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FARMINGTON – It’s only been open for two months, but Mama’s Deli on West Broadway in downtown Farmington already has a rush of customers during lunch hours.

“It’s nice to have something downtown,” said Mary Winkley after finishing a Zia sandwich, one of Mama’s Deli’s specialty sandwiches which includes turkey, mozzarella and green chile on a bolillo roll, a shorter, Mexican and Central American version of a French baguette.

“It’s not Mexican food, it’s more American food. Well, maybe it’s more half and half,” said Reyna Martinez, the owner of Mama’s Deli.

Martinez describes her fare, which includes a variety of sandwiches, salads, homemade potato chips and daily soup specials, as the food and recipes she makes for her family at home.

Martinez, who has lived in Farmington with her family for 26 years, but is originally from Chihuahua, Mexico, has never owned or worked at a restaurant before. According to Martinez her decision to open a restaurant came as a total surprise, even to herself.

Martinez said she and her family were looking for a space to open a barbershop in downtown Farmington when they walked into the space previously occupied by The Deli Factory at 412 W. Broadway. Martinez said that her family decided then and there to open a restaurant instead.

“I think it was a part of God’s plan,” Martinez said about her sudden change of career plans.

For two years, Martinez said, they reconstructed the space, opening the resturant's doors in October of 2019.

“We never want to copy the restaurant that was here before,” Martinez said, “Some people say that the restaurant isn’t the same as The Deli Factory, but we’re not trying to do the same thing. We’re trying to do something special.”

“I just think we’re doing something good for the community,” Martinez said regarding the popularity of her restaurant, “I like Farmington. I like my people. I like my community. I know a lot of people don’t like it, but I do.”

Mama’s Deli is located at 421 W. Broadway in Farmington. More information can be found on Mama’s Deli Facebook page.

Sam Ribakoff is a visual journalist for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-333-5283 or via email at sribakoff@daily-times.com.

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