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About Us : Our Chefs

Michelle Chavez

Michelle 150W
Michelle Chavez brings 26 years of experience to the stoves of the Santa Fe School of Cooking. Her experience began in the San Francisco Bay Area at the age of 14 rolling pasta for a family friend. She eventually rose to the position of Sous Chef in an upscale Northern Italian Ristorante at the age of 21.

In 1996, she returned to her hometown of El Paso, TX and became Executive Chef of Café Central for 7 years. In 2003, she was the Chef De Cuisine for the Professional Golf Association Champions Dinner in Rochester, NY and has cooked for numerous notables including presidents George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, Al Gore and Vicente Fox of Mexico. She moved to Santa Fe in 2003 and co-owns a catering company called Coriander. In her spare time she windsurfs, snow skis, mountain bikes, gardens and mentors young chefs.

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Cooking Classes : Class Descriptions

- $80.00+tax per person.

Do you love chile? Are you curious but unfamiliar? Our Chile Workshops will delight those already familiar with New Mexico's official state vegetable and light the fires of passion for those yet uninitiated. Here in the Land of Enchantment, chile is more than an ingredient; it is the embodiment of a diverse and rich cultural heritage and a distinct Southwestern lifestyle. Participants will explore chile's unique culinary history and discover how to handle them safely and efficiently in the kitchen. This workshop will include an in depth discussion of the various fresh green chile and you will prepare: flour tortillas, green chile sauce, roasted tomatillo & cilantro sauce and green chile, mint & tamarind sauce
Choose between our Red Chile or Green Chile workshop, or you can do them both!

Reserve your space early; this 2-hour class is limited to 16 people.

- $75.00+tax per person. New

Tim Gaiser is an internationally renowned wine expert and lecturer. He is one of 246 individuals worldwide to ever attain the elite Master Sommelier wine title and is the former Director of Education and Education chair for the Court of Master Sommeliers, Americas. He is also an adjunct professor for the Rudd Center for Professional Wine Studies at the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone in Napa Valley.

Join Tim Gaiser, M.S., to learn the deductive tasting method as used by Master Sommeliers. Tim will lead the class through a flight of six wines demonstrating the best way to look at, smell, and taste wine. During the session Tim will also introduce strategies from his own tasting project for improving smell and taste memory. Regardless of your level of tasting expertise—be it novice or professional—you’ll leave the class a better taster with more understanding of what’s in your glass.

Cooking Classes : Demonstration Classes

- $85.00+tax per person.

Their long history of farming, and plant usage qualify Native Americans to be considered as America's first great cooks. Lois Ellen Frank, a James Beard award winning author and PhD in culinary culture, presents a fascinating look into Native American food and culture.   
Trout with herbs and bacon baked in clay, Indian wild rice saute, sauteed rainbow chard, berry crisp. Demonstration Class, 3-hours.

Cooking Classes : Hands-On Classes

- $102.00+tax per person.

The history of the burrito can be traced to the Mesoamerican people of Mexico who used tortillas to wrap foods such as squash, tomatoes, and chile peppers. The Pueblo people of the Southwestern United States also made tortillas as wraps for beans, meat and other indigenous foods of that era.

In our new Burritos! class you will learn to make 3 versions of burritos; 3 Sisters, Burrito Bowl and Machaca, or shredded beef along with Salsa Fresca, Black Bean Tortillas, Cucumber Salsa, Green Chile Sauce and Red Rice.

Cooking Classes : New Classes

- $115.00+tax per person.

Restaurant Martin is the restaurant that Chef Martín Rios and his wife Jennifer envisioned: A comfortable, refined and pleasing atmosphere where local people and Santa Fe visitors can enjoy Chef Rios' award-winning progressive American cuisine. He has a long-standing reputation for his innovative combination of flavors, colors and presentation. Using fresh, local produce and organic meats and poultry, Chef Rios creates cuisine that reflects Southwestern and Asian styles influenced by his classical training in French technique. He has multiple nominations for the Best Chef in the Southwest by the James Beard Foundation.

