During the Manhattan Project, Oppenheimer and his team of scientists used to come down from The Hill to dance, drink, and decompress at the La Fonda on the Plaza in Santa Fe, New Mexico. It’s only fitting that the hotel’s mixologist shares this Oppenheimer-inspired drink that is perfect for Oscar night. Plus, enjoy the Big Blend Radio podcast that was recorded onsite (2019) at the La Fonda with Ed Pulsifer who shares the fascinating history of this Grande dame of southwestern hospitality, especially the roles both Fred Harvey and architect Mary Colter played in designing and boosting cultural tourism for the hotel, Santa Fe, and across the West.


Makes one cocktail:



1 ½ oz. vodka

1 ½ oz. VSOP cognac

1 tsp medium Amontillado sherry

4 ½ oz. chilled Champagne or sparkling wine



Add the vodka, Cognac, and sherry to a mixing glass filled with ice and stir. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and top with champagne.


The only hotel situated right on the Plaza, and on the historic Santa Fe Trail and Route 66 ‘The Mother Road,’ the award-winning La Fonda is a destination unto itself. Casual elegance exudes from every corner with over 1000 original art pieces and a history that spans over 400 years, plus, a fine selection of facilities and amenities that include top-notch dining and entertainment venues, beautiful wedding and event spaces, spa and wellness services, boutique shopping, art and history tours, valet parking, and more. Located in the heart of La Fonda, the La Plazuela Restaurant was built in the 1920s and is surrounded by hand-painted windows. From chile rellenos to carne asada, fajitas, and Hatch green chile burgers, the menu features contemporary and traditional New Mexico dishes.


Their docent-led tours are popular, and a great way to learn about the rich history and art that has made La Fonda’s story and experience so distinct. The tours are free for hotel guests and non-guests alike, and well worth the time. You’ll hear how it sits on the site of the very first Inn that was built back when the city was originally founded in 1607. After a few more changes, in 1922 it was rebuilt with architects/designers Mary Elizabeth Jane Colter and John Gaw Meem in charge. In 1925 it was purchased by the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway and leased to Fred Harvey who spearheaded the world of cultural tourism. At La Fonda, comfort is king and the experience reigns supreme!




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