Almost regularly, at least once a week, I think about New Mexico. A couple of years ago, I spent a month there for school, and it was one of the most memorable experiences of my life.
I had always felt drawn to go out West, however I never specifically had any desire to go to New Mexico. But, New Mexico was everything I didn’t know I was needing. It was like being dumped in another world (or the desert), where there was a lot of sand and cacti and green chiles.
I felt uncomfortable, but in a good way. I was going out of my comfort zone from the flat plains, corn fields, and greenery of Ohio to experience a life that I honestly didn’t even know existed. I fell in love.
Before I left, I ran into a family friend who had just returned from New Mexico, and she started talking about how the light played off the rocks and made it so hauntingly beautiful. I thought, yeah okay, they’re literally just rocks. But they’re not. You could admire the beauty of New Mexico for hours on end and still find it to be magical.
I had been in New Mexico for a few weeks before my fiancé came to visit for the weekend. Being a huge fan of Cormac McCarthy, he wanted to make his way up from Albuquerque to Santa Fe to explore. Now, anywhere we go, we have to try the local coffee. In some cities we search and search for a good cup, and in some cities, you just know, they’ve got it.
I believe to this day that Iconik Coffee Roasters is the best coffee in Santa Fe. Nay, probably in New Mexico. Santa Fe is an artistic city, and the art translates into their coffee. If you go to Santa Fe and you don’t try Iconik, you’re missing out.
My rating system for a coffee house begins with getting a standard iced latte, without fuss or fancy. If the drink is bitter, they don’t really care about what they’re serving you. If that espresso is nutty and creamy and sweet, then you know that they know exactly what they’re doing, and they’re putting the effort into making you something extraordinary. This iced latte was just that.
I also believe that the mark of a great coffee shop is their creativity. It takes a lot of skill to go out of bounds while still serving a quality product. Iconik had an Horchata Latte on their menu, and although I liked the thought of it, I was hesitant to get it. My fiancé is more daring than me and was brave enough to order it, and it was so good and so unique that I wanted to go back for seconds to get one for myself.
My friends, if you’re in the Santa Fe area, please go to Iconik Coffee Roasters! I love this little coffee shop and I hope to go back someday when we’re able to return to this special mecca in the desert.