Restaurant Guide–New Mexico

Restaurant Guide Main Index


Albuquerque Metro

Las Cruces Metro


  • Date indicates the most recent update of the restaurants listed
  • Bold indicates my recommendations; others come from what I consider to be good sources (see bottom of page for further explanation)

Note: Effective Aug. 29, 2020 indoor dining will be permitted at 25 percent capacity. Restaurants and breweries have been permitted to operate outdoor seating at 50 percent of the maximum occupancy since early in the summer.


 

Abiquiu

Bode’s General Store–21196 US 84 (American) Open daily until 7 pm.  Green chile cheeseburger is the specialty, but also has sandwiches (reuben, cuban, etc.) and burritos. (Takeout only 7-2-20)

Alamogordo

Bamboo Garden–2617 N. White Sand’s Blvd. (Chinese) Closed Sun (and closed from 2:30 to 5 pm).  The chef prepares special authentic Chinese dishes on request. Choose the meat you want and whether you want it mild (Cantonese style) or spicy. Also has Korean food. (Takeout only 7-29-20))

Brown Bag Deli–900 Washington Ave. (Sandwiches) Open Daily.  The Brown Bag Deli in El Paso was pretty good but probably nothing special.  However, the one in Alamogordo has an interesting twist–the green chile chicken club (which is apparently the thing to get). (Takeout only 7-29-20)

Margo’s–504 1st St. (Mexican) Open daily to 6:30 pm (3 pm on Sun).  After trying a number of Mexican restaurants in Alamogordo I settled on this one as my favorite (although some new ones have opened since then that I have not tried).  It is not strictly New Mexico style as would be found in Albuquerque or Las Cruces, but makes decent use of NM chiles and has good food. (Takeout only 7-29-20)

Rockin’ BZ Burgers–3005 N. White Sands Blvd. (Burgers) Closed Mon (conflicting info about whether they are open after 3 pm).  This is reputed to be one of the best places in NM for green chile cheeseburgers. (Takeout only 7-29-20)

Thai Cuisine–604 E. 1st St. (Thai) Closed Sat lunch; closed Sun & Mon.  Reviews are good and based on photos the food looks authentic. Most people like the curry and stir fried dishes, but pad thai does not get good reviews. (Takeout only 7-29-20)

Waffle & Pancake Shoppe–950 S. White Sands Blvd. (Breakfast) Open daily 7 am to 1 pm.  Huevos rancheros with green chile have especially good reviews. (Temporarily closed 8-30-20)

Note: Alamogordo is usually a good place to get pistachios grown locally.  These are sometimes available at local stores. Pistachios are also available at roadside stands along US 54 north of town (McGinn’s has a good selection of flavored pistachios as well as a wide selection of New Mexico salsas).

See listings under La Luz, Tularosa, and Mescalero for other nearby restaurants

Angel Fire

Hail’s Holy Smoked BBQ–3400 Mountain View Blvd. (BBQ) 7 am to 2 pm (closed Sun & Mon).  Looks very promising that this is Texas quality BBQ. Also has green chile burritos with good reviews. (4-11-19)

Mikuna Grill–48 N. Angel Fire Rd. (Peruvian) Dinner only (open daily).  Good reviews. Has Peruvian cuisine as well as Southwestern (chicken fried steak, etc.). (4-11-19)

Pub ‘n Grub–52 N. Angel Fire Rd. (American) Dinner only (closed Tue & Wed).  When I saw good reviews of the chicken pot pie (with photos that make the reviews look credible), I knew this restaurant should be on my list.  Roast chicken, rib eye, NY strip, root beer, and fish and chips (available on Fridays) are also highly rated. (4-11-19)

Artesia

Adobe Rose–1614 N. 13th St. (New American) Closed Sat lunch & Sun evening. Upscale dining with some Mexican and Southwest style dishes (but the Mexican food does not get very good ratings except for the huevos rancheros). For dinner, though, get pork, chicken, elk, steaks, etc. The NM Magazine reader’s poll suggests pot roast or a Dr. Pepper lamb shank. (4-11-19)

Henry’s Barbecue–811 W. Main St. (BBQ) Closed Sat evening & Sun.  BBQ has good reviews (seems to meet Texas standards). Ribs are the most popular item, but they tend to run out long before the usual closing time of 8 pm. Gil says the brisket, turkey, and chicken are worthwhile as well. Multitudes of reviewers recommend the desserts. (4-11-19)

Aztec

Wonderful House–115 W. Aztec Blvd. (Chinese) Closed Mon. This is standard American style Chinese food, but it has the good ratings that similar restaurants in Farmington seem to lack. To get closer to “real” Chinese food, it seems that you should order the Hunan or Szechuan style dishes. Also of note is that you can get food without MSG or other special dietary requirements. (4-11-19)

Belen

Pete’s Cafe–105 N. 1st St. (New Mexican) Closed Sun.  A good bet for those traveling on I-25. Chile relleno, enchiladas, sopapillas are good. (Takeout and delivery only 6-13-20)

Carlsbad

Danny’s Place–902 S. Canal St. (BBQ) Closed Tue.  Has good reviews and national recognition as being one of the best BBQ restaurants anywhere. (This is the place that used to operate out of a Dairy Queen, and now it is just a BBQ place). I think Gil particularly likes the brisket, but there does not seem to be anything here that people do not like. The “St Louis ribs” indicate that it may not be Texas style BBQ, but reviewers just say that it is very good (whatever style it is). (4-11-19)

