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Nature’s Plate Santa Fe Winner Announced

The Nature Conservancy Awards Country’s Best Green Restaurants

Santa Fe | October 17, 2013

The Nature Conservancy launched a contest in September asking foodies in Santa Fe and across the country to nominate their favorite green restaurants for Nature’s Plate, a second annual people’s choice contest to find consumers’ top green restaurants. Since October 1, voters have been submitting their choice for which sustainable, organic or farm-to-table restaurant would take home the 2013 award, and today the winners were announced. 

The winner in Santa Fe is Vinaigrette, a chic, green bistro that raises the "salad bar" with entrée salads. Most of the restaurant's organic produce comes from owner Erin Wade's farm, harvested within hours of arriving at Vinaigrette's kitchen.  

“We work really hard to be green in everything we do—from sourcing ingredients (many from our own farm) and using eco-friendly products to composting, reusing and/or recycling our waste to using energy efficient kitchen equipment and safe chemicals and paints,” says Erin Wade, owner. “It just feels better to know that at Vinaigrette you are taking part in something that is not only good for you, but good for the planet as well. We are honored our incredible customers have acknowledged us for all of our efforts!” 

The Nature Conservancy works with food producers around the world and brings together traditionally unexpected partners in the name of healthy food and a healthy environment, finding solutions that are good for business, people and nature. 

Whether you're a vegan, vegetarian, or a meat-eater, it's a good bet the healthiest and tastiest food on your table came from nature. 

The year-round Santa Fe Farmers' Market supports the local food scene and is one of the most widely recognized markets in the U.S. More than 150 active vendors sell foods, from chiles to honey, grown in northern New Mexico. Plus, two of New Mexico’s rivers – the Gila and San Juan – are part of the larger Colorado River basin which irrigates crops for food we eat, including 90-percent of the winter lettuce. 

While this contest is focused on restaurants, it’s only the start of a conversation about food, conservation and The Nature Conservancy’s work with farmers and ranchers. You can also learn more about what makes a restaurant green and be sure to check in next year for the 2014 Nature’s Plate Award Contest.  The Nature Conservancy does not endorse, recommend, or certify any restaurant as being green or sustainable.  

This state-by-state and city-by-city contest took place in: California (Los Angeles and San Francisco) Colorado, Connecticut, Florida (Miami), Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois (Chicago), Massachusetts (Boston), Minnesota (Minneapolis & St. Paul), New Jersey, New Mexico (Albuquerque and Santa Fe), New York (NYC & Finger Lakes/Central Western), North Carolina (Durham), Ohio (Cleveland), Oregon, Pennsylvania (Philadelphia), Virginia (Charlottesville) and Washington DC.

The Nature Conservancy is a leading conservation organization working around the world to conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends. The Conservancy and its more than 1 million members have protected nearly 120 million acres worldwide. Visit The Nature Conservancy on the Web at

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Tracey Stone

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