SANTA FE, N.M. — The New Mexico Tourism Dept. has been designating various trails on its website, trying to wrangle tourists into any manner of gastronomic explorations.
But how can such things be chosen? Have the voters eaten every single breakfast burrito out there, doing head-to-head taste comparisons? Of course not. People who happen to even know about the online voting and want to make their choice known cast a ballot for whatever place probably is their regular stop.
Rebecca Latham, communications director at Tourism, said a call for nominations went out and were submitted online, voting took place, and the top spots chosen. “We monitored carefully for any evidence of fraud or excessive voting,” she said.
After all, you get suspicious that a restaurant owner with a large family and friends could get them to vote, day after day after day, to put him or her on the map. Could happen. But, according to Latham, “We are happy to say that every restaurant followed the rules!”
The department also has created a Green Chile Cheeseburger Trail. In Santa Fe, Santa Fe Bite, the Tune-Up Cafe and the Mine Shaft Tavern (well, OK, that one’s in Madrid) are listed.
And the Ale Trail — only includes pubs in Albuquerque! Say what?
That’s a “work in progress,” according to Latham. The New Mexico Brewers Guild developed a listing with 36 breweries around the state — the Tourism Dept. just hasn’t added that info beyond Albuquerque yet, she said earlier this week.