Rio Chama Gourmet Wine Pairing with Chef Jerry Dakan and Vivac Winery
About the trip
A trip down one of the world’s great summer wilderness rivers combined with artisan meals straight from Northern New Mexico farms. Four courses prepared each evening by award winning chefs. Each course will be paired with the award winning wines from Vivac Winery. This is one of our most sought after trips each year and not to be missed!
- 31 miles through the Wild and Scenic Rio Chama Wilderness
- Four course dinners prepared by world class chefs
- Each dinner course paired and presented by award winning wine makers
- A variety of crafts available to best suit your group
This trip meets at Bode’s General Store, an iconic landmark in Northern New Mexico. Bode’s has offered safe parking for Rio Chama rafters for decades. Bode’s is in the heart of the artists village of Abiquiu, NM which is a mere 1 hour drive from Santa Fe and 1.25 hour drive from Taos. Plan on arriving early to enjoy their famous breakfast burritos and grab any last minute items you may be missing including beer and drinks.
For directions to Bode’s General Store click here!
Do I need to know how to swim?
It is recommended but not mandatory that all our guests know how to swim. All guests are given Type V, US Coast Guard approved flotation devices (lifejackets) that are designed to float you on your back, nice and high in the water. For all our class 3 and above sections on the Rio Grande, you will also be issued a helmet.
What do I need to wear?
We have packing lists for you to review for each of our different trip types. Remember that the weather changes dramatically throughout the New Mexico rafting season. It can be significantly colder during March-May we encourage our guests to always be prepared.
What if it’s my first time, do I need experience?
There is no experience required for any of our river trips. However, we encourage experience for our more difficult, Taos Box and Razorblades trips. Please feel free to call us with any concerns or questions about appropriate trips for your group.
Can I bring my dog?
Unfortunately, we cannot bring our furry friends on our river trips. We ask that you leave your pets at home before heading to our headquarters.
Can I leave my dog with you?
We do not have a secure area to keep your dog at our headquarters. Moreover, the temperatures get extremely hot during our season, because of this, you will NOT be able to leave your pets in your car. We ask that you leave your pets at home before heading to our headquarters.
WHAT TO EXPECT
Join us on the Rio Chama for the most scenic multiple day river trip in New Mexico. The Rio Chama, a major tributary of the Rio Grande, in Northern New Mexico, flows through a multi-colored sandstone canyon whose walls grow to 1,500 feet. This trip is a unique and amazing way to experience the world famous Rio Chama, experience remarkable artisan meals featuring food and wine from the Northern New Mexico region, and support local farming. The river runs through areas that are designated as wilderness or as wilderness study areas.
We begin the 33 mile river trip outside of the alpine town of Chama, NM and float down into a stunning and colorful sandstone and limestone canyon finishing up near the renowned artist village of Abiquiu. The upper reaches of the river are well known for the fantastic trout fishing and gorgeous pine trees lining the banks of the river. This stretch of river hides many treasures within the high reaching walls from hot springs to homesteads to ancient dinosaur tracks. We will spend two nights at camps that are right on the river’s edge and backed up by excellent opportunities for hiking and the exploration of numerous side canyons and vistas.
Each night we will experience a gourmet 4-course meal prepared by the one and only, Chef Jerry Dakan of Santa Fe . Chef Dakan is an acclaimed chef with experience in some of the most well known culinary destinations in the country. He now calls Santa Fe his home where is the lead faculty at the Santa Fe Community College Culinary School. The dinners will be paired with the wines of Vivac Winery. In November of 1998 Jesse and Chris embarked on a new mission “to make the best wine possible and have a good time doing it!” This meant professionally crafted, world-ranked, dry red wines, a first for New Mexico and are now the Highest Rated Reds in New Mexico’s History (Wine Enthusiast Magazine ratings)! Focused on complex reds, the Professional at Vivac Winery have a commitment to excellence. Using only French oak barriques and state of the art stainless steel tanks, brothers Chris and Jesse Padberg lovingly create their wines. Fresh and Young, edgy and sophisticated, Vivac offers you something out of the ordinary!
The trip includes:
- World-Class guides leading trips around the globe
- All river equipment
- All camping gear (including ultra-comfortable, inflatable sleeping pads)
- A rare peak into the beautiful canyon’s Georgia O’Keefe made famous years ago
- All meals beginning with lunch on day one and ending with lunch on day 3, including gourmet 4-course Farm to Fork dinners prepared by Chef Jerry Dakan
- Wine pairings from Northern New Mexico’s award winning Vivac Winery