After a months-long spate of serving only dinner, Nob Hill hot spot Scalo is again serving lunch. The lunch menu, unlike Scalo's inventive dinner menu, does not offer dishes grouped by size (small, medium or large plates). Instead, it is a brief and modest menu that is so affordably priced even the most frugal diner couldn't complain about the bill. A bowl of gazpacho with peeky toe crab costs only $6, a housemade sausage sandwich with bell peppers, onions, mozzarella and Napa cabbage slaw runs only $9 and the fried chicken club with penne pasta salad is a reasonable $8. Stop by and check it out Tuesday through Friday from 11:30 a.m. until 2 p.m.
The Westside's first Indian restaurant, Bombay Grill, opened for business last month. The place is located at 3600 Alameda, west of Coors (near Hooters!) and serves lunch and dinner. A quick call to the restaurant confirmed that they do serve both meals every day of the week and indeed, every day of the year. That's right, the owners intend to be open every single day. A representative told me the only day they would consider closing is Super Bowl Sunday. Apparently there is a big market for Indian food on Christmas, New Year's and Thanksgiving but not on the biggest TV-watching day of the year.
If you've ever been to El Farol in Santa Fe (808 Canyon Road) then you'll be interested to know that the chef of the Spanish-themed restaurant, James Campbell Caruso, has just published his first cookbook. This Saturday afternoon from 1 to 5 p.m., the chef will be at Gruet Winery (8400 Pan American), passing out samples of some of the recipes in El Farol: Tapas and Spanish Cuisine and signing copies of the book. Of course there will also be Gruet wines to go with the food. Having been to a similar event this week I have only this advice: pray to your god that Caruso brings his little grilled chorizos. The event is free. Check out the Alibi next week for some recipes from the book.
If you're into beer, especially drinking beer with food, you should check out Trumer Pils, an Austrian beer now being imported to only seven American cities, including Albuquerque. Trumer comes from a 400 year-old family run brewery of the same name and is available only in restaurants, including Graze, Zinc, Scalo, Ranchers Club, Monte Vista Fire Station, Artichoke Café and Le Café Miche. Wine people can think of Pilsner as the beer equivalent of a crisp Sauvignon Blanc. Light, bright and hoppy with aggressive bubbles, the beer is quite refreshing on its own and an excellent partner to food. I think it's the perfect match for fried chicken.