Paloma is committed to raising the bar for modern food and beverage here in Santa Fe. At Paloma we serve fresh interpretations of Mexican food in a casual, yet chic environment. Our full bar and beverage program is approachable, yet unique. We celebrate the welcoming culture of Mexico and are committed to serving our guests with warm hospitality and genuine enthusiasm. We have a seasonal patio and organic garden to offer al fresco dining and fresh, homegrown vegetables, herbs, and edible garnishes! 401 South Guadalupe Street ( at Montezuma)

Café Sonder In 1947, Greek immigrant, Dan Razatos, opened the famous Plaza Café in downtown Santa Fe where it remains as busy as ever. The new Razatos’ family venture, Café Sonder, located in the Guadalupe District, offers a simple, quality American Dining menu, craft beers and carefully selected wines. If you are a Plaza Café fan you won’t want to miss this iconic Santa Fe family’s newest restaurant!

Sazon Originally from Mexico City, Chef Fernando Olea has been enthralling diners in Santa Fe since 1991 with his unique interpretation of contemporary and traditional Mexican dishes. At Sazon Chef Olea creates sophisticated flavors using Old Mexico’s indigenous and culinary traditions alongside ingredients from around the world. His menu is deliberately small, featuring fresh and locally sourced produce and meats when possible.

Because our wonderful Santa Fe Chefs LOVE to feed you, please reconsider dinner reservations following one of our Restaurant Walking Tours! Tours run 2PM to 5PM and begin at The Santa Fe School of Cooking, 125 N. Guadalupe St.

Important: Please Read!

Due to the popularity of our tours, we strictly adhere to our 48-hour cancellation policy. Please be aware you will be walking approximately 1-1/2 miles at an elevation of 7000 ft.

- $115.00+tax per person.

la boca chef

The Palace The legendary Palace Restaurant and Saloon is a destination for visitors to Santa Fe and a local hotspot. The very talented duo of Jen and Evan Doughty team up with their staff to offer beautifully layered cuisine that highlights every flavor of your dish. Eat in the elegant Grand Dining Room or the saloon with its red, flocked velet wallpapered walls for a meal you will not forget!

Gruet Santa Fe Tasting Room In 1983, the Gruet Family
was traveling through the southwestern part of the US, and while in New Mexico met a group of European winemakers who had successfully planted vineyards in Engle, near the town of Truth or Consequences, 170 miles south of the city of Albuquerque. After hearing of vineyards planted there as early as the 1600s, and learning about the specific climate and soil conditions of the region, the Gruet Family knew they had found what they were looking for. In 1984, Gilbert Gruet – whose Champagne house (Gruet et Fils) has produced fine Champagnes in Bethon, France since 1952 – made the decision to plant an experimental vineyard in Engle, NM. The plantings were exclusively Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes. Two of his four children, Laurent and Nathalie Gruet then relocated to New Mexico to begin their American winemaking adventure.

Anasazi Restaurant Traditional Southwestern cuisine serves as the foundation for the menu of this beautiful restaurant located in the Inn of the Anasazi. Latin influences enrich the time-honored fare and celebrate Santa Fe's vibrant Latin communities. The property welcomes a new Executive Chef, Edgar Beas, who finds inspiration in Santa Fe's rich culinary history as well as seasonal, local ingredients.

IL Piatto During the growing seasons Il Piatto chef/proprietor, Matt Yohalem has the local farmers bring their trucks to the front of Il Piatto early in the morning to provide him with the best selection of the freshest local ingredients available in Santa Fe. Using these ingredients Chef Yoholem will entertain you with the preparation of one of his uniquely delicious regional Italian cuisine. Matt puts on a great show!

