Hall of Fame

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Last revised July 18, 2020

Larry’s New Mexico Hall of Fame ( in no particular order):

  1. Best Green Chile Cheeseburger—Sparky’s (in Hatch) ♥♥♥♥♥
  2. Best Stuffed Sopaipillas (Carne Adovada)—Mary and Tito’s; Infinitesimally close runner-up—Rancho de Chimayó Restauranté
  3. Best Red Chile—Mary and Tito’s
  4. Best Thai—Pad Thai Cafe
  5. Best REAL Mexican—El Zaraneado and Antojito Lupe
  6. Best Indian—Namaste
  7. Best Coffee Shop—Cafe Bella Coffee (Rio Rancho)♥♥♥
  8. Best New Mexican Restaurant—Mary and Tito’s
  9. Best Pizza Restaurant—Farina on Central (EDO)
  10. Best Individual Pizza—Piatanzi Mushroom Pizza
  11. Best Corrales Restaurant—The Indigo Crow
  12. Best Cubano—The Guava Tree
  13. Best Middle Eastern Restaurant—Alquds Mediterranean Grill & Grocery
  14. Best Chef—Jennifer James
  15. Best Brews—Monk’s Corner Taproom (Trilpe Reserve)
  16. Hottest Red Chile — Cecilia’s. Truly incendiary! ♥
  17. Best Korean—Ariraga Oriental Market
  18. Best Japanese Lunch—Mogu Mogu

♥ Best Newcomer (2018) (A Tie) — Poki Poblano Fusion Lounge
and —  High Point Grill (ABQ)
♥ Best Newcomer (2017)—M’Tucci’s Moderno
♥ Best Newcomer (2016)—Eclectic Urban Pizzeria and Tap House (ABQ)
♥ Best Newcomer (2015)— The Point Grill (Rio Rancho)
♥ Best Newcomer (2014)— Piatanzi (ABQ)
♥ Best Newcomer (2013)— Amore Neapolitan Pizzeria (ABQ)
♥ Best Newcomer (2012)— ACEQ (Arroyo Seco)
♥ Best Newcomer (2011)— El Bruno’s Restaurante y Cantina (ABQ)
♥ Best Newcomer (2010)— Desert Fish (now closed)
♥ Best Newcomer (2009)— Lucia (now closed)
♥ Best Newcomer (2008)— Namaste

Larry’s New Mexico Hall of Shame:

  1. Worst Dining Experience Ever — Gigi Italian Bistro (Albuquerque)
  2. Stupidest Fake Italian — Olive Garden (All of them)
  3. Worst Meal Ever —Banana Leaf (Rio Rancho)
  4. Worst Service—Blake’s Lotaburger (Montgomery Blvd NE)
  5. Worst Coffee & Dessert—Village Inn (Rio Rancho)
  6. Worst Huevos Rancheros (Red)—Little Anita’s (Corrales)
  7. Biggest Disappointments—El Pinto and Sadie’s (North Valley)
  8. Worst Chinese ever!—Fortune Cookie (Near Corrales, mercifully closed)
  9. Worst Crab Soup— Cooperage (Fairgrounds)
  10. Worst Mexican/New Mexican—Los Cuates (Cottonwood)

Larry’s New Mexico Green Chile Cheeseburger (GCCB) Quest

I order GCCBs Competition Style (for uniformity of comparison).
Bun, patty, cheese, and green chiles. No adulterants or contaminants.

This is a living list. Check often for updates.
Revised May 6, 2019 

  1. Sparky’s (Hatch) ♥♥♥♥♥,
  2. Owl Bar (San Antonio)
  3. Horseman’s Haven Cafe (Santa Fe)
  4. Monte Carlo Steakhouse (Albuquerque)
  5. Owl Cafe (Albuquerque)
  6. Indigo Crow (Corrales)
  7. Griff’s Hamburgers (Albuquerque)
  8. Corrales Bistro Brewery (Corrales)
  9. Perea’s Tijuana Bar (Corrales)
  10. Spinn’s Burger & Beer (Albuquerque)

Larry’s Bread Pudding Hall of Fame:

  1. Flamez 
  2. Lambert’s (Taos)
  3. Two Fools Tavern (Nob Hill)
  4. Indigo Crow Cafe (Corrales) ♥
  5. Fresh Bistro (Los Ranchos de Albuquerque)
  6. St. Clair Winery & Bistro (ABQ Old Town)
  7. Cecilia’s Restaurant (ABQ Downtown): Capirotada. ♥
  8. Blade’s Bistro (Placitas)
  9. Seasons Rotisserie and Grill (ABQ Old Town)

4 Responses to Hall of Fame

  1. Melissa says:

    Hi Larry,

    On our way to/fro the White Sands/Alamogordo area this past weekend, we tried GCCB at both Owl Bar & Cafe and Sparky’s. Owl Bar & Cafe was first on Saturday morning. We were the only people there. It was a great burger… but, we had Sparky’s late Monday afternoon on the drive home. Owl Bar, who? Sparky’s was one of the best burgers I’ve ever had! It may be sacrilege to say so, but I can take or leave green chili. I took it in both cases, and liked it, but burger vs. burger, Sparky’s just blew Owl Bar away. (Can’t hear, read, write or say the words Owl Bar without thinking of the prohibition era bar on the ground floor of the Belvedere in Mount Vernon. We loved a block away and I am a little “home”sick for that Owl Bar. It was our last minute “let’s get a drink” or “I can’t decide where to eat” place.)

    We are heading to Mary & Tito’s later today for some red chili something or other, maybe stuffed sopapillas. I love them at Sadie’s, which feels like a really pedestrian place, so I’m excited to try them somewhere a little more homey feeling.


  2. Doug says:

    Went to El Norteno Friday, July 5th, located on Wyoming and Montgomery in e NE. We came up from El Pao to meet friends who were traveling along I-40 so I was either looking for over the top food or an ostentatious environment. We got neither. We can get our fill of Mexican food in El Paso, but our friends hadn’t had good Mexican food in a long time. Because of the logistics, we opted for something close to the hotel (NE). We went to El Norteno. I was disappointed, though our friends (and my wife) did like the rellenos, though ey were a bit on the oily side. Our friends aren’t ones to complain and I think they we’re being polite because they trust my judgement and didn’t want to burst my bubble. One other couple accompanied us. I had the goat; the other couple had shrimp tacos -which were minitaure- and fish soup. I’m not sure what real Mexican is defined as, but this was a middle of the road meal that I could have gotten almost anywhere. The price was around $90 for the 8 of us. One person kept returning her food because it was cold, but in the restaurants defense she took her time eating (however, the restaurant should have served the food in hot plates, not cold ones; plus, when they reheated her soup, the shrimp became rubbery). Beans, rice, and salad were only token portions and unremarkable. They kept the chips and salsa coming, and refilled the drinks without asking. The salsa was good as it should be for the region. I guess my biggest complaint about listing this as the best real Mexican is the lack of definition of real. It was an unremarkable meal. Places like this are a peso a dozen and if it closed, it wouldn’t be missed.

  3. Edwina says:

    You need to try the GCCB’s at the “66 Pit Stop” located at 14311 Central Ave NW
    Albuquerque, NM 87121 across from the 66 Casino. GREAT BURGER!!!!

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