Trinity Hotel–201 S. Canal St. (American) Closed Sun. The most popular rest. on the New Mexico Magazine reader survey (they say to order the Italian food). Yelp says the steak, sandwiches, and New Mexican food are also good. Upscale, but affordable. Open for breakfast, but the NM Magazine poll likes Blue House Bakery better. (Temporarily closed 8-30-20)

YellowBrix–201 N. Canal St. (American) Open Daily. One of 3 rests. in Carlsbad which get (mostly) good reviews (others are Stock Exchange & Trinity Hotel). This one looks good for sandwiches (including green chile cheeseburger, cuban, and french dip) and other items such as roasted chicken. Outdoor pet-friendly patio is also a big plus. (4-11-19)

Carrizozo

Four Winds–111 Central Ave. (New Mexican) Open daily 5 am to 9 pm.  I loved the red enchiladas here, and thought they were the best I have had in SE New Mexico. This is located at the intersection of US 54 and US 380 (on the SE corner). (5-28-19)

ZZQ BBQ–6539 US 380 (BBQ) Open daily 8:30 am to 6 pm.  This is barbecue served from a trailer that the locals say is quite good. It seems to follow the recent trend of Texas style BBQ in southeastern NM. Brisket sandwich and burritoz are recommended. (5-28-19)

Chama

JV’s Place–851 Terrace Ave. (New Mexican).  Stuffed sopapillas are recommended. (7-24-19)

Chimayo

Rancho de Chimayo–300 Juan Medina Rd. (New Mexican) Open to 11:30 am to 7:30 pm (closed Mon).  NM combination plate, blue corn enchiladas, carne adovada, sopapillas. Red chile is said to be one of the best. This is one of the best known and highly rated New Mexican restaurants in the state (according to many sources). Note: chile contains ground beef unless you request the vegetarian version. (Dining room and patio dining are open 8-30-20)

Cimarron

St. James Hotel–617 S. Collison St. (American) Open daily for breakfast, lunch, & dinner. Historic hotel that I understood had been purchased by a business leader from Oklahoma City who has a ranch in the area. Good reviews on Yelp (mostly for the burgers), but they also have Mexican food and sandwiches. (3-23-19)

Cleveland

Kristy’s Korner Kafe–765 NM 518 (New Mexican) Breakfast & lunch (closes at 6:30 pm Mon-Sat and 3:00 pm Sun).  Red enchiladas and grilled tacos are recommended (and said to be among the best in NM). (4-28-19)

Teresa’s Tamales–3296 NM 518 (New Mexican) Open 8 am to 5 pm (closed Sun).  Tamales (red chile pork, green chile chicken, and vegetarian). Gov. Martinez visited in Jan. 2016. (4-28-19)

Cloudcroft

Dusty Boots–1315 James Canyon Hwy. (American) Open 7 am to 9 pm (closed Wed).  This seems to be the most popular breakfast place in town, with Southwestern as well as American style breakfast (omelettes are popular). Note: serves authentic German food every Friday starting at 5 pm (German food is not only meat, but has a vegetable plate which is said to be very good). (3-14-19)

Mad Jack’s Mountaintop Barbecue–105 James Canyon Hwy. (BBQ) Open Thu-Sun only (11 am to 3 pm). Gil describes this as “certainly one of, if not THE very best barbecue restaurant in New Mexico” (I think Watson’s in Tucumcari and Danny’s in Carlsbad are probably close enough that he leaves some ambiguity in his statement). Mad Jack’s got its start in Lockhart, Texas, recognized as the capital of Texas barbecue where there is a standard of excellence that probably cannot be matched (at least by Texas style BBQ). I am convinced by Gil and by Yelp reviewers that the food is excellent here. The issue is that you have to arrive well before the 11 am opening time and get in line to be assured of having some of the more popular items (although Gil says even the less popular items are good). One Yelp reviewer said he had success by arriving at 9:55 am, although I do not know what day of the week that was. (Read Yelp and Gil’s Blog for their recommendations on meats and strategy for standing in line). (4-12-19)

Rebecca’s–601 Corona Pl. (American) Open daily (closed 10:30 to 11:30 am; closed 2:00 to 5:30 pm).  Located in the upscale setting of the Cloudcroft Lodge, this restaurant provides equally upscale food (although upscale in the context of a mountain resort area). For instance, burgers are said to be $8.95, and although not cheap it is not that expensive either. (3-14-19)

Clovis

La Espiga de Oro–109 S. Maple St. (Mexican) Breakfast and lunch only (closed Wed).  Authentic Mexican food with fresh flavors, good tacos, and house made tortillas. Tacos and flautas are very good. Enchiladas are very good. (6-1-18)

Saeng’s Orient–19 Lasso Rd. (Thai) Closed Sun; closed Sat lunch.  Located just n. of the main gate to Cannon AFB. Very authentic tasting Thai food (if you ask for it spicy, you may get more than you want). My favorite item is the ginger stir fry. (Takeout only 8-30-20)

Note: Clovis also has good steaks, including at Shogun Japanese Steakhouse. There is a steakhouse on N. Prince St. at Lexington Rd. (n. of 21st St.) where I have eaten several times–it has changed names and management over the years but has remained a good place for steaks.