Because our wonderful Santa Fe Chefs LOVE to feed you, please reconsider dinner reservations following one of our Restaurant Walking Tours! Tours run 2PM to 5PM and begin at The Santa Fe School of Cooking, 125 N. Guadalupe St.

Important: Please Read!

Due to the popularity of our tours, we strictly adhere to our 48-hour cancellation policy. Please be aware you will be walking approximately 1-1/2 miles at an elevation of 7000 ft.

Culinary Tours : New Mexico Culture & Cuisine Tour

- $1895+tax per person. New

August 21-25, 2017
Hosted by The Santa Fe School of Cooking

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Santa Fe has made a big name for itself in the culinary scene. For centuries before Santa Fe was even considered a city, there was an interesting and unique food culture cultivated by the Native American peoples. The trinity of cultures, Native American, Spanish and Anglo, that assembled here give our city the foundation for her exquisite food offerings. Our local chefs embrace the traditions of the ancients and draw off their individual backgrounds to produce one of the most diverse and exciting ‘food scenes’ in North America. This four day event will explore the Native traditions and weave its way through the cultural influences of the region. You will explore the contributions of Georgia O’Keeffe and meet some Santa Fe’s top chefs in the contemporary food scene.

Highlights of this upcoming trip include:

  • Picking produce from one of our famous, fun local farmers north of Santa Fe
  • Visiting a New Mexican winery
  • Outdoor cooking class at a beautiful estate in Chimayo
  • Tour of Puye cliffs
  • Native dancers
  • Bread baking in an horno
  • Shopping/restaurant tour through downtown Santa Fe, where you will meet top chefs, local food artisans and farmers
  • Dinner out at one of our favorite restaurants where the chef will host us!
  • Daily cooking classes, including one taught by James Beard award winning cookbook author, Lois Ellen Frank and cookbook author, Margaret Wood who wrote A Painter’s Kitchen

Monday, August 21

This tour officially kicks off at 5:30 PM with a welcome reception at the Santa Fe School of Cooking hosted by Nicole Curtis Ammerman and her delightful and dedicated staff. After getting acquainted, we’re off to one of the city’s legendary restaurants for a sumptuous dinner. Let the festivities begin!

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Tuesday, August 22

We will meet at the Santa Fe Farmers Market at 8:30 AM under the water tower, where we will explore the seasonal ingredients, meet some farmers and enjoy the hub of activity during the markets peak season. We can expect to find chile, corn, peaches and apples among many other tasty treats. We will continue on through downtown Santa Fe where we will visit two restaurants and have private sessions with the chef/owners, tour their property and taste some of their food. We will also visit some culinary hot spots such as a fabulous spice shop and an astisan cheese shop. In the afternoon, we will have a cooking class celebrating the foods of New Mexico at SFSC. The evening is yours to explore the fantastic restaurants that Santa Fe is famous for or if you are too full, we will sent you off for some of Santa Fe’s nightlife!

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Wednesday, August 23

The touring portion of our jaunt gets underway with a trip to the northern New Mexico countryside. Meet at SFSC at 8:00, where we will load up and head out to the farm of Matt Romero. Matt Romero spent many years as an executive chef before giving it up to start farming eight years ago. He started by caretaking a ten-acre farm before getting access to his uncle’s 3-acre tract, a tractor and tools. Matt raises chili, tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant, cucumbers, squash, cabbages, herbs and many other types of produce on his small farms. We will pick our own produce to take with us to our next stop. Next up is a stop to the beautiful, Rancho Manzana in the heart of Chimayo. It was the Ortega family residence and housed the original post office and mercantile store, serving the Chimayo community until the 1950's. Great care has been taken in the on-going restoration process, insuring a relaxing, hospitable retreat. One of the SFSC chefs will be waiting for our arrival where we will use the produce we picked earlier to create our own lunch which will be enjoyed in the glorious gardens of Rancho Manzana. The last stop on the tour is at Estrella del Norte vineyard. This is located in Nambe in a lovely oasis of fruit trees, grape vines and art. We will meet the owners and have a sampling of some of their favorite wines. Once again, the evening is yours to explore the town!

