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Brunch O’Clock: Santo

Fry Bread Benedict

Santo {1265 Alpine Avenue, Boulder; 303.442.6100} didn’t need any help climbing the culinary ranks in becoming an obvious go-to for Boulderites seeking an authentic New Mexican dining experience. The menu’s offerings are steeped in chef/owner Hosea Rosenberg’s Taos upbringing. The Heirloom Blue Corn Enchiladas and Navajo Fry Bread are no-brainer options for dinner, and anything from their margarita selection is a major thumbs up. But early risers can find refuge here as well. Of course, we are talking about brunch.

New Mexican Hot Chocolate with and Housemade Bizcochitos

Here, brunch is met with the same care and attention to detail that envelops the entire restaurant, from the big picture initiatives (think partnerships with local purveyors) to the secondary details (check out their heavy-weight, scoop-friendly silverware).

On this menu, diners can find item names that sound familiar but are crafted with New Mexican-inspired ingredients. For example, take the Warm Banana Walnut Bread which is served with apricot-mezcal jam for a hint of New Mexican flare. Or how about a classic hash, with the usual crispy smashed potatoes, peppers, mushrooms, sunnyside eggs, and oh, bison tongue smothered in New Mexico-hot green chile?

Mezcal Cured Salmon Tostada

Speaking of green chile, the dishes here are not for the heat-sensitive. Fanatics of authentic New Mexican spice should be thrilled. Others? Your server should be able to point you in a less fiery direction. Don’t even trust the New Mexican Hot Chocolate to soothe your burning palate as it’s laced with a blend of spices for a surprising (but enjoyable!) kick of its own.

So what do we recommend?

We suggest starting light and sweet, with a plate of Housemade Bizcochitos, shortbread-like cookies sprinkled in cinnamon sugar and perfect for dunking in your coffee.

Huevos Diablos

If you’re looking to keep it light, try the Mezcal Cured Salmon Tostada, stacked with avocado crema, winter citrus, pea shoots, fennel-herb salad, and slices of cured salmon all on top of a crunchy tortilla base.

For larger plates, our favorites came down to the Huevos Diablos, featuring two eggs baked into red chile with tomatoes, calabacitas, tender greens, and mojo verde (very spicy!) and the Fry Bread Benedict, a rendition of the classic Benny, but on top of Navajo-inspired Fry Bread (fluffy and delicious enough to eat alone) with perfectly crisped pork belly (or cured salmon), hollandaise “fuego,” and xmas chile (which is New Mexican culinary slang for both red and green chile).

And once you’ve finished all that, you’ve rightfully earned yourself a post-brunch nap. Happy brunching!

Photos and Story by Peyton Garcia, Content Editor