Once a historic coal mining town and ghost town, Madrid is now a creative community with over 40 shops and galleries representing 100's of artists. Madrid also features 5 restaurants and 3 local bed & breadfasts.
Mine Shaft Tavern
2846 Highway, 14 Madrid, NM 87010 | 505-473-0743
Founded: 1947 Owners: Lori Lindsay and Jeffrey Kutcher
The original tavern was established around 1895 in Madrid (pronounced MAD-rid). It burned down on Christmas Day in 1944. The Mine Shaft Tavern was rebuilt in 1947 with much of the interior the same today, including the 40 ft. lodge pole pine known as the longest stand-up bar in New Mexico. Madrid became known as a ghost town for about 20 years in the 1950's, with the Mine Shaft Tavern reported as the most haunted place in Madrid. Since the 1970's the tavern has become an oasis for many and is known for being "Madrid's living room", a biker bar, artist haven, tourist stop, melodrama theatre and more. The Mine Shaft Tavern is the oldest continually run tavern in Santa Fe County. It's known for "New Mexico Roadhouse Cuisine"—green chile burgers and buffalo burgers, handcut fries, homemade green and red chile sauces, organic greens, great daily specials and desserts. Lunch and dinner. Full bar.
Pie Town is itself an "honorary" Culinary Treasure, because of the long-standing dessert tradition that gave the hamlet its name. Back in the 1920s, in the era of the Great Depression, many folks headed westward to California. The route for many was Highway 60 (then a rutted dirt road) through New Mexico and over the Continental Divide. Some travelers broke down and stayed put in whatever locale they found themselves. That was how the 8,000-foot-altitude settlement got its start, and since the first merchant sold pies, well, you guessed it, Pie Town was born. A succession of pie cafes have been operated here through the years by various folks.
Highway 60 Pie Town, NM | 575-772-2711
Owner/Baker: Kathy Knapp
Today, the place to visit is the Pie-o-Neer on the town's main street, "Pieway" 60, where operator Kathy Knapp keeps the history alive. Kathy comes from a long line of pie-bakers and each day she offers a variety of pie selections from her large repertoire. Soups, sandwiches, and other homemade savory fare also served. Usually open 11-4 Friday through Monday, but call ahead before making a special trip.
Pinos Altos was founded as a mining town, after an 1860 gold strike in the nearby Pinos Altos Mountains. A few miles north of Silver City, the town was later abandoned, but today has a few businesses that capitalize on its period charm.
The Buckhorn Saloon and Opera House
Main Street, Pinos Altos, NM 88053 | 575-538-9911
Founded: 1860s Owner: Dink Tatch; Proprietor: Tom Bock
A vintage Main Street classic. Old steakhouse with new added specialties as well. Recently remodeled without loss of its truly unique character. Dinner, bar, often live entertainment.
The city's downtown area is centered around a traditional-style town square, based upon Spanish urban design. The center of the town square includes the 1930s WPA-style Roosevelt County Courthouse, including original architectural details from the era, as well as the adjacent 1930s Post Office. The Yam Theater, a historic theater located in the downtown area, is currently under renovation.
1208 W. First St., Portales New Mexico 88130 | 575-226-8226
Founded: 1969 Owner: Tom Martin
Known in Portales as the "Hometown Tacotorium," the cheerful Taco Box has been owned by Tom Martin since shortly after its 1969 founding. Great green chile cheeseburgers, taquitos, and other New Mexican fast food, but made right. The dining room is ringed with delightful local tschotskes. Breakfast, lunch, dinner.
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