Thursday, August 24

This is another day of exploration as we head out to the ancient ancestral home of the Santa Clara pueblo people atop the breathtaking Pajarito Plateeau, where we will explore the incredible beauty and cultural signigicance of the Puye Cliff Dwellings, ‘a place between earth & sky’. Journey back in time approximately two thousand years and you will find the ancestors of Santa Clara Pueblo thrivig at Puye. Using material found at this site, they sculpted their homes from the soft volcanic rock. We will have a guided tour of these cliff dwellings. We will also help prepare the horno and learn the technique of baking bread in these ovens. The final part of the adventure are native dances from a Santa Clara family. They will dance and share stories of the importance of this tradition to their family. We will head back to Santa Fe and have a few hours of rest before returning to SFSC for a special hands-on Native cooking class with Lois Ellen Frank. Their long history of farming, and plant usage qualify Native Americans to be considered as America's first great cooks. Lois Ellen Frank, a James Beard award winning author and PhD in culinary culture, presents a fascinating look into Native American food and culture. The day will end with the group enjoying the Native feast that they prepared.

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Friday, August 25

Our last morning together will be unforgettable as we explore the influence that Georgia O’Keeffe played in New Mexico art and food. Join The Santa Fe School of Cooking, and the O'Keeffe Museum, to discover and explore some of Georgia O'Keeffe's ideas about food and cooking. One of our chefs will guide you through some of Ms. O'Keeffe's recipes featured in the book, A Painters Kitchen: Recipes from the Kitchen of Georgia O'Keeffe by Margaret Wood. Ms. O'Keeffe had a unique perspective on food for the time, really appreciating simple foods that were in season and grown and handled with care. Margaret will also be on hand to share personal stories and insights to into Georgia O'Keeffe's life, perspective on food and of course art, as she was her assistant for many years. This class will weave the recipes and their context to create the texture of Ms. O'Keeffe. After our lunch together we will say our goodbyes.

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This tour is offered at $1895 plus tax per person. It includes all cooking classes and events at The Santa Fe School of Cooking, dinner out on the first night, our field trips ad entry fees and transportation on our touring days. Not included is transportation to Santa Fe and accommodations while in Santa Fe.

Itinerary or Program Modifications: The itineraries listed are subject to modification and change by The Santa Fe School of Cooking.


Are the Restaurant Walking Tours offered when the weather is bad?

The Walking Tours run year round, regardless of what the weather is like. Be prepared for rain, wind, snow, but most likely, a beautiful sunny day (then wear sunscreen!).

On-line Market : Best Sellers

La Chamba Black Clay Pottery

La Chamba Black Clay Pottery

The La Chamba micacious clay cookware is a unique serving and cooking line that is oven, stove top, and microwave safe. Great for succulent Carne Adovada, Green Chile Stew, Roast Pork Loin with Red Chile Peanut Mole, or Posole, micaceous clay is as functional as it is lovely to serve in. We stock a large variety of La Chamba ceramic cookware in house, so call for availability if you don't see what you are looking for.

Each piece is hand made and may vary; dimensions are approximate.

To ensure that you receive large pieces of our beautiful La Chamba pottery undamaged we take extra measures to prepare each piece for shipping. Each is separately double-boxed, encased in bubble wrap, and tightly packed with newspaper and/or packing peanuts. To cover the cost of this extra handling an additional fee of $15.75 will be charged for each shipped piece of La Chamba costing more than $50.00. There are no refunds or replacements for Chamba pieces after 60 days, new or used.
PD - Oval Shallow Serving Dish 14" x 15 ½" - $78.00
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RD - Relish Dish 5 ¾" x 11 ½" - $35.00
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Alligator Juniper Cutting Boards

Alligator Juniper Cutting Boards

Truly unique, heavy duty cutting boards from southern New Mexico. Not only are these fantastic and functional, but the one-of-a-kind, rustic appearance is attractive for use as a serving platter as well. Shape and color varies for each board. Approximate size 14" x 16", weighing 3 to 5 pounds.

