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Jan 18, 2009 12:55 PM

Lunch en route from Albuquerque to Santa Fe?

Will be arriving at Albuquerque Airport at around 1 p.m. on a weekday, renting a car, and heading to Santa Fe. What are your recommendations for lunch either near the airport or en route?

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  1. Are you familiar with the area? There are a number of places in ABQ that would work or you could stop in Bernalillo for some food; it is a little less than half way between the 2 cities.

    For Bernalillo, take I 25 north and exit at 242. At the end of exit ramp, make a left onto SR 550 west. Continue for a short distance and make a left onto SR 313, which is S CAMINO DEL PUEBLO. Continue down the road to 3 good choices:
    Abuelita's New Mexican Kitchen [about 25 minutes north of ABQ] on the way to Santa Fe

    The Range Cafe
    926 S Camino del Pueblo

    Flying Star
    200 S Camino del Pueblo
    Bernalillo, NM 87004
    (505) 404-2100

    I will post places close to airport, if you'd like.

    The last two have both American classics as well as New Mexican.

    6 Replies
    1. re: DebitNM

      No, I'm not familiar with the area at all. If you wouldn't mind posting places closer to the airport, that would be great. Thanks!

      1. re: Tatai

        When you exit the Transportation Center [all onsite rental cars are there], don't get onto I 25. You want to stay on University Blvd. Head north on University for a few miles and then make a right turn on Central. That will take you past the Univ of New Mexico.

        Directly across the street from main entrance of UNM is along time favorite -
        The Frontier[corner of Cornell] It has New Mexican food [the BEST tortillas in the world, made fresh as you watch] and some non-NM things too.
        Frontier - new mexican, across from Univ. of NM
        (505) 266-0550
        2400 Central Ave SE

        There is also an Einstein Bagels place on your right [corner of Stanford], which has good lunch items.

        If you contine a mile or so in the same direction [east] you will come to the Nob Hill section of town. Lots of good places to eat along this stretch of Central.

        The stretch runs from Girard to Carlisle. There is a Flying Star down near Carlisle, also a Baja BumbleBee that has really good, fresh mexican and roasted chicken.

        El Patio New Mexican/SW [Univ area]
        142 Harvard St. NE

        Il Vicino Wood Oven pizza - Nob hill/University area EXCELLENT brew & pizza
        (505) 266-7855
        3403 Central Ave NE

        La Provence Brasserie {Nob Hill} [amazing truffle fries and bistro burger]
        3001 Central Ave NE
        Albuquerque, NM 87106
        (505) 254-7644

        Nobb Hill Bar & Grill
        3128 Central Ave SE
        Albuquerque, NM 87106
        (505) 266-6872

        Orchid Thai [this is a bit further east than the rest]
        4300 Central Ave SE
        Albuquerque, NM 87108
        (505) 265-4047

        The address indicates which side of the street it's on, as Central is the division for South and North. North is the left side of street as you head down central from University [which is a N/S road] and South is the right side.

        These are just some of the places along Central. I have eaten at all and can highly recommend any of them.

        Have a great time!

        1. re: DebitNM

          Of all the recommendations above are there some that you would recommend over others? or any other recommendations along the I-25 (not too far off)? I will be arriving into Albuquerque about 11:00 a.m. and then heading up to Taos. I am looking for something in Albuquerque or Bernadillo.

          1. re: tlegray

            All of the places listed in my post are no more than 10 minutes off I 25. For a nice lunch, a place that was new to me - try The Grove, it is 2 minutes west of I 25 on Central and Walter.

            It's isn't New Mexican, but they have great food.


            1. re: DebitNM

              Thank you so much for the quick response. I will not be there until October and have just started doing my research. There are allot of recommendations for Taos (2 nights) and Santa Fe (5 nights) where I will be spending all of my time ( and will be able to sample New Mexican cuisine) but this is a more specific need. The Grove Cafe looks wonderful and is at the top of the list.

          2. re: DebitNM

            Orchid Thai- I freakin loooove that place! Almost everyime I visit ABQ I have to stop in for chicken with pineapple curry for the fiance, and pad thai for myself...yum.

      2. If you're interested in New Mexican food, I suggest Mary & Tito's or Padilla's. Mary & Tito's has some of the best carne adovada and red chile in Albuquerque and does a good job with most of the other things they serve there. Padilla's is another place that does a nice job with everything.

        Neither place is very far from I-25.

        1. We always enjoy the Placitas Flying Star. Great staff and even with my limited diet there's always something tasty for me to eat. I've learned to ask them not to add salt - they can be a wee bit heavy handed for my taste.

          2 Replies
          1. re: momadamsa

            Do you mean the Flying Star that is in Bernalillo? Or is the one you mentioned something different?

            1. re: DebitNM

              Ah, their website says it's Bernalillo, but it's the Placitas exit...

          2. Just to throw out another idea.... if you want to take the Turquoise Trail, there's a new Italian place on North 14 called Gordon's. I haven't tried it yet, but the owner is Gordon from Vivace in Nob Hill, so might be worth a shot.