurant serves, is arguably the most deserving of care in how it is sourced. Unless, perhaps, the name of the restaurant in question is Cafe Green. At the three-year-old Downtown breakfast and lunch joint, the greens of both the salad and the chile persuasions are local. And some of the meat on the menu is too, if you consider Pueblo, Colo, to be local. (We do.)

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V.20 No.22 | 6/2/2011
Gorgonzola cheese and applewood-smoked bacon beef up the Five Star Burger.
Sergio Salvador


Five Star Burgers

Meat that’s bloody well done

Last week I explained the new direction this review column is taking, including the fact that I’ll no longer be eating or writing about mystery meat. There are many shades of mystery, and this simple-sounding mandate was tested numerous times during my first attempt to follow it at Five Star Burgers—with tasty results.
V.20 No.21 | 5/26/2011
Recycled materials are sturdy and budget-wise.
Michael Foltz

Mina's Dish

All Cooped Up

I’m tagging along with Michael Foltz and Marissa Evans visiting feed suppliers in the North and South Valleys. Today’s the day to populate the backyard coop Foltz has been building for the past few months using mostly recycled wood and fittings. It’s a cozy roost to house seven or eight birds, with a run protected by chicken wire. A nice little goat-fence-style gate opens into the small enclosure.

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Jeff Drew


Eating the Change We Seek

The Alibi's new local-centric mandate for food criticism

At the Alibi, we’ve always had high standards for the food we cover, and now we’re aiming higher—by turning our gaze down upon the earth beneath our feet and toward local foods. Without abandoning the appreciation of good cooking, we're expanding our criteria to include the processes that bring the ingredients to the kitchen—an area where too much food criticism, and too many restaurants, fall short. Welcome to Locovore.

V.20 No.20 | 5/19/2011
Ari LeVaux

Food for Thought

Chicken From Scratch

When the roosters get tough, the tough make coq au vin

Coq au vin, literally “rooster in wine,” is a recipe that can be simple or complex. My version is geared toward those starting with a big, tough old rooster in the yard, but it works with any chicken. An old hen would also do the trick, but I don't kill my hens. So that leaves the roosters, the meaner the better.

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Eric Williams


Do It Yourself, Honey

Urban farmers take living well into their own hands

A colony of 80,000 bees holds enough sting to kill you—actually, it holds enough to kill about 80 of you. But sitting a few feet away from a hive that’s nearly as tall as she is, Chantal Foster is unfazed as yellow-and-black honeybees whiz by on a pollen-fueled highway. Maybe it’s because, with rare exception, the potentially deadly flying insects seem to have no interest in her. The bees are on a mission, and it’s about getting frisky with flowers, not ferocious with humans.

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V.20 No.16 | 4/21/2011
By summertime, you’ll be looking at this.
Ari LeVaux

Food for Thought

Three Gardens in One

A springtime strategy for maximum yields

Searching for the best crops to plant with garlic, Ari LeVaux developed a technique called "tossing seeds randomly." He put all the seeds he didn't get around to planting last year into a jar, shook it up and threw them by handfuls. This experiment produced the "garlic patch friends" and a springtime strategy for maximum yields.
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