Cuba

El Bruno’s–6453 Main St. (New Mexican) Open daily 11 am to 9 pm. Carne adovada, enchiladas, huevos rancheros are recommended. The salsa is so popular they sell it in bottles for take-home. (Patio dining is available 8-30-20)

Deming

Elisa’s–208 S. Silver Ave. (Southern) Open 8 am to 7 pm Tue-Sat; 9 am to 4 pm Sun.  A very good Southern cooking restaurant in Deming sounds improbable, but it seems to be true. Fried chicken or catfish along with Mexican style (jalapeno) cornbread is popular. BBQ is one of their specialties. Millionaire pie is a “must try.” Note: entrance is on the alley behind the main building. (5-28-19)

Forgheddaboudit–115 N. Silver Ave. (Pizza) Dinner only (closed Mon).  Has award winning pizza that is recognized as one of the best in the US. Ingredients are shipped from the east coast and the sauce is made in house every day. People also recommend their other dishes, such as the green chile shrimp fettuccine (most dishes are NY style Italian but this is an exception that probably most people will enjoy). Will soon open a location in Las Cruces. (Takeout only 8-30-20)

Irma’s–123 S. Silver Ave. (New Mexican) Open 7 am to 8 pm daily.  Similar to Las Cruces style. Stuffed sopapilla was recommended to me over the enchiladas by the waitress (and I thought this was a good choice). The chile is made fresh every day–the waitresses taste it every morning and make recommendations to customers about which to order based on the flavor and how hot they want it. (5-28-19)

Note: There are several other Mexican restaurants in town.  From the photos El Camino Real does not seem to be as authentic for NM food as Irma’s, but it has good reviews and I can’t confirm this one way or the other without trying it. Si Senor is related to the rest. in Las Cruces with the same name, and is supposed to be authentic NM style, but I haven’t been to either place (so I can’t say whether it is better than Irma’s). (5-28-19)

Eagle Nest

Cowboy’s Corner–50 N. Hwy. 38 (American).  Not many reviews, but reviews are good. You can get green chile with just about anything on the menu. Breakfast is the most popular meal here. I would find just about any excuse to visit Eagle Nest, so coming here seems to be as good as any. (4-11-19)

El Rito

El Farolito–1212 Main St. (New Mexican) Open noon to 7 pm (closed Mon).  This is a quite small restaurant in a quite small town that seems to have a pilgrimage of people coming here to get some of the best New Mexican food in New Mexico (it is logical, of course, that it would be in New Mexico). There are several “El Ritos” in NM, but this is the one in Rio Arriba County on the highway between Ojo Caliente and Abiquiu (I’m sure that most people now know exactly where it is!). There is some controversy, though about what to order here. Gil (and many others) like the green chile cheeseburger, while many like the green chile enchiladas. Gil says the green chile beans and frito pie are also not to be missed. It is obvious, though, that everything is good, and that everything on the menu could be classified as “not to be missed.” (Takeout only, but there is a bench in front with limited seating 7-29-20)

Española

El Paragua–603 Santa Cruz Rd. (New Mexican) Open Daily. My experience is that, along with Santa Fe, Española is the quintessential New Mexican cuisine experience. Note: El Parasol is at the same address and has the same owner, but the menu is tacos, tamales, and tostadas, while El Paragua has enchiladas, steaks, and a more traditional dinner menu. The big restaurant is El Paragua, while El Parasol is in a small roadside stand. (Temporarily closed 7-2-20)

Eunice

Outlaw Grill–1007 E. Main St. (Steaks) Open Daily.  Good steakhouse in an area known for its good steaks. Also in Hobbs. (Takeout and delivery only 7-29-20)

Farmington

AshKii Navajo Grill–123 W. Broadway St. (Navajo) Open Mon-Fri 11 am to 4:30 pm.  Navajo taco, fry bread, mutton are mentioned in the reviews as favorites. (4-28-19)

Boon’s Family Thai–321 W. Main St. (Thai) Closed Sun.  Noodle dishes and curries are very good (especially massaman curry). (4-28-19)

Francisca’s–1000 N. Butler Ave. (New Mexican) Closed Sun.  New Mexican restaurant with good reviews. Carne adobada and chile relleno are especially recommended. Red chile looks like the real deal from the photos on Yelp. (4-28-19)

Los Hermanitos–3501 E. Main St. (New Mexican) Open Mon-Sat 6 am to 9 pm. Good place for New Mexican food. Enchiladas and sopapillas are said to be especially good. You have to pay extra for chips and salsa, but this is actually a sign that it is a traditional New Mexican restaurant. Open since 1992 and is a favorite, but reviews are mixed (with most being very good) while Francisca’s has reviews that are more consistently good.  (4-28-19)

Gallup

Avalon Restaurant–1104 E. Hwy 66 (Chinese).  Has Tinolang chicken (This is Filipino, which is the type of food the reviews recommend). Has Chinese food also. (4-28-19)

Bombay Grill–3405 W. Hwy 66 (Indian) Open Daily.  Indian restaurant inside the NKS Royal Truck Stop. The lunch buffet is popular (ends at 4 pm). I am tired of Indian food that is not spicy, but I don’t think that’s a problem in Gallup (based on my experience at Jerry’s). (4-28-19)

Jerry’s Cafe–406 W. Coal Ave. (New Mexican) Closed Sun. As good as the New Mexican restaurants in the Rio Grande Valley. An added bonus is that you can sometimes buy Navajo jewelry on the sidewalk in front of the restaurant. (4-11-19)

Route 66 Railway Cafe–2150 E. Hwy 66 (American) Open daily except Sun evening.  Very good ratings, but what stands out in the reviews is the omelette with green chile (and breakfast in general). (4-11-19)

Grants

El Cafecito–820 E. Santa Fe Ave. (New Mexican) Closed Sun.  Some reviewers say it has the best sopapillas they’ve ever had, and most recommend the stuffed sopapillas. You have to pay extra for chips and salsa (this is how many traditional New Mexican restaurants do it). I don’t know the hours, but they are open for breakfast (but many say skip the breakfast and go there for lunch. (4-28-19)

