Thousands of tourists visit the town of Chimayo every year. Apart from the historical sites, tourists come to buy Chimayo's special chile powder which many consider one of the best, if not the best, powders around.
“We sell a lot of it. It’s our biggest seller,” says El Potrero Trading Post manager, Nicolas Madrid. Madrid’s customers are willing to pay a hefty $45 per pound for the richly aromatic, respectably hot chile powder, made from ground, sun-dried chimayó peppers, just one of about two dozen or so “native” or “New Mexican landrace” chile peppers endemic to northern New Mexico. That’s roughly six times the cost of your average, mass-produced New Mexican red chile powder. The reason, say locals, has a lot to do with that same, sacred dirt in the neighboring church.
(Image credit: El Potrero Trading Post)