Tim's Stray Dog Cantina
Tim's is located in the Taos Ski Valley about 14 miles northeast of
the Taos Plaza at the end of New Mexico Highway 150. It has an excellent
view of two of the expert slopes at the Ski Valley and during the summer
(and winter, for that matter) has a popular outside deck. The atmosphere
is bright during the day with simple pine furniture, benches and chairs,
the obligatory ESPN TV and miscellaneous plants. A fun touch is the trophies
won by the women's softball team (named the Stray Bitches--what else?).
The menu is primarily Mexican with enchiladas, quesadillas, rellenos,
and the like. These are prepared with either red or green chiles.
The red chile is different, although excellent. After several tastings,
we could not figure out the particular combination of ingredients so we
asked for the recipe. The secret ingredient was a small amount of honey.
Sounds strange, but works well!
Tim Harter, for whom the restaurant is named, died in an avalanche in
February, 1996. His wife Laurie ran the restaurant for a few years after
that and in late 1999 Tim's brother Todd took over the restaurant.
Some popular dishes are:
- Green Chile Cheeseburger. This is a large cheeseburger distinguished
from its common brethren by the addition of a thick layer of chopped green
- Tortilla Soup. This is a tomato-based soup with cheese and tortilla
chips and flavored with a large dollop of Melinda's Habanero sauce.
- Bowl of Green. This is the traditional New Mexican green chile.
Tim's prepares it a little on the smoky side (due to the roasted chiles)
with cheese melted on it. Options are beans, ground beef, and/or chicken.
Tim's seems to save their hottest chiles for the green, so beware.
- Chile Rellenos. Tim's prepares their rellenos by very lightly
breading a whole chile with what appears to be blue corn masa, producing
a very thin crusty coating. If you're used to the typical relleno, which
is more breading than chile, this is a very different, but pleasant experience.
The chiles, like in the green, tend to be on the hot side
- Shrimp Quesadilla. You won't find this on the menu as it is
classified as an appetizer. But the full portion is easily enough for dinner.
Served with guacamole and a hot salsa, this is a very pleasant combination
of cheese, sautéed onions, green chiles, lettuce, tomato and shrimp, all
between two toasted tortillas. A personal favorite!
- Grilled Chicken Salad.
Haven't tried this yet but looks wonderful. Large salad covers with
strips of grilled chicken.
- Breakfast Burrito. A large burrito smothered with red or green
chile and cheese. Inside is beans, scrambled eggs, and bacon. A
great meal for any time of the day.
Tim's features three different brews from a local microbrewery, Eske's.
These are excellent. Tim's also has a full liquor license and a large selection
of other beers.
A special treat is Taos Cow ice cream for dessert.
Prices are low to moderate with typical main dishes less than ten dollars.
Hours are 7am to 10pm during the ski season, 11 to 8 other times.