Hatch

Pepper Pot–207 W. Hall St. (New Mexican) Breakfast & lunch only (open daily).  One of several restaurants in town specializing in dishes made with the famous locally grown Hatch chile. Red and green chile are both extremely hot, but I think the red has a better flavor. Chile relleno is not as spicy and also extremely good. (Takeout only 6-13-20)

Sparky’s–115 Franklin St. (Hamburgers) Open 10:30 am to 4:00 pm Thu-Sun only.  Known for its green chile cheeseburgers, which some say are one of the best in the state (in fact, almost everyone says this). The line waiting to get in and order frequently goes out the door, though. (Takeout only 6-13-20)

Hillsboro

Hillsboro General Store–10697 Hwy. 152 (American) Open 8 am to 3 pm Fri-Sun only.  Mostly known for its burgers (including the green chile cheeseburger), but some say it has one of the best red enchiladas in NM.  (Anyone who has the chance should take Hwy 152 through Hillsboro even if you don’t eat here). (Takeout only 7-29-20)

Hobbs

El Caballero–210 W. Marland St. (Mexican) Open daily 6 am to 9 pm.  A small hole-in-the-wall with good Mexican food (authentic Mexican style). Get tacos or meat dishes. (6-1-18)

Saxony Inn–501 N. Marland Blvd. (Steaks) Dinner only (closed Sun).  Steak with good side dishes (such as spicy potato soup). Restaurant in an old motel–you’re paying for the food and not the setting. (6-1-18)

Note: For Asian food I am not sure whether Pacific Rim or Dragon China Buffet is better. Both have good as well as bad reviews. Thai Kitchen had the best reviews, but it is now closed.

Laguna

Laguna Burger–Hwy 66 (Hamburgers) Open daily 10:30 am to 10 pm.  Famous for its green chile cheeseburger. West of Albuquerque just off I-40. (5-25-19)

La Luz

Knuckleweed Place–526 La Borcita Canyon Rd. (American) Breakfast & lunch Sat & Sun; dinner Thu-Sun. A destination restaurant in a small town north of Alamogordo (that I think is one of the most scenic places in NM). Upscale food. Steak, chicken fried steak, onion soup, Monte Cristo, French toast, omelette, cheesecake, and carrot cake are recommended. Compared to Buckhorn Saloon in Pinos Altos this looks much better, although all they really have in common is that they serve steaks and they are in secluded locations. I don’t know the price here but it is listed as $$$. (4-28-19)

Las Vegas

Charlie’s Spic & Span–713 Douglas Ave. (New Mexican) Open daily (open to 6 pm Mon-Sat; 3 pm on Sun). One of the long time well regarded New Mexican restaurants in town. Stuffed sopapillas and carne adovada are good. Tortillas, donuts, and cream puffs are popular to eat here or for take-out. (7-17-19)

El Rialto–141 Bridge St. (New Mexican) Open 10:30 am to 8:30 pm (closed Sun & Mon).  Green chile has more New Mexico style heat than the red, but both have a good flavor. Stuffed sopapilla is said to be good. (7-17-19)

Kocina de Raphael–610 Legion Dr. (New Mexican).  One of the city’s long time standbys. Here the things to get are the Navajo taco or the red enchiladas with sopapillas on the side. (7-17-19)

Little Saigon–2001 N. Grand Ave. (Vietnamese) Closed Sat; closed Sun lunch (and closed from 2:00 to 4:30 pm). LV is known for its good New Mexican food, but this was the highest rated of all the restaurants on Urbanspoon. Vermicelli bowls have better reviews than the pho, though. (7-17-19)

Lordsburg

Kranberry’s Family Restaurant–1405 Main St. (American) Open daily 7 am to 9 pm.  Burger, hot open face turkey sandwich, pie and cobbler are recommended. (2-19-19)

Ramona’s Cafe–944 E. Motel Dr. (New Mexican).  Green chile and traditional New Mexican dishes (red enchiladas, etc.) are recommended (some do not like the chile relleno, though). (2-19-19)

Los Lunas

Teofilos–144 Main St. SW (New Mexican) Closed Mon & closes early (7 pm) on Sunday. One of the state’s best New Mexican restaurants. Chicken enchiladas, chiles rellenos, and sopapillas are recommended (Note: blue corn enchiladas are recommended). (Takeout only 6-13-20)

Mescalero

Old Road–692 Old Rd. (New Mexican) Open 9 am to 9 pm (closed Mon).  Stacked enchiladas are good (cash only and no alcohol is served). Note: I tried to go in Jan. 2018 and found that they were on their annual Christmas break until the third week of January. (Takeout only 6-13-20)

Mimbres

Three Questions Coffee House–2 El Otro Lado Rd. (American) Open 7 am to noon Tue-Sat.  A very small place that specializes in a breakfast buffet of fresh, healthy, home cooked food (some items have green chile). I was alerted to this restaurant by the New Mexico Magazine article showing the results of the readers’ poll (they said it was “Worth a Drive” to this place). The breakfast buffet is $6.50. Located north of Mile Marker 2 on Hwy 35. (5-25-19)

Personal Note: Mimbres is a beautiful place to see fall foliage of the cottonwoods around early November after the higher elevations have already had their fall season.

