Albuquerque, the Hot Air Balloon Capital of the World! This one was a business trip, but still lovely. Really enjoyed the weather – I was there in June, and even though it was 90 degrees, thanks to the dry air it felt more like low 70s. It was a whirlwind trip of several editorial meetings, obligatory social events, a ghost tour, a trip to the zoo, two semi-celebrity sightings, and a car accident. Oh, yes, a car accident: this car totally slammed into our rental at a red light (while we're heading for the airport to fly home, no less). Luckily not a soul was seriously hurt, only a few bruises from those in our car. And amazingly, we still made our flight! By two whole minutes!
The green chiles in everything? Yum. When I got back to the hotel late one evening and had to order room service for dinner, I ordered the green chile tortilla soup. It was thick and filling and hot hot hot.
We ate at a few authentic New Mexican restaurants when taking clients out. The Church Street Café in Old Town was amazing, big fat chile rellenos and homemade tamales. Green chile salsa was smothered on EVERYTHING, and they made sure every plate had a healthy portion of rice included (much needed). The margaritas were also a lovely heat-killer :) Plus the restaurant structure itself is pretty cool - supposedly haunted by a ghost named "Sarah", it was once a residential home and was built during the founding of Albuquerque, in 1706.
We also had a few quick lunches at this place across from the main UNM campus, called The Frontier. Best cinnamon rolls I've ever had, you MUST try this place if you find yourself in Albuquerque! And for being a college hangout, The Frontier has great food - their tortillas are made from scratch at the restaurant, and believe me, you can tell. Mmm.
By the end of the trip, I came to the conclusion that I adore green chiles. Granted, my (dry, chapped) lips regularly ballooned up to the size of Angelina Jolie's while I was there from the heat of said chiles, but it was oh so well worth it. I'd go back to Albuquerque just for the food, man.