Our exquisite Alligator Juniper boards are heavy and require special handling. To cover this additional handling a $10 fee will be added to all orders that include these cutting boards to accommodate for oversize boxes.
1152 - aprox. 16" x 18" - $88.00 Choose Quantity:

Alligator Juniper Cutting Boards Block oil 93 - Block oil - $13.00 Food grade mineral oil perfect for preserving you cutting boards. Choose Quantity:

On-line Market : Cookbooks

Additional Cookbooks

555 - Local Flavors by Deborah Madison - $39.95 Taking readers along exploring farmer’s markets across the country, sharing stories, recipes, and dozens of market-inspired menus. 98 - The Feast of Santa Fe by Huntley Dent - $25.95 Much more than an ordinary cookbook…an artful blend of history, culture and tradition. 228 - The Great Margarita Book by Al Lucero - $15.95 Offering over 85 of Al Lucero’s( Maria’s Restaurant in Santa Fe) special formulas. Along with profiles of over 75 premium tequilas. 3 - Tamales 101 by Alice Guadalupe Tapp - $19.95 A great beginner’s guide to making traditional tamales. 82 - Seasons of Santa Fe by Kitchen Angels of Santa Fe - $19.95 A delightful concept in a cookbook that embodies Santa Fe style and hospitality in food form. 477 - Taste of Enchantment by Junior League of Albuquerque, New Mexico - $22.95 The latest cookbook coming from the Junior League of Albuquerque. 9 - Simply Simpatico by Junior League of Albuquerque, New Mexico - $17.95 Sample the intriguing cuisine of New Mexico, a unique blend of Indian, Spanish, Mexican and Anglo cultures which flourish under our brilliant turquoise skies. 895 - Southwest Flavor by Adela Amador - $10.95 Adela Amador shares over 70 of her favorite recipes, ranging from the traditional enchiladas, tamales and posole to new discoveries like paella. 632 - The Whole Chile Pepper Book by Dave DeWitt and Nancy Gerlach - $22.95 Spicy-food authorities Dave DeWitt and Nancy Gerlach document the chile pepper’s history and lore and provide over 180 recipes, re-creating Aztec and Mayan cuisines, Caribbean and Latin American dishes, and food of the American Southwest. 167 - Red Chile Bible by Kathleen Hansen and Audrey Jenkins - $12.95 Offering recipes from the very traditional to the very contemporary, from down-home rustic to elegant and from comfortably mellow to fiery hot. 1771 - The Chile Chronicles by Carmella Padilla - $29.95 This book brings to life the chile culture of New Mexico-its history, its traditions, its people. 1051 - Frida's Fiestas by Guadalupe Rivera and Marie-Pierre Colle - $35.00 Recipes and reminiscences of life with Frida Kahlo. 1854 - New Mexico Cooking by Clyde Casey - $15.00 Unique, with assertive flavors, bright colors and a sassy taste. 759 - The Food Lover's Companion by Sharon Tyler Herbst - $16.95 The quintessential food reference book…a bible for anyone seriously interested in cooking.

Good Times, Good Grilling

Good Times, Good Grilling

In Good Times, Good Grilling, you will find easy, delicious, fresh and simple recipes for that casual back-yard barbecue you are hosting. 2419 - $24.95
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Cooking with Kids Cookbook

Cooking with Kids Cookbook

New Release - Among recipes from around the world, the book sprinkles in tried-and-true suggestions for what kids can do to help adults prepare and cook–even knives can be used successfully and safely with proper guidance. Ultimately, the cookbook, which has just about every kind of recipe imaginable, from Chinese American Fried Rice to Mediterranean Flatbread to Rainforest Macaroons, includes “everyone in a comfortable way.” Which is exactly what we mean when we say there’s room at the table.” Cooking with Kids is a Santa Fe non-profit bring healthy cooking to Santa Fe’s elementary schools. 2455 - $24.95
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On-line Market : Foods of Spain