Peñasco

Sugar Nymphs Bistro–15046 SH 75 (Organic) Lunch Wed-Sun; dinner Fri & Sat.  Some items are New Mexican cuisine. Gil recommends salads, chipotle pork loin, vegetable lasagna (and several other items). (Outdoor patio dining is available 7-29-20)

Pinos Altos

Buckhorn Saloon–32 Main St. (Steaks) Dinner starts at 5 pm (closed Sun).  $$$ (but it’s one of Gil’s recommended restaurants–he says order the steak and the sasparilla). Some reviewers did not like the rib eye (Gil says get the porterhouse or the New York steak). Green chile stew is also available. Note: most people say the building and the setting is really a bigger draw than the food, but they like the food also. Also added to the picture is the fact that it has a new owner, and some of these reviews may now be dated. (Temporarily closed 7-29-20)

Portales

El Rancho–101 S. Chicago Ave. (New Mexican) Open daily except Sun evening.  I thought the food was somewhat “dumbed down” New Mexican cuisine (which is confirmed by Yelp reviews), but it was still worthwhile if you can’t make it to Albuquerque or Santa Fe (also confirmed by Yelp reviews). (3-23-19)

Hong Kong–113 N. Chicago Ave. (Chinese) Open Daily. Buffet restaurant, but customers can ask for authentic Chinese dishes (nothing fancy, but they have good noodle soup and bean curd soup). Sometimes the Chinese students at the university order these dishes. The buffet is pretty good too–nothing spectacular but very good for a small town. (3-23-19)

Sunland Peanut–42593 US 70 (Food Store).  Located just east of Portales, this is a peanut factory that sells various products manufactured on site (as well as the peanuts themselves).  In season you can also take tours of the factory. (3-23-19)

Ramah

Ancient Way Cafe–4018 Ice Caves Rd. (American) Breakfast & lunch daily except Wed; dinner Fri & Sat.  Upscale, organic food (with a large number of vegetarian options).  Many say the dinners on weekends are a special treat.  Note: even though it’s upscale, I don’t think it’s all that expensive. I think it is actually located in El Morro, about 12 miles east of Ramah on SH 53. (Has outdoor covered seating 7-29-20)

Ranchos de Taos

Ranchos Plaza Grill–8 Ranchos Plaza (New Mexican) Closed Sun evening, Mon, & Tue (other days closes at 7 pm).  Good New Mexican food in a hacienda setting, but it has other menu items as well. I always like to know whether most people prefer the enchiladas or the stuffed sopapilla, and here it seems to be the enchiladas. (Takeout only 6-13-20)

Raton

La Cosina–745 S. 3rd St. (New Mexican) Open Tue, Thurs, & Fri only.  New Mexican cuisine. People say the enchiladas are decent, but the best items are posole and the sopapillas. Items with green chile (enchiladas, burritos, etc.) are not as spicy as in other parts of NM, but flavor is said to be good enough that you can get a taste of New Mexican cuisine. (Temporarily closed 7-2-20)

The Ice House–945 S. 2nd St. (BBQ) Closed Sun & Mon.  Reviewers say the meat is excellent, particularly the pulled pork (but people who eat the brisket or ribs say they are excellent as well). The sauces are very different (mostly sweet) but diners like them. They say, though, that they go best with the pork. Also has steak, which gets even better reviews than the BBQ. (Takeout only 7-2-20)

Roswell

Hunan–1000 W. Hobbs St. (Chinese) Open 11 am to 8 pm (closed Sun).  Really good, authentic Chinese food available. (Takeout and delivery only 7-29-20)

Pasta Cafe–1208 N. Main St. (Italian) Open Daily.  The now closed Pasta Cafe in Ruidoso had very good food and an even better wine selection, so I assume the Roswell restaurant will be good as well. Chicken cacciatore (in Ruidoso) was very good, but I did not care for the marsala. Yelp reviewers like the manicotti. (Temporarily closed 7-29-20)

Taqueria Jalisco–1622 S. Main St. (Mexican) Open Daily.  Has a full menu (not just tacos). I thought the red enchiladas were very good, and taste like the ones in El Paso (this is a good thing!) Carne adobada is also good, and is a special on Fri. night. (Takeout only 7-29-20)

Taste of Thai–1303 W. 2nd St. (Thai)  Open Daily.  Has good ratings (from people who seem to know how Thai food is supposed to be prepared). (Takeout only 7-29-20)

Ruidoso

Casa Blanca–501 Mechem Dr. (New Mexican) Open Daily. I was very impressed that they had good New Mexican food in an area of the state where it is not easy to find. Stuffed sopapilla with green chile was very good. (Takeout and delivery only 6-13-20)

Cornerstone Bakery Cafe–1712 Sudderth Dr. (Bakery) Open for breakfast & lunch.  Serves bacon, eggs, pancakes, biscuits, etc., but their specialty is anything that is baked. Pastries are also very good. (Takeout, and dining is available in an outside tent 6-13-20)

Great Wall of China–2913 Sudderth Dr. (Chinese) Closed Sun & Mon.  Talk to the owner, Ryan, for special orders and/or authentic Chinese food. Otherwise it is typical Americanized food (with good flavor, though).  Sushi is also available. (Takeout and delivery only 6-13-20)

Lincoln County Grill–2717 Sudderth Dr. (Southwest) Open daily 7 am to 9 pm.  Green chile cheeseburger, green chile chicken fried steak. (Takeout only 6-13-20)

San Antonio

Buckhorn Tavern–68 US Hwy 380 (Hamburgers) Closed Sat evening & Sun.  The “other” place in town for green chile cheeseburgers (many say it is as good or better than Owl). Google confirms that it is open Jun. 2020 (other sources had said that it closed). (Outdoor patio dining is available 7-29-20)

Owl Bar & Cafe–77 US Hwy 380 (Hamburgers) Closed Sun.  Known for its green chile cheeseburger.  Manny’s Buckhorn Tavern across the street may be just as good or even better. (Takeout only 6-13-20)

