Inspired by the seafood of the American Northwest, the culinary team at Desert Fish prepare exclusively wild-caught catches using fresh, contemporary seasonings. The cucumber-melon finish of their Shigoku oysters from Washington State’s Willapa Bay prime palates for kona coffee-crusted Hawaiian snapper or house-made gnocchi with littleneck clams and pan-roasted brussel sprouts in brown butter sauce. Behind the bar, bartenders compliment the dishes with wines and specialty cocktails mixed with fresh fruit juices and herbs, such as the Mint Mirage martini, whose basil Hayden Bourbon and fresh mint magically disappear before diners’ eyes over the course of about 20 minutes. The restaurant also serves weekend brunches, offering a diverse selection that spans from fried oysters with biscuits and gravy to crab cake Benedict.
Creative Balloons & Invitations populates weddings, quinceañeras, anniversaries, and birthday parties with a wide range of invitations and celebratory packs of motley balloons. The DIY invitations provide a huge range of customizable invitation formats, none of which rely on yelling invites to a fête through a parking-cone megaphone. A $10 setup fee applies for in-store printing, and single invitation prices range from $1.20 for a 4"x6" card to $1.85 for a 6"x9" card. Ready-made invitations for birthday parties, anniversaries, and other momentous occasions also stand ready to entice recipients with heartfelt emotions and cavalier carousing. Form a helium-filled force field around a birthday bash or C-SPAN2 viewing party with a balloon arch ($6/foot; $10 travel charge for parties 6–25 miles from the store), or buy balloons one at a time ($.99 each) as an expression of inflatable individuality.
Back in the '80s, winemaking was just a hobby for artist and wine enthusiast Jim Fish. Today, some of his original hobby casks still serve as a reminder of how far he's come, as they stand surrounded by hundreds of gallons of newer wines. At Anasazi Fields Winery, Fish focuses on table wines made from locally-sourced fruits and berries such as plum, apricot, blackberry, and peach. And despite being fruit wines, they're dry and multi-faceted, a far cry from the sweet varietals some might imagine when they hear fruit wine.
The winery is open throughout the year, beckoning visitors inside for tastes and tours, events, or to buy a bottle, sold on the premises. Orchards and vineyards surround the property, all watered by a spring-fed irrigation system that dates back more 1000 years when Anasazi people farmed the valley.
Dragon’s House of Horror, whose edifice used to house Rio Rancho’s city hall, sends chills racing up and down visitors’ spines with two stories of frightening special effects. The spooky building opens its doors to thrill-seekers Mondays through Saturdays for the entirety of October, as well as the last two Sundays of the month. Dragon’s House of Horror ensures a safe, family friendly environment for young children with an on-location kid’s harvest and a low-scare level for the first hour after opening. By 7 p.m., the easily frightened should flee the scene before tortured spirits, ghoulish monsters, and persistent tax collectors materialize out of the darkness to raise hairs with the help of bone-chilling sound effects. or ####RR Winter Wonderland Occupying the same building that was once Rio Rancho's City Hall, RR Winter Wonderland rules in favor of the holiday spirit by immersing visitors into a seasonal dream world. Inside, guests young and old navigate through a lineup of interactive, Christmas-themed activities, including toy-making workshops and a lights maze. Between those stations, guests may stop to snap pictures with Santa and characters from the movie The Nightmare Before Christmas or to browse Christmas trees waiting for a new home.
Taking full advantage of the rugged and beautiful surroundings of northern New Mexico, the guides and staff of Santa Fe Mountain Adventures curate outdoor experiences that are perfect for escaping the everyday. By working with a collection of local businesses, they provide services ranging from fully-appointed trail rides on horseback to fly-fishing trips on private ranches to rafting excursions down the Rio Grande. Custom designed vacation experiences let adventurers choose from a wide variety of activities, and always incorporate culturally and intellectually enriching elements that they'll remember long after they travel home or decide to live among the iguanas.
Pecos Flavors Winery opened fairly recently—in 2004, originally just as a Roswell-based tasting room—but it brims with New Mexico history. The facility's current tasting room, for instance, takes on the identity of a southern New Mexico ranch. Its bar is a century old, plucked from Hondo Valley. Nearby, a statue of Billy the Kid keeps watch, staring grudgingly at anyone who spills their glass.
Befitting its state pride, Pecos has an extensive selection of New Mexican wines. More than 80 different blends of regional wine populate the Pecos collection, including the winery's own varietals grown at a pair of Chaves County vineyards. Pecos offers a number of other New Mexico products, too, such as coffee, sauces, and chocolates, as well as beers gathered from in-state breweries.