SANTA FE, N.M. — When a friend and I stopped by Estevan Restaurante in the Hotel Chimayó for a dinner early in the new year, we were a little at a loss what to do when there was no obvious host or hostess to guide us to our table. But no problem – executive chef Estevan Garcia soon emerged from the back and graciously did the honors.
Now that’s personal service!
The room itself set a beautiful atmosphere, from the crackling fire in the large fireplace to the tiny lights wrapped around the hanging chile ristras (I assume leftover Christmas decorations) to the large religious wall murals and abundance of wood in the furniture and ceiling. It felt somewhere between a centuries-old hacienda and a church. We settled in to nibble and converse, with no trouble hearing each other in the low-key, quiet space.
Before we ordered, the waitress brought us a complimentary plate of blue and yellow corn chips around a delicious red chile dip, which had both smoke and spark. It was a tasty, restrained way to pique our appetites.