San Antonio Crane–17 Pino St. (New Mexican) Breakfast & lunch Wed-Sun; open to 7 pm Wed-Fri.  Authentic and good tasting New Mexican cuisine. John Shipman (who writes a food blog for Socorro) says this is the best NM cuisine in Socorro County.  He recommends the carne adovada (Yelp readers like the stuffed sopapilla).  Note: this is not to be confused with the Crane Cafe at the Lemitar exit on I-25 (a truck stop), although this restaurant also gets good reviews on Yelp. (Takeout only 6-13-20)

San Jon

Taste of India–2405 NM 469 (Indian) Located in a truck stop on the n. side of I-40 at the San Jon exit. Buffet available. (Takeout only 7-29-20)

Santa Fe

Dolina–402 N. Guadalupe St. (Cafe) Breakfast & lunch only (open daily).  Food is Slovakian inspired. Hungarian goulash is their signature dish. House made pies, cakes and pastries are recommended. Large breakfast menu is popular (green chile omelette, English muffins, ricotta pancakes, etc.). (Takeout only 7-29-20)

El Queretano–4430 Airport Rd. (Mexican) Closed Sun & closed Mon evening.  Food truck that serves south of the border style Mexican food that reviewers say is authentic and delicious. People compare it to food truck style, but it is better because it is in a regular location (it is not a mobile food truck) and the menu gives you a wide variety of choices. (Takeout only, but it apparently has one picnic table available 7-2-20)

Geronimo–724 Canyon Rd. (Fine Dining) Dinner only (Open daily).  Expensive, and perhaps does not meet the criteria for this list, but Gil and others point to it as possibly the best fine dining in Santa Fe and worth the money. Elk tenderloin, crab cakes, and apple & pecan crostade are recommended. (Has opened an outdoor patio 7-29-20)

Izanami–3.5 mi. up Hyde Park Rd. (Japanese) Dinner only (open daily).  Izakaya style Japanese rest. Said to be one of the best Japanese rests. in the S.W. (Outside dining is available 7-29-20)

Jambo Cafe–2010 Cerrillos Rd. (Jamaican) Open 11 am to 8 pm (closed Sun).  African & Caribbean cuisine. Gil gives this a higher rating than many restaurants which are much more expensive. Good choices are jerk chicken or combination plate, and just about all the desserts they serve. Note: they have another location at 505 Cerillos Rd. (Takeout only 7-29-20)

La Boca–72 W. Marcy St. (Spanish) Open Wed-Sun 4 pm to 9 pm.  Expensive, but looks like extremely good food that is worth the price. Specializes in tapas. (Outdoor dining is available 7-29-20)

La Choza–905 Alarid St. (New Mexican) Dinner only (closed Sun).  Gil recommends this as the place to get a stuffed sopaipilla. Some say their red chile is the best in NM. (Outdoor dining is available 7-29-20)

Los Potrillos–1947 Cerrillos Rd. (Mexican) Closed Wed.  Gil’s favorite upscale Mexican rest. other than the Rick Bayless restaurants. Reviewers like enchiladas with various sauces (including suizas), moles, chiles en ahogada. Gil likes cabrito in peanut and almond sauce, quesadilla sincronizada, molcajete al pastor, costillas Pancho Villa, chiles rellenos en nogada. (Takeout only 7-29-20)

Paper Dosa–551 W. Cordova Rd. (Indian) Closed Mon (and closed from 2 to 5 pm).  South Indian style dosa that is very popular with customers. Some of the dosa served is different than you will find elsewhere (this and the quality make it very popular). (Some sources say patio is available with limited seating and by reservation only 7-29-20)

Pho Kim–919 W. Alameda St. (Vietnamese) Open Daily.  Recommended by people from the west coast. Good pho, and the vermicelli dishes are apparently even better.  (Takeout only 7-29-20)

Sazon–221 Shelby St. (Mexican) Dinner only (closed Sun).  Mexico City style restaurant. Mole negro and chiles en nogada are recommended. Based on reviews, though, I question whether it is worth the cost ($$$). (Outdoor dining is available 7-29-20)

The Shed–113 E. Palace Ave. (New Mexican) Closed Sun (and closed from 2:30 to 5 pm).  Same owners as La Choza, but many think the food is better here (actually, both are better at certain things). Gil recommends this as the place to get blue corn enchiladas. The Shed is in a historic building for a better ambiance (but parking can be a problem). (Outdoor dining is available 7-29-20)

Tibet Kitchen–3003 S. St. Francis Dr. (Himalayan) Lunch only (closed Sat & Sun).  Reviewers say this is traditional Tibetan food. People like the flavor and the selection (including a large choice of vegetarian food). Dumplings are popular, some of the food is spicy (such as chili chicken), but reviewers say it is not too spicy. (Takeout only 7-29-20)

Note: I have several comments about Santa Fe: (1) This is one of the best food cities in the U.S., (2) It is very common to provide a fusion between New Mexican food and other cuisines (at least to the point of having both on the menu), (3) Some of the restaurants listed here are $$$ or more, but unique to Santa Fe (thus I want to include them on the list), (4) rather than list all the good restaurants here, I have purposely tried to narrow the list for those who just want to try the most recommended restaurants, (5) La Choza, The Shed, and Maria’s were voted the best New Mexican style restaurants in the New Mexico Magazine poll of 2016.

