Salad… it’s what’s for breakfast! Along with a heaping portion of eggs Benedict, savory crepes dripping with bechamel, even paella if you so desire. Where can you get such incomparable fare here in Taos? Unfortunately, until the end of June — you can’t. Gutiz Restaurant has been closed for a remodel since early April.
Last week I sat down with one of the owners, Jennifer Peterson (who also happens to be my boss at the restaurant), to get the skinny on the remodel, what she’s been up to while the restaurant undergoes construction, and most importantly when we can expect to be able to feast on Gaby’s succulent hollandaise once more.
Let’s start with the cold hard facts. Gutiz is expanding because the building needs some serious updating, and we need more tables to accommodate y’all and your voracious appetites. Those of you who have been driving by, salivating over imagined culinary delights, have surely noticed the HUGE addition extending into the parking lot. If you’ve had the chance to pull in and check it out, you’ll have no doubt noticed that the addition off the backside of the building is just as ponderous. After the remodel, Gutiz will be the proud possessor of not one, but two ADA compliant restrooms, increased storage and prep areas in the kitchen, AND a nearly-doubled dining capacity, with almost 30 more seats! There will also be a cozy waiting area where folks can sip and enjoy their coffee while they patiently wait for tables during Sunday brunch.
Now what about the food? As far as the menu goes, Jennifer says we’re sticking with old faithful for breakfast and lunch, with perhaps a couple changes to spice or sweeten things up. That’s right, there’s talk of dessert crepes a brewin’ (but you didn’t hear that from me).
In actuality, Gutiz will still be business as usual; a favorite local hangout but with more room for everybody and shorter lines for the restroom. The biggest change coming out of the remodel is that Gutiz is switching over to cash only. Cash only is a very simple method for keeping Taos dollars in Taos. When Jen sat down and had a hard look at the numbers, the credit card fees were astronomical. Why farm that much money out when it can be put right back into the business? So, Gutiz is making the switch to cash only. And for those who prefer the slim profile of their plastic money wallet — there will be an ATM on site.
With the details out of the way, I asked Jennifer what she’s been up to with all this extra time on her hands. She answered with an ironic giggle saying, “What time?” In fact, I had a hard time keeping a straight face even asking her the question. The minute Gutiz closed, I personally was beset with a million other opportunities with which to fill my “spare time,” and I knew Jen was experiencing the same thing. So, after a brief stint playing music and travelling through Texas, Jen returned home to her booming truffle business, the restaurant expansion trucking full steam ahead, and several music gigs around town. When she does get a spare minute to herself she spends it lusting after a country-style dining room table with matching chairs for sale down in Santa Fe that can accommodate up to ten people and would look fabulous in the new Gutiz dining room addition.
Finally, here is the answer to your number one burning question: Gutiz will reopen sometime in late June. The construction is zooming along on time and according to schedule. We’re all ramping up to have everything in place to ensure our homestyle, family-oriented service continues with our newly-expanded dining capacity. Gaby is taking a well-deserved vacation before she returns to her six-burner stove and starts pumping out Scrambled Egg Towers six days a week like a well-oiled machine. So keep your taste buds honed and your silverware sharp — Gutiz is so excited to see you all again real soon.