New restaurant opened by chef who runs taco eatery at Navajo Dam during summer

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AZTEC — A new soup restaurant in Aztec focuses on fresh, unique dishes.

The Soup Station is a seasonal restaurant operating out of the Vanilla Moose ice cream building on West Aztec Boulevard.

The restaurant is open from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and will be open through middle to late March.

Amber Silva, the owner of the Soup Station, said she was driving to Farmington to get ingredients for soup when she saw a sign at the Vanilla Moose announcing it was closing for the winter. Silva called the owners and got permission to use the building for a soup restaurant.

Silva has previously worked as a private chef during the winter and operates Gruvitacos, a New World taco restaurant at Navajo Dam, during the summer. She said starting the Soup Station allowed her to stay in Aztec this winter.

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Her soup and breads are homemade. She said she even makes the stock that she uses in the soup.

"I buy as local as I can," Silva said. 

She said she has some farmers that sell her ingredients, but she also goes to grocery stores.

Each day, she makes two soups and posts the day's menu on Facebook by 10 a.m. One soup is vegetarian, and the other tends to be a more hearty, meat-based soup. She also has gluten-free options for customers.

"America's food basket is really changing," she said.

Silva said there are more food allergies than there have been in the past, which has led to increased numbers of people on a gluten-free diet. In addition, Silva said she knows people who have children who are experimenting with vegetarian diets.

So far, the community has been supportive of the restaurant, she said. Since it opened about a week ago, Silva has gained more than 200 followers on her Facebook page, as well as a small crowd of regular patrons.

"They like that (the soups are) different," she said. "They're not what you usually see."

Hannah Grover covers government for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4652.

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