a first bourdain experience

The Pepper Pot in Hatch, NM

it is no secret that i’m a huge fan of anthony bourdain, cook and travel foodie extraordinaire. his show, no reservations, is one of the only shows on television that i actually watch regularly, and i thoroughly enjoyed reading his books, kitchen confidential, about his experiences coming of age in the underbelly of the restaurant world, and a cook’s tour, a sort of diary-esque travelogue about eating adventures around the world.

so we’ve established that i am a bourdain geek. i freely admit it. [tweetmeme]

but it’s not everyday that one gets a chance to sample some of the food that bourdain himself has tasted or featured on his show. and i am not enough of a geek to seek these places out, necessarily, when travelling. but on bill’s and my recent quick trip down to el paso (for top secret travel writing research purposes, of course), we stopped through the tiny town of hatch, new mexico, a veritable mecca of green chile growers, to eat at the pepper pot, where bourdain stopped during the “u.s. southwest” episode during season 5 of no reservations.

The homemade chips & salsa were tasty enough

the pepper pot was pretty much what i expected – a tasty enough, cozy little new mexican joint in a tiny new mexican town. i ordered the combo plate, which came with two cheese enchiladas, which i got “christmas” with one covered in green chile and one in red, as well as a chile relleno (deep fried green chile pepper), which is purportedly the specialty of the pepper pot, as well as a taco, beans and rice. i was surprised by the fact that the red chile was better than the green, but not terribly surprised that i’ve had better new mexican food in other parts of the state.

so, mr. bourdain, (or his internet-crawling producer cronies, inevitably), if you’re out there, please come back to new mexico so that i can show you what our fine state’s culinary traditions are really about, and take you to some of the best places on offer in the land of enchantment.

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