Super Bowl bet stirs up chile controversy

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Every year before the Super Bowl, mayors make a friendly wager.

This year, Seattle offered up crab and salmon if the Seahawks lose. If the Broncos lose, Denver will send over green chile.

Isn’t that New Mexico’s thing?

“We’re known for chile,” said Anita Sanchez of Albuquerque. “Green chile, red chile.”

David Gonzales, a server at Monroe’s, said, “Green chile is New Mexican and were very proud of that as New Mexicans.”

You heard it, – green chile is New Mexican.

“Green chile is ours,” Frank Barnett said.

Those are strong words.

So you can imagine what people are thinking now that Denver Mayor Michael Hancock is betting his city’s chiles on the Super Bowl.

“I’ve never heard of chiles growing in Colorado,” Garcia’s Miia Hebert said.

Every time the big game rolls around, the mayors from each city in the contest make a bet.

Seattle’s Ed Murray says he’ll send the mile high city salmon, crab and a bike if the Seahawks lose. Hancock is betting handmade skis and green chile.

“I can guarantee that they will not be as good as our New Mexico chile,” Hebert said.

So, Mayor Hancock, here are few suggestions on what you should send.

“If Denver wants to send them something, why not send them snow,” Barnett said. “They got plenty of that.”

“I would think maybe Rocky Mountain Oysters myself,” Gonzales said.

According to the website Denver Green Chili, Colorado grows some green chile in Brighton and Pueblo. But the site also has pictures recognizing New Mexico on its homepage.

“I’m a little torn because I really like Denver, but it is kind of stealing our thunder,” Sanchez said.

It’s that thunder that restaurants all across the state serve up every day.

And while the fight over red or green may never be settled, there’s one thing everyone can agree on, New Mexico knows chile.

Throughout the playoffs this year, Hancock has always betted green chile. According to the Denver Post, he says it’s good luck. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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