There are probably more New Mexican restaurants in Albuquerque than any other kind. Some are loved for their ambience, some their food, and many for both. Whether you like your enchiladas with onions or not, your tortillas freshly made, or your chile hot, there is a place in Albuquerque to suit your needs.
Here are some top picks to get you started, listed by geographic location. Each of the restaurants is family owned and a local favorite. There are no chains on this list!
Monroe's means comfort food, from its smooth, tasty beans to its classic red cheese enchiladas. It's basic fare at its best, and is reasonably priced to boot. Bonus? Sometimes you get to chat with Miguel, the owner.
The food at Mary and Tito's is the real deal, a lot like Mom used to make, fresh and simple. There's a jukebox and an unpretentious attitude. Despite its homey roots the restaurant has gotten a James Beard Award, and the notoriety and success that comes with it. The mom and pop restaurant is now run by mom and daughter since Tito passed away. Try their chile rellenos and homemade desserts.
La Salita has been a local favorite in the Northeast Heights for more than 35 years. Freshly made tortilla chips, large, puffy sopapillas are just some of the items that keep this eatery a favorite.
Old Town: Duran's Central Pharmacy
Duran's serves up classic New Mexican the way Momasita used to, with a thick red chile sauce and homemade tortillas. It's comfort food at its best.
They make great patates and aren't slouches when it comes to soapapillas. El Patio has a loyal following beyond the nearby university students. Locals who like chile with a bit of spike love this restaurant.
Southwest: El Modelo1715 2nd Street SW
Again, if you're looking for the real deal, this is your spot. Don't expect a fancy, sit down, restaurant, though, as this local gem has only takeaway and a few outdoor tables as options. El Modelo makes some of the best tamales and sopapillas in town.
Mac's is the real deal. It's a diner from the Route 66 days that is still a diner. They feature an eclectic menu with some New Mexican gems. They feature New Mexican favorites such as taquitos, tamales, Indian tacos, enchiladas, chile rellenos and stuffed sopapillas. Try their house specialty of steak fingers and enchiladas.