Inspired by Sophie's "7 things about Albuquerque that make my friends in other cities burn with jealousy" post, I'm submitting my own - foodie style.
Red and green chile
This is obvious, but it has to be said. Nowhere else in the country do they have chile quite like what we have here. When I first moved to Albuquerque, I thought there was no way I would ever get into the chile culture. I was so very, very wrong. We have a friend in Houston who wants my enchiladas recipe. But I can't really give it to him knowing that he can't get green chile where he is. I just need to get off my duff and send a care package with the proper ingredients.
Quality Vietnamese restaurants
We may lack a great Chinese restaurant, but we certainly have a wealth of fantastic Vietnamese options. Da Lat
and Trang are a couple of my reliable favorites. In Albuquerque, you're never far from some rockin' Vietnamese food.
Memories of the Duke City Diner
My favorite nostalgia moments are reserved for this now defunct truck stop diner near I-25 and Menaul. At one time it was the 24-hour alternative to the Frontier. With grits. Mmm, grits: one food that is very hard to find in Albuquerque. The same heavily made-up, big-haired waitress worked there every time I went in the middle of the night. Her name wasn't Flo, but it might as well have been. The pictures of Elvis on the wall were genuine homage, not just decoration.
Dixon Apple Farm
A tasty day trip in a lovely locale. As fun as the voyage to buy the half bushel of apples is, the greatest moment is when you're home, staring at that massive bag on the kitchen counter, wondering how in the world you'll get through the whole thing. Apple pies, apples raw, apples for friends, apple bread, apple clove decorations, apples in your dreams, apples when you wake, apples, apples, apples
I already went on at length
about my love affair with TaLin
. *winks and smacks TaLin lightly on the rear*
Sushi in the Desert
I like that slightly naughty feeling like I'm getting away with something when I get some nice fresh sashimi in Albuquerque. With a major body of water nowhere in sight, we still manage to have a proliferation of sushi restaurants. And there's some pretty decent ones at that! I'm curious to hear what everybody's favorite sushi digs are. I still like the sashimi special at Shogun - there's something about the hypnotic boats that keeps me going back.
A wonderful fresh organic veggie and fruit option for folks. Even better, go visit the actual farm. With the tremendous lily pond, historic bed and breakfast and spacious location near the Rio, it's a real gem. Los Poblanos
offers a great opportunity for community-supported agriculture in the midst of a growing city.
Our wealth of wineries. We sure have a bunch all around the state. Casa Rondena
is a pleasant stop off in the North Valley. They have an attractive property and well run tasting room. I've been a bit critical over the years of some NM wines - many seem to be either overly sweet or too aggressively tannin-y. But the quality overall seems to be improving all the time. And I could live on the Gruet
sparkling wines - I'd nominate them as among the very best in their price range and holding their own against a lot that are more expensive.