Opera performances start at sundown, but the show begins hours earlier, when hundreds of patrons start to arrive at the theater... some bring tailgate dinners from grocery-store carryout to gourmet catering, some join the preview buffet on the rehearsal grounds. Whatever your dining pleasure, it's all part of opera-going Santa Fe style!
Enjoy dinner, including wine and dessert, at our open-air cantina on the beautifully landscaped rehearsal grounds. Guest speaker, Desiree Mays, offers an informative talk about the evening's opera during the dessert course. Call the box office at 800-280-4654 or purchase online by selecting a preferred date from the June, July or August performance calendar. Cost: $62 per person.
The parking lot opens three hours before curtain time for patrons who enjoy dining on-site with the spectacular scenery and sunset views. Patrons are always welcome to set up folding tables and chairs directly in front of their cars. Picnic tables adjacent to the upper parking lot are also available on a first-come, first-served basis. Limited seating is available at our new Dining Terrace adjacent to the parking lot, which offers food and beverage selections before the performance and at intermissions.
For larger tailgating parties, we have limited reserved spaces available, so be sure to confirm your plans with the box office in advance. For more information 800-280-4654.
Tailgate picnic suppers
Enjoy one of our delicious pre-ordered picnic offerings prepared by Bon Appétit. For a light repast, choose between three Sampler Tailgate Boxes ($17 each). Or select from four full Dinner Tailgate Boxes ($25 each). A $1 handling fee is added to each Sampler or Dinner Box. Seating availability is limited and non-reserved.
Sampler Boxes: Local Cheeses, Country Pate or Mediterranean (Vegan)
Dinner Boxes: Salmon, Spinach Tart (Vegetarian), Flank Steak or Chicken Breast
All selections are chilled.
2015 Tailgate Picnic Menu
Tailgate picnics need to be ordered at least 48 hours in advance and will be available for pick-up (starting 2 hours before and up to 30 minutes before performance time) at Bon Appétit's kiosk in the parking area adjacent to the entrance of the theater.
Purchase online by selecting a preferred date from our July or August performance calendar or call 800-280-4654, 9 am to 5 pm Mountain Time.
Learn more about the Opera's tailgating and parking area policies.
Special Dining Events
A place for you at our table awaits! To learn more or purchase tickets for Opening Weekend Celebration events, Opening Night Dinners, the annual Holiday Party and other select donor events, as well as Guild activities, view the calendar to see all events by date preference.
Desserts, snacks, wine, mixed drinks and non-alcoholic beverages are available for purchase at the bars located throughout the Opera before the performance and at intermissions. Our new Dining Kiosk adjacent to the parking lot offers a wider selection of food and beverages, including espresso, cappuccinos and lattes.