When you think of dining in Albuquerque, you probably imagine a variety of New Mexican dishes, such as sopapillas, chilaquiles, and enchiladas smothered in plenty of green and red chile. And while you'll definitely find those classics on menus throughout the city, you'll also find many more options. You can enjoy Spanish tapas, chow down on some sushi, and taste dishes made with foods that pre-date the arrival of the first colonists. Regardless of what you’re in the mood for, Albuquerque has a restaurant to satisfy that craving.
No trip to New Mexico is complete without tasting a New Mexico roll at a sushi restaurant. Green and red chile is ubiquitous in the the southwest, and a New Mexico roll incorporates the iconic ingredient by adding a tempura-fried chile in place of fish. It's wonderfully crunchy, but if you want a bit more heat without adding wasabi, you can ask for your fresh chile instead. Sushi King serves up a variety of rolls, nigiri, and sashimi, and if you're very hungry, you can even order a sushi boat.
This restaurant is in the lobby of the historic Hotel Andaluz (which has housed its fair share of celebrities in the penthouse suite). Executive chef Marc Quiñones takes special pride in sourcing the finest ingredients from sustainable, organic, and local sources for the tapas served at Más. One of the most popular dishes is the Berkshire pork belly served with Anasazi bean ragout and corn. For a bit of a show with dinner, try ordering the s'mores which are brûléed table-side. If you’re staying at the hotel, you can eat in the restaurant or have the same expertly prepared dishes brought to your room.
Dine inside a renovated dairy house on the Los Poblanos farm at Campo. If you're interested in getting a behind-the-scenes peek at the prep, Campo's open kitchen allows diners to catch a glimpse of the chefs hard at work. Because Campo sources their food locally, the menus change seasonally, and while all meals there are delicious, they are most known for the excellent breakfast options. To enjoy what Campo calls "Rio Grande Valley Cuisine," be sure to try something cooked over their live fire, such as the chilaquiles.
This new addition to the Good Food 100 list has been serving breakfast in Albuquerque since 2006. You can get breakfast all day, and everything is made with local, sustainable ingredients. Try some of the freshly made English muffins, or go for the popular Grove pancakes, which are really more like thick crepes. While you wait for your breakfast, you can also pick up some candles, cookbooks, and more from the market built into the restaurant.
"Breaking Bad" fans will be pleased to know that the Grove is the same Grove where Walter and Todd met Lydia to discuss their various dealings.
Sixty Six Acres just opened in December 2018 and is already a neighborhood hotspot. The menu offers shareable appetizers and a variety of bowls, salads, and sandwiches. Enjoy a cocktail (made with locally produced liquor) on the outdoor patio, or meet some new friends at the community table.
The name also pays homage to the 66 acres of land (upon a portion of which the restaurant is located) that used to be an Indian school. The land is now owned by the 19 Pueblos of New Mexico.
A collection of guinea fowl and the colorful pottery of La Parada are the first thing that greet you at Farm and Table. The restaurant and neighboring shop used to be a carriage house on the Camino Royal, and you can even see some of the original adobe through a plexiglas window in the dining room. Farm and Table's menu changes with the seasons, but all the meals use ingredients that come from their 12 acres of farmland or local farmers. If you're there for brunch, try the enchiladas, or go for the tortilla burger—both are served with red or green chile.
Zinc combines French and American cuisine for a fine dining experience that doesn't feel stuffy in the slightest. It's hard to go wrong on the menu, but if you can't decide, try the three-course prix fixe menu along with a wine flight to get a taste of everything.
Dining with a crowd? Or craving some traditional New Mexican food? Head to El Pinto, which is a bit out of the way but well worth the trip. The 12-acre property can seat 1,200 guests and produces around four million jars of salsa annually.
Be sure to order the red chile ribs, either as the main course or as an appetizer. The red chile marinade and slow cooking method make for wonderfully tender and flavorful ribs. If you're new to New Mexican cuisine, go for one of the traditional plates, like Combination Plate #3 (a customer favorite that includes a rolled taco, red chile cheese enchilada, chile con carne, chile relleno, and pinto beans). If you can handle even more food also, try the sopapillas and make sure to drizzle some of the locally produced honey on top!
The 19 Pueblos of New Mexico and their history are integral to life in New Mexico. Pueblo Harvest is owned by the 19 Pueblos and brings "Native-sourced, Pueblo-inspired" cuisine to diners for breakfast, lunch and dinner. A particular menu highlight are the "pre-contact" options that utilize ingredients native to the Americas, giving guests the chance to sample pre-colonial flavors.
Frontier has been a favorite of University of New Mexico students since 1971. The yellow gambrel roof is something of an Albuquerque landmark. The 300-seat restaurant serves up New Mexico classics quickly, but a crowd favorite is the Frontier Sweet Rolls served warm with a sugary glaze on top.
Green Jeans Farmery comprises a collection of shipping containers that house 11 restaurants, shops, and bars. You can enjoy a pizza, drink a beer, hang out on a patio, buy souvenirs, and maybe even take a yoga all in the same place. With fun for all ages and all tastes, Green Jeans Farmery is a great place to spend a few hours.
Albuquerque can get quite hot, and nothing cools you off quite like a popsicle, or paleta in Spanish. Pop Fizz sells paletas made with all natural ingredients, boozy shakes, soda floats, and savory snacks like Frito pies. You can go for something purely sweet, like a mango paleta, or kick up the heat with the piña habanero pop. Their main location is located within National Hispanic Cultural Center where you can spend hours learning about Hispanic culture.
No lover of "Breaking Bad" should leave town without a visit to the Candy Lady. The candy makers here made all of the prop meth seen in the show, and you can bring home a dime bag of the bright blue rock candy as a souvenir. There is also a wide variety of fudges, chocolates, and other candies on sale, including an adults-only selection of lewd chocolates. If sweet treats aren't your thing, you can purchase postcards and "Breaking Bad" shirts there as well.
Farina serves artisanal pizzas with local, seasonal ingredients as well as house-made pastas alongside an extensive selection of beer and wine. In true Albuquerque fashion, you can add roasted green chile to any pizza that you order. The staff can help you order the best beer or wine to pair with your meal.