AP NEWS

Santa Fe restaurateurs closing eatery, but plan to open 4 more

May 2, 2019

Get out your scorecards.

Santa Fe restaurateurs Jennifer and Jimmy Day have a whirlwind of openings and closings in the coming days, weeks and next year, starting with the closing Saturday of Maize on Johnson Street.

Maize opened in September 2017 as a Day fine-dining entry, but lease issues are ending its tenure. Jennifer Day said Maize will return, potentially around June 2020, in a location yet to be determined. The Maize bar remains open until May 15.

“I’m looking for a property I can buy,” she said.

The Days on Tuesday likely will open Jimmy D’s, a family diner at Garrett’s Desert Inn, 311 Old Santa Fe Trail, and a couple of days later expect to open The Map Room bar across the lobby from Jimmy D’s.

Maize’s return will be delayed as the Days open Jimmy D’s, get the former State Capital Kitchen space ready for an Asian restaurant and revive the Bobcat Bite on Old Las Vegas Highway, which closed in 2013. The Days, as NM Fine Dining LLC, also own Trattoria A Mano and Bouche Bistro, fine-dining restaurants in downtown Santa Fe.

Trattoria A Mano, which was closed Sundays and Mondays, is now open seven days a week. Lunch will be added in June, Jennifer Day said.

The Days bought the State Capital Kitchen building at 500 Sandoval St., originally a Pizza Hut, and are trying for a mid-June opening of Lucky Goat, a casual Asian place with bento boxes, noodle bowls and rice bowls.

Jennifer Day plans to put pizza art on the walls of Lucky Goat as a nod to the site’s Pizza Hut origins. Lucky Goat will be open seven days a week.

The Lucky Goat name stems from the Days’ ranching days in Texas, where they imported South African Boer goat embryos from a New Zealand breeder. They expected to net $5,000 per goat at the first sale of 103 goats. Instead, the first goat sold for $20,000, the high sale was $50,000, and rather than a $500,000 total, the Days netted $2.5 million.

“A cowboy with $2.5 million of goats,” Jennifer Day said.

She estimated a September reopening of the Bobcat Bite, a property the couple acquired in 2017 along with the surrounding 100 acres.

“Jennifer Day has the grill,” she said.

The renewed Bobcat Bite might have a new kitchen, but the original grill from 1953 will be back in service, Jennifer Day said.

The Days swiftly began assembling their restaurant empire in 2017, acquiring Bouche Bistro, opening Maize and seven weeks later Trattoria A Mano.

Jennifer Day called 2018 “a boring year” because they opened no restaurants.