Rambling through the eateries of Albuquerque
By Ty Bannerman
Winning Coffee via Facebook
Food trucks and breweries have long had a symbiotic relationship in this town, but it's much rarer to find a truck regularly parked right next to a restaurant. But that's the case at 218 Marble NW, where the Blunt Bros. Coffee truck is nestled up beside New Mexican mainstay Papa Frank's Sandwiches and Burritos. Hailing from Gallup (where a Blunt Bros. drive thru stand has made some waves), baristo/owner Dave is a pretty caffeinated guy who clearly takes his coffee very, very seriously. The menu has a full roster of coffee drinks, including some interesting takes on the London fog (the Navajo fog, for instance, uses Navajo tea instead of Earl Grey). And as for all this talk of "blunts," well, for now, the Bros. are apparently happy to just serve coffee and espresso, but as Dave puts it, "Once they pass a marijuana law, we're adding to our menu at 12:01am!"
And as for all this talk of "blunts," well, for now, the Bros. are apparently happy to just serve coffee and espresso, but as Dave puts it, "Once they pass a marijuana law, we're adding to our menu at 12:01am!"
Papa Frank's is also something of a revelation, to me at least. I'd walked/stumbled by a few times as I went back and forth to Marble Brewery back in my Downtown living days, but I'd never actually realized it was still a functional restaurant. Indeed, it's going strong just as it has for the last 15 years. With only a few tables and a reliance on styrofoam plates, it's definitely a joint for serving the to-go crowd, but if there's a table free, the sunny front porch and the transcendent red chile make for one of the best breakfasts around. Not to mention the nearby expertly brewed coffee.
Meanwhile, closer to the university, Winning Coffee Co. has launched what owner Sandy Timmerman is calling "the Great Eggsperiment." A desire to go local is often at odds with a desire to keep costs down, and since adding locally sourced eggs to the menu is bound to add a few bucks to everyone's breakfast, Timmerman has decided to put the choice in the hands of her customers. Café-mongers are literally voting with their dollars at the register, choosing a breakfast burrito at regular price with conventional eggs or upping the ante, and the price by a dollar or so, with some gifts from the hens at Flying E Ranch. As of press time, Timmerman says that the local eggs are coming out ahead. “They’ll definitely have a place here in the future,” she says.
Just across the street from Winning, Kai's Chinese Restaurant, that longtime savior of impoverished students with a burning desire, nay, a need for sweet and sour sauce and an egg roll, is undergoing an extensive renovation. No word on what may be happening inside the dragon-painted cinder block building, but with its reopening scheduled for Friday, Aug. 1, we'll find out soon enough.
If you have some info on a newly opened, closed or remodeled restaurant, food truck or bar, or if you just think I need to know about the latest menu item at your favorite eatery, or if there’s anything else food related on your mind, drop me a line at Ty@Alibi.com and make sure you include “quick bites” as your subject line.
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