Santa Rosa

Comet II Drive In–217 Will Rogers Dr. (New Mexican).  Has hamburgers and other American food items, but the New Mexican cuisine is its specialty.  Blue corn enchiladas and chiles rellenos are recommended. (3-23-19)

Note: Joseph’s is the restaurant for nostalgia in Santa Rosa, and I even ate there when I was a kid (and still remember it). Today, though, it has mixed reviews, and Comet seems to be better (but if you go to Joseph’s the carne adovada and green chile cheeseburger are recommended). (3-23-19)

Silver City

Adobe Springs Cafe–1617 Silver Heights Blvd. (New American).  Diner that serves American food, with some Mexican. Specials are recommended (such as Belgian waffles on Wed.and the Czech potato salad). Reviewers say avoid the standard sandwiches and diner food, and instead get some of their specials, upscale dishes, or Mexican food. Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, but I don’t know which days (open past 8 pm, when most other restaurants are closed). (6-5-19)

Jalisco Cafe–100 S. Bullard St. (New Mexican) Open daily except Sun evening.  Good reviews–commenters say you can tell this restaurant is not too far from Hatch (the chile capital of the US). Chile relleno is especially popular (and there is no sauce on top, as it should be!). (6-5-19)

Revel–304 N. Bullard St. (New American) Closed Wed.  Food seems to be good not only for Silver City, but for anywhere. Has grass fed burgers and food is locally sourced “whenever possible.” (6-5-19)

Silver Cafe–514 N. Bullard St. (New Mexican) Closed Sun.  Has regular cafe style food as well as legit New Mexican cuisine. Recommended by readers in the NM Magazine poll for the New Mexican style breakfast (although they like Jalisco Cafe better for dinner–perhaps because Jalisco is open later). Chiles rellenos are recommended here. (6-5-19)

Tapas Tree Grill–619 N. Bullard St. (Tapas) Lunch Tue-Sat, dinner Thu & Fri.  Has quite a varied menu of different cuisines, but some of the most popular are the Thai noodle bowl, Vietnemese pork crepe, burger, and lamb kefta. (6-5-19)

Note: see listing under Pinos Altos for another nearby restaurant

Socorro

El Camino–707 N. California St. (New Mexican) Open 24 hours.  Good New Mexican food in a coffee shop style restaurant that has been around for decades. Not the highest rated NM food in Socorro, but it’s good (and open any time of the day or night). I had a very good experience ordering a breakfast plate with a side dish of green chile to put on top. (Takeout only 6-13-20)

La Pasadita–230 Garfield St. (New Mexican) Closed Sat & Sun.  Blue corn enchiladas are recommended (NM Magazine readers say to get the empanadas). (Takeout only 6-13-20)

Socorro Springs–1012 N. California St. (Brewpub) Open daily 11 am to 9 pm. Shipman’s blog says the food is “great” (not just good), so this is a good source. Wood fired pizza is popular here. Other popular items are Italian (pasta, calzone, etc.). (Takeout only 6-13-20)

Note: see listings under San Antonio for other nearby restaurants

Springer

Elida’s Cafe–801 Railroad Ave. (New Mexican) Breakfast & lunch only (closed Mon).  Most reviews are positive, some say the green chile is not as flavorful as the red, some say several items are too salty. Huevos rancheros are recommended. I’m listing it as probably a good place to get New Mexican cuisine. (Based on reviews I’m uncertain about whether I should put the Brown Hotel on this list). (Takeout only 7-2-20)

Sunland Park

Ardovino’s Desert Crossing–1 Ardovino Dr. (Italian) Dinner Thu-Sun; brunch Sat & Sun.  I don’t think it’s terribly expensive (like a fine dining restaurant), but reviewers say it does take some time to eat here (and most of them order wine while they are waiting). Go south from the intersection of SH 273 (McNutt) and SH 498 (Racetrack Dr.). (Outdoor patio dining is available 7-29-20)

Billy Crews–1200 Country Club Dr. (American) Open daily (closed 3 pm to 5:30 pm).  Steakhouse with other entrees available (chicken, fish, etc.). This is one of the better steakhouses I have found because of the food, the variety on the menu, and the value you get for your money. (Has an outdoor patio but their web site does not say whether it is open right now 7-29-20)

Taos

Great Noodles–120 Bent St. (Thai) Open daily 11 am to 5 pm.  Not a wide selection of items, but flavorful, filling, and natural ingredients in the noodle bowls. Thai style red curry noodles are good. This is a food stand (not a restaurant). (Takeout only 6-13-20)

La Cueva–135 Paseo del Pueblo Sur (New Mexican) Closed Sun.  Upscale Mexican & New Mexican–organic & local ingredients. Not traditional New Mexican, but has a lot of New Mexican elements. Tortilla soup may be better than the ones that are traditional style. (Takeout only 7-2-20)

Michael’s Kitchen–304 Paseo del Pueblo Norte (New Mexican) Open daily 7 am to 2 pm.  A Taos staple for NM food. Stuffed sopapilla is good. The NM Magazine reader’s poll voted it the best place in town for breakfast. (Takeout only 7-29-20)

Orlando’s–1114 Don Juan Valdez Ln. (New Mexican) Open Daily (closed from 3 to 5 pm).  Los colores enchiladas (3 enchiladas, each with a different sauce) is popular, and is the specialty of the restaurant. Chile relleno is good. Reviews say the red chile is especially good. This was the most recommended NM style restaurant on Urbanspoon (also the most popular on the NM Magazine reader’s poll in 2016). Note: Gil’s Blog indicates that this is better New Mexican food than Michael’s Kitchen, and information I have read indicates that this is the case.  (Dining is available on their patio 7-2-20)

