Kakawa Chocolate House, Santa Fe
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Chimayó in your chocolate in Santa Fe
This unassuming adobe house in Santa Fe is home to one of the world's 'top ten places' to drink chocolate. (Seriously. It ranks up there with anything in Europe or South America.) Walk the few blocks from the city's central Plaza, open the door and inhale the pre-columbian fragrance of the eight or nine 'drinking elixirs' that will be swirling and ready to serve. Free samples will tempt and educate you... My wife lingered over the "Spanish" blend, sipping on a blend of chocolate, floral essence, coconut sugar and spices, while I had their version of "atole," a traditional hearty breakfast drink made with blue corn masa, chocolate, honey, Mexican vanilla, and local chimayó chile pepper. But there's more to cacao here than just drinking; the handmade truffles, caramels and mendiants are arrestingly good! The house-made agave caramels dusted with chile powder (again, from the beloved chimayó peppers from their namesake valley just north of the city) or topped with nuts from the pinyon pines so common in the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo mountains--these are treats with a definite taste-of-place. Sip. Savor. Linger. Marvel.
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