Santa Fe New Mexico

Jose Aldana with Aldana’s Restaurant in Santa Fe New Mexico

I had the great honor of photographing Jose Aldana, the owner of Aldana’s Restaurant in Santa Fe, New Mexico on May 31, 2014. The restaurant has a family, mom and pop atmosphere and serves Mexican and New Mexican food. The most popular plate comes with a tamal, an enchilada and a sopapilla (fried pastry) covered with red or green chile sauce. The restaurant appeals to Mexicans, Mexican Americans and New Mexicans alike.

Jose is originally from a little town called Jilotepec located in Estado de Mexico, which is a state in central Mexico. As a young man he worked in the fields in Mexico. When he moved to the United States, he started washing dishes, sweeping floors and later began to prepare food. His experience in the restaurant industry let him to start Aldana’s Restaurant with the help of friends and family.

Mr. Aldana has come a long way. He said that he remembers his life in Mexico merely as his “infancia” (childhood). He has spent roughly 22 years in Santa Fe, New Mexico. His life has been mainly shaped by living and working in United States.

Jose Aldana with Aldana's Restaurant in Santa Fe New Mexico

Jose Aldana with Aldana’s Restaurant in Santa Fe New Mexico. May 31, 2014.

Jose Aldana with Aldana's Restaurant in Santa Fe New Mexico

Jose Aldana with Aldana’s Restaurant in Santa Fe New Mexico holds a menu at the main entrance. May 31, 2014.

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Miguel Angel Torres and his wife Evelia Segura with “El Tapatío Tacos y Tortas” in Santa Fe New Mexico

Started in 2009, El Tapatío is a lonchera or “food stand” housed in a truck based in Santa Fe, New Mexico. It’s a small, friendly place with a family atmosphere that serves lunch and breakfast. The founders are Miguel A. Torres who is originally from Aguascalientes and his wife Evelia Segura who is from Guadalajara, Jalisco. Both states are located in central Mexico.

El Tapatío serves tacos, tortas, burritos, campechanas, sincronizadas, enchiladas, menudo and more traditional Mexican snack foods or antojitos. The menudo plate is apparently a big hit at El Tapatío. The Saturday I visited the food stand, there were plenty of customers requesting it. Furthermore, Miguel has a humble sign that he places on the sidewalk to advertise menudo. The sign reads “hoy tenemos rico menudo” in hand written, capital letters.

El Tapatío Tacos y Tortas in Santa Fe New Mexico

Miguel Ángel Torres Galván and his wife Evelia Segura with with El Tapatío Tacos y Tortas in Santa Fe, New Mexico. May 31, 2014.

El Tapatío Tacos y Tortas in Santa Fe New Mexico

Miguel Ángel Torres Galván and his wife Evelia Segura with with El Tapatío Tacos y Tortas in Santa Fe, New Mexico. May 31, 2014.