Taos Ski Valley

Bavarian Lodge–100 Kachina Rd. (German) Open 11 am to 4 pm daily (summer hours).  Authentic, but expensive and service is slow. Reviewers say reservations are a must. Some of the reviews indicate the food is hit or miss. he best bet seems to be the sausages and goulasch. Schnitzel is disappointing to many. (Patio dining is available 7-2-20)

Tinnie

Tinnie’s Silver Dollar–28842 US 70 (Steaks) Open 11 am to 8 pm Fri & Sat; 11-2 on Sun. This restaurant has been around for years, but has been open off and on over the past few years. Steaks are the specialty, although it has other items. People also say good things about the bar. Some have gone on Thursday to find it closed (or else it closed early). Apparently it’s best to go Fri-Sun.  Tinnie is located west of Roswell on US 70. Note: Yelp reports that as of Apr. 2019 it is temporarily closed. (Outside dining is available 7-29-20)

Truth or Consequences

Latitude 33–304 S. Pershing (Asian fusion) Closed Mon (and closed from 2 to 5 pm weekdays). Asian rest. in T or C with very high ratings. The “fusion” part includes dishes from various Asian countries and also fusion dishes such as the Asian fusion steak frites (one that Gil tried and calls “New Mexico meets Asia meets France”). (Takeout only 6-13-20)

Tucumcari

El Herradero–112 E. Main St. (Mexican) Open daily 8 am to 7:30 pm (closes early on Sun). The name on the sign outside says “El Pueblito,” but this is the same place. Enchiladas are New Mexico style but other items are authentic Mexican (get the red enchiladas if you want them spicy).  Has higher ratings than La Cita (reviewers like the food better here but mostly it is not New Mexican style). (3-14-19)

La Cita–812 S. 1st St. (New Mexican) Open daily except Sun evening. Stuffed sopapillas are recommended. Chile relleno seems to be the next best bet. (3-14-19)

Watson’s BBQ–502 S. Lake St. (BBQ) Open 10:30 to 4:30 (3:30 on Sat) closed Sun.  Proclaimed as one of the best barbecue restaurants in the US by almost everyone who has tried it (the owner is originally from San Antonio). Cooked on mesquite wood that is not used until it has been sufficiently dried (usually about 2 years). Gil proclaims both the ribs and brisket of being worthy of being eaten without the sauce, although all the meats really get high praise by everyone who reviews them. This is located in the owner’s other business, Tucumcari Ranch Supply. (3-14-19)

Note: La Cita is the best place in Tucumcari that I have tried personally. Del’s is very popular and has high ratings, but it had a number of problems for me. El Herradero has the best ratings in town, but this is south of the border Mexican (not New Mexican). I would not bother with the New Mexican food in Tucumcari if I were headed to Albuquerque where it is a lot better, but if I were going the other direction I might stop here for my “last chance” to eat New Mexican cuisine.

Tularosa

Casa de Sueños–35 St. Francis Dr. (New Mexican) Open Daily.  Very good New Mexican style restaurant (somewhat of a rarity in SE New Mexico). The red enchiladas here probably “stack up” with anyone’s (pun intended, since these are stacked enchiladas). (5-25-19)

Tulie Freeze–419 St. Francis Dr. (Ice Cream).  I have passed by this place so many times I decided to look it up on Yelp. This is a New Mexico version of Dairy Queen–ice cream is the specialty. Root beer floats are very good. Chicken tacos are recommended, but the other food does not sound especially worthwhile from the reviews. (5-25-19)

Yum-Yum’s–460 Central Ave. (Mexican) Breakfast & lunch only (closed Sun).  For Mexican food in Tularosa I feel that there is no need to go anywhere other than Casa de Suenos. However, Yum-Yum’s is open for breakfast (which Casa de Suenos is not) and the breakfast burritos get good reviews.  Indian tacos are also recommended. I have also read that the stacked enchiladas are very good. If you can get their donuts fresh out of the oven this would be very worthwhile. Note: for traditional Mexican pan dulce (sweet bread) you can go to Laredo Bakery. (5-25-19)

 

Notes About This List:

This is a “master list” of restaurants that I have seen on the Internet or other sources and would like to try, or that I think would be of interest to others.  I do not mean for this to be an exhaustive list of every good place to eat, but it should represent a good sample of the most interesting or unique restaurants, along with a few that best represent an area’s regional cuisine.  My own recommendations are in Bold.

I am not looking to include:

  • Fine dining (unless they are unique because of regional specialties)
  • Low end restaurants that are popular with locals but may not be of much interest to travelers or people in general (everyone will have to use their judgment on this one)

Extra consideration for the following:

  • The food is organic, fresh, healthy, or farm to table
  • The restaurant serves a relatively hard to find type of ethnic food and reviews are good

In addition to the regular guidelines I try to include:

  • The best Asian restaurants in the area even if they are not totally authentic
  • Particularly good Mexican restaurants (this usually means the food is from a particular state in Mexico or it is one of the best examples of a U.S. regional style)

Please feel free to leave your own comments or suggestions.

 

Sources:

Chowhound (New Mexico)

Eater Guide to the Southwest 2019

EGullet (Southwest)

Gil’s Thrilling (And Filling) Blog

Google Maps

New Mexico Magazine “2016 Readers’ Poll Winners” (Mar. 2016)

New Mexico Magazine “Hidden NM” and “Tasting NM” (Jul. 2016)

New Mexico Magazine “Readers’ Choice Dining Awards 2017” (Mar. 2017)

John Shipman (Socorro)

Urbanspoon.com (former web site which I used for preliminary research)

Yelp (New Mexico)

Zomato (Santa Fe)

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