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Rattlesnake Stew
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Table Talk

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Table Talk

Dos Baristas, the quintessential coffee shop at the corner of Texas and Yankie Streets in Silver City, closed suddenly last month. Greg Bonds and Maryann Marlar, owners of Vicki's Eatery, will be opening a new coffeehouse in the storied Silver City caffeine fixture and gathering place, first run for over 10 years as Jacqueline Shaw's A.I.R. Coffee. Shaw sold off the coffeehouse to Ruthann Poppe around two years ago, and the Bayard-based coffee roasting business to Louis Baum a year ago. (Baum is now selling his A.I.R. in-house roasted java by the pound through Javalina's at Broadway and Bullard.) Bonds says he's in the process of purchasing new equipment and nailing down other details. He says, "It's going to be great to be there, right across from the restaurant. There's a world of possibilities." He hopes to open later this month.

Bob Brockhausen is looking to sell his Silver City Brewing Company near the corner of Bullard and College streets. The beer aspect of the business is going great — the part of the business he enjoys most, in fact — but Brockhausen says he has time to brew only at night and odd hours. Food service, which makes the place profitable, takes too much of his time. "I love brewing beer, but I don't love the food service industry," he says. "It's been a great run, but it's time for me to get out. It's been a big success and now someone can take (the business) further." Brockhausen loves Silver City and has no plans to leave. In his perfect world, somebody who wants to run a restaurant will buy the place and hire him to brew fantastic local microbrews.

Spaghetti Western chef-owner Jake Politte has added some radical new ethnic choices to his menu and opened his restaurant on Texas Street in Silver City for an additional evening. Dinners are family-style, four-course, price-fixe affairs from appetizers through dessert, with Thursday nights featuring world cuisine, particularly Asian-Thai. Politte has been offering Asian dishes at lunch to positive acclaim from the clientele. Saturday continues to be the Italiano fine food showcase. Look for new ethnic options for lunches, too. Lunches: Wed-Sat., Dinner: Thursday and Saturday, by reservation only. 534-4999.

And there are exciting new things happening at Shevek & Mi on Bullard Street in downtown Silver City. Chef-owner Shevek Barnhart says the restaurant has gone to a four-menu-per-year schedule, and has recently added some new items like "Clams al Valencia," with a fire-roasted tomato and green chile sauce, and "Bride's Fingers," a Moroccan street food shrimp dish, among many others. The place is thoroughly committed to its Mediterranean motif, not only on the menu, but with ethnic music and new place settings. Wednesday-night wine tastings "for our most special customers" are coming in October, says Barnhart — by invitation only. If you haven't been a regular, it's time to schmooze-up!

Mr. Bill's In and Out Burger has opened on El Paseo in Las Cruces. "Mr. Bill," himself, owner Bill Robertson, moved to the area just a few months ago from Seattle, where he had operated four successful Mr. Bill's restaurants and two Hot Rod Burgers for over 15 years. Robertson sold the Northwest restaurants, mostly to his long-tenured employees, traveled around the world and "went fishin' for about a year," then settled in Las Cruces on a friend's say-so. The name says it all: good burgers, quick! 525-4220.

Taste of Home, a restaurant featuring sandwiches and baked goods, has opened at 1030 El Paseo near K-Mart in Las Cruces. Sick and tired of shoveling snow, owner Debbie Hansen moved to the area in late April from upper Michigan. This is Hansen's first time owning a restaurant, but she has more than 30 years of experience in the biz. Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. 526-9588.

If you're looking for the Mountain Mudd Espresso kiosk, head on over to Telshor Blvd. Owner Kathy Salopek, who operates two other Mudd outlets — one at 580 S. Valley Dr., and one at 2525 N. Main St. in Las Cruces — moved her Lohman Avenue coffee hut to Telshor, and all is up and running at the cheerful little white building with the peaked green roof.

Want a bagel with your Joe? Durango Bagel has moved to a new location at 1405 S. Solano, most recently occupied by the defunct Burger and Fry Company.

It's a twister, Auntie Em! Well, not anymore, actually. Twisters, a burger and burrito place on Telshor just a few blocks south of the mall in Las Cruces, has spun off into the sunset.

— Donna Clayton Lawder


We're always looking for news on the food scene! Email donna@desertexposure.com.