Peregrino Spanish Saffron

Often referred to as “the gold of spices,” saffron is intertwined with Spanish cuisine and is an indispensable ingredient in paella and other rices and stews. Its bright floral taste and golden coloring power enhances everything from rice and meat to stews, soups and sauces. 2267 - .035 oz. - $13.95
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Paella Pans

It is the traditional steel paella pan used by Spaniards for centuries. The pan bottom is dimpled in order to spread heat evenly. You can use this paella pan either in the oven, on top of the stove, or on an outdoor grill. As you use your steel paella pan it will become seasoned: changing color and absorbing more flavors as you continue to cook with it. After each use, treat the pan as you would any steel or cast iron pan: wash it by hand, then season it with a light film of oil to retard rust. Should any rust appear, merely wipe it off. These paella pans are made by a family in Valencia with over 50 years of experience in producing the finest cookware for paella.
Seasoning tip: If you coat the pan with olive oil and place it in a 350 F oven for two hours the process will help prevent rust. Safe for use with induction cooktops.
2253 - 10" Serves 2 - $26.00
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2254 - 13" Serves 4 - $29.00
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2255 - 17" Serves 8 - $38.00
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On-line Market : Gift Baskets



A truly unique gift to give! This assortment includes our famous black clay Colombian pottery. Included are: Authentic New Mexican Red Chile Powder, Mexican oregano, cumin seed and a chile oven mitt. And of course you can’t make enchiladas without a cookbook. All black clay pieces are handmade and one-of-a-kind and are approximately 12”x10”. 323 - $155.00
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On-line Market : Sensational Snacks

Way Out West

Way Out West

Way Out West Cookies, the taste of past and present New Mexico. These cookies are sure to remind you of the Land of Enchantment
380 - Wedding Cookies - $9.50
These traditional wedding cookies are steeped in New Mexican history. Choose Quantity:

365 - Bizco Bites - $9.50
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Private Events : Corporate Team Building


All of our programs are custom designed. We work with you to design a session based on the specific needs of your team.

A typical Cookin' Up Change program starts with a light breakfast and morning workshops. After lunch your team moves into the kitchen to prepare a gourmet dinner. During the meal we enjoy one another's company, debrief the day, and celebrate the team's accomplishments.

The ideal group size is from 8 to 28 people.

Light Teambuilding is the perfect addition to your corporate meetings planned in Santa Fe. Spend a half-day session with us and get your group working, laughing, and talking together while producing a traditional southwestern meal!

The Team Cooking Experience can be a one or two day event. We hone team skills to enhance communication, collaboration, and effectiveness. Once in the kitchen, the teams use these tools to cook a gourmet meal.

The Santa Fe Scavenger Hunt is a great lead-in to the Team Cooking Experience. The team will visit and learn about Santa Fe while gathering crucial resources for creating a gourmet meal later in the day. The Scavenger Hunt focuses on team planning, effective use of resources, leadership, and recognition of team and individual accomplishments.

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Become a Southwest Superstar

New Mexico’s signature cuisine is on every foodie’s radar, and the Santa Fe School of Cooking teaches you all you need to know! From traditional dishes steeped in history to cutting-edge southwestern fare, our classes cook up fun with the flavors. And every class ends with a feast!

Join Us

Only-in-New_Mexico Culture & Cuisine Tour

Since 1989, the Santa Fe School of Cooking has been the Southwest’s go-to source for a bounty of creative classes that share the history and traditions of New Mexico’s unique food culture. Our exciting five-day August 2016 Culture and Cuisine Tour the ultimate in authentic culinary adventure!

Discover New Mexico
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