Nestled on the outskirts of the Santa Fe National Forest in the Pojoaque Valley, Estrella Del Norte Vineyard not only creates its own wines, but also stocks, sells, and hosts samplings of many other Northern New Mexico ambrosias. Arriving visitors meander down a pebbled pathway, past a flower garden, eclectic sculptures, and adorable grapevines whining for affection, entering the quaint tasting room lined on one side by a rustic wooden bar. Groups gather around tables, studying lists and sampling wines originating from the likes of Santa Fe Vineyards, Black Mesa Winery, and the homegrown vines just a stone's throw from the tasting room’s set of tall french doors.
In the historic landscape of El Camino Real, the Black Mesa's vines produce the purple foodstuffs formed and fermented into award-winning wines. Partakers can sit indoors or out on Black Mesa's gazeboed patio while wetting their whistles on a wealth of varietals, including chardonnay, riesling, cabernet sauvignon, merlot, syrah, and zinfandel. Tickle tongues' taste receptors with six of Black Mesa's wines and six New Mexican cheeses, earthier alternatives to showy moon gouda. Guests are gifted with two souvenir wine glasses and $20 towards a bottle of their choice, including Black Mesa's award-winning blends, such as Coyote, Antelope, and Black Beauty (prices range from $12.45-$34.50), ensuring at-home sips are enjoyed in more appropriate receptacles than plastic cups or "World's Best Cousin" mugs.
Ron and Olha Dolin didn’t discover their shared passion for wine and spirits until after they were married. Together they use Ron’s Ph.D. in engineering and Olha’s generational knowledge of producing vodka and brandy in Eastern Europe to craft handmade wines and fine spirits. Their wines include the specialty Emotion series, which includes cherry sherry, apple ice wine, and a wine made from rose petals. The two also distill spirits ranging from blue corn vodka and bourbon to gin made from New Mexico juniper, pinon, chamisa, sage, and rose hips.
At more than 1,000 Mattress Firm locations around the country, shoppers sink into plush mattresses, recline on firm beds, and belly-flop onto pillow tops. Knowledgeable staffers can help customers create an ideal bedtime environment by dispensing advice based on sleep preferences and illuminating the difference between the many kinds of mattresses. And to the delight of their customers, much of Mattress Firm's bedding wears the label of a premium brand, such as Sealy, Serta, Simmons Beautyrest, or Stearns & Foster.
Lauded for its inimitable art scene set against a stunning desert-dotted backdrop, Santa Fe might be the the ideal place to hold an art fair. Peppered with works from some of its 240 city galleries and pieces from international exhibitors, Art Santa Fe—now in its 13th year—expands on the city's proud tradition to showcase some of its most striking opuses alongside works by exhibitors from such far-flung locales as Madison, Wisconsin and Osaka, Japan. Visitors mingle with artists and art dealers while perusing gallery exhibits and art installations, all of which leads to a greater appreciation of the perfectly parallel yellow lines painted masterfully on many of America's highways. All tickets include admission to demonstrations of hanji papermaking by a Korean expert and monotype printing by a graphic artist.
For the fourth year in a row, the Santa Fe Independent Film Festival has gathered filmmakers and performers to celebrate the independent film movement. The organizers continue to hold the event in an effort to boost economic development while also providing opportunities for educational, cultural, and artistic growth for the community. In doing so, they host panels with authors and decorated directors and question-and-answer sessions after screenings. Sponsors such as Cowgirl BBQ, KUNM 89.9 FM, and Garrett's Desert Inn serve swag and grub respectively, and every night of the festival sees its visitors feting films at bars around Santa Fe. The screenings, many of which are New Mexico premieres, take place at the historic Lensic Performing Arts Center, Warehouse 21, and the Center for Contemporary Arts.