One of the worst things about this COVID-19 pandemic is the inescapable truth that some Santa Fe businesses are just plain going to close. It isn't fair, it isn't fun and the effects of such closures will surely ripple out into the community in ways we can't even begin to see yet, not least of which will be the loss of employment.
And though there's no telling what the fallout will look like in the coming weeks and months, a pair of Santa Fe dining and drinking options now plans to close its doors permanently this month. That's right—say goodbye to Eloisa and Bar Alto, both part of the Drury Plaza Hotel.
In an email to SFR, Eloisa's director of food and beverage operations, F. Rick Pedram, says, "I am confirming that Eloisa Operations (to include Eloisa Restaurant, Bar Alto and Eloisa catering) is now officially closed indefinitely. The entire staff have been notified that they will not be called back to work when/if the orders are lifted."
Eloisa, which opened in 2015, immediately became the notorious stomping grounds of chef John Rivera Sedlar, a New Mexico native who named the restaurant after his grandmother, a fabled cook herself.
"Santa Fe has always been a natural place for me to open a restaurant," Sedlar told The New York Times that first year, and his innovative takes on cuisine—including a rather robust and creative taco menu—wowed former SFR food columnist Zibby Wilder just last year. Sedlar retired from Eloisa at the beginning of the year, leaving it in the hands of chef Mario Mendoza-Martinez, but not before taking part in one of SFR's Secret Brunch events, pictured below.
Bar Alto, meanwhile, had become synonymous with rooftop summertime craft cocktails, food and live music poolside. The watering hole's concise yet upscale take on its bar menu was a breath of fresh air amongst a sea of burgers and fries, and it wasn't uncommon to find film festival afterparties or government workers holding court and hobnobbing amongst locals and visitors alike.
A spokeswoman for Drury Plaza Hotel provided SFR with the following statement via email: "The Drury Plaza Hotel in Santa Fe is open; however, its restaurant, Eloisa, has been permanently closed."
There's no word on how many jobs this news accounts for, so here's a reminder to Santa Feans to support the restaurants and businesses they'd like to see survive this mess. Find a growing list of restaurants open for pickup or carry out here.