Alibi V.28 No.41 • Oct 10-16, 2019 

Best of Burque Restaurants 2019

Breakfast

Best Huevos Rancheros

The Shop Breakfast and Lunch

The Shop Breakfast and Lunch is about to be on here entirely too much, so let’s get the big praise in now and focus on how we’re going to talk about them a thousand more times later. The Shop Breakfast and Lunch is one of those spots that is just dominant in everything they do. The food is good, the spot is just off the beaten path enough that they aren’t swarmed by a bunch of loud crowds, it’s got a hip attitude and their huevos rancheros are to die for. Still not convinced that The Shop Breakfast and Lunch is amazing? Keep reading on. The votes tell the story here.

2) Barelas Coffee House

3) The Range Cafe

Best Breakfast Burrito

Golden Pride

Golden Pride was a shoe-in to win here. There has nary been a moving day or other early morning get-together that didn’t start at Golden Pride. The running joke of giving one person a bunch of numbers to go order isn’t even a weird inside joke here; it’s just that every person knows what they want—Number 11, by the way, since I’m sure you were wondering. Is there anything specific that makes them so above and beyond exceptional? No, and in a way, that is their strength. Much like Dion’s, accessibility is the key here, and it’s hard to ruin a breakfast burrrito so long as you stick to the core pieces and do them well. Keep on keepin’ the city fed, Golden Pride.

2) Blake's Lotaburger

3) The Shop Breakfast and Lunch

Best Pancakes

Weck's

Weck’s is the poster child of breakfast. With enormous portions, quality food, friendly staff and a coffee pot that is inexplicably never empty—is black magic the name of the roast or the work that goes into keeping that pot full with 100 cups a minute being poured? Weck’s excels at breakfast in a way that no other restaurant seems to capture for time-based meals. You’ll always find what you’re looking for on their menu, ranging from the right meal for having breakfast with your family to the exact meal necessary to cure your worst hangover. (That meal happens to be gigantic pancakes drenched in equally gigantic amounts of syrup.)

2) The Shop Breakfast and Lunch

3) The Range Café

The Shop
The Shop
Eric Williams Photography

Best Waffles

Tia B's La Waffleria

Tia B’s La Waffleria
Tia B’s La Waffleria
Dan Pennington

Tia B’s La Waffleria is hands down one of my favorite brunch places. It doesn’t even matter to me that there’s always a long line, in fact it just reinforces that I’m not alone in my love for their food. With a hefty list of sweet, savory and customizable waffle dishes, you’re never going to be left in the cold with a sub-par meal. I would list my favorites but the real issue is, I never order the same thing twice. It’s hard to not run rampant on their menu with the plethora of choices that all sound more mouth watering than the next, and why resign myself to a life of plain simplicity when I have complex flavors at my fingertips? I have yet to find a waffle-based dish I wouldn’t eat again, yet also have yet to find something I don’t want on their menu. Maybe one day I’ll finish eating my way through everything they offer. But until then, I’ll take it one waffle at a time.

2) The Shop Breakfast and Lunch

3) Tia Betty Blue's

Best French Toast

The Shop Breakfast and Lunch

I told you that The Shop Breakfast and Lunch was going to be on here a lot. Now they’re back with Best French Toast. This culinary delight of egg-soaked bread drenched in sweetness beyond the mind’s typical comprehension is probably my favorite breakfast food of all time, and The Shop Breakfast and Lunch does it perfectly. The bread is crispy but delicate, the decorating fruits ripe and fresh, the syrup the right temperature and viscosity, the plate gorgeous and the meal unmatched. Share your secrets with me, The Shop Breakfast and Lunch. I need to be able to replicate this at home for ... reasons.

2) Los Poblanos Historic Inn and Organic Farm

3) Tia Betty Blue's

Best Eggs

The Shop Breakfast and Lunch

The Shop Breakfast and Lunch also won for Best Eggs. That can mean a lot of things. Do they hunt down the best eggs from chickens? Is there a metaphorical golden goose within the farms of the city laying rich and wonderful eggs? Is there a physical golden goose laying physical golden eggs? Do goose eggs taste like chicken eggs? No, they don’t, and, also, geese are mean, horrible creatures bent on destruction. Maybe they just know how to cook an over-medium egg perfectly every time and can present the eggs without grease dripping off them. I’m sticking with my wild goose theory.

2) The Range Cafe

3) Weck's

Best Bacon

The Shop Breakfast and Lunch

The Shop Breakfast and Lunch won for Best Bacon, too. This can mean a lot of things. Do they hunt down the best bacon from pigs? Is there a metaphorical golden pig within the farms of the city shedding rich and wonderful bacon? Is there a physical golden pig shedding physical golden bacon? Do pigs shed bacon? No, they don’t, and also pigs are sweet, wonderful creatures bent on love and wallowing happily in the sun. Maybe they just know how to fry a slice of bacon perfectly every time and can present the bacon without grease dripping off it? There’s no goose or pig theory here. Bacon just rocks.

2) The Range Cafe

3) Frontier Restaurant

Best Healthy Breakfast

The Grove Cafe & Market

It’s the Grove Cafe—home to everyone’s least favorite “Breaking Bad” character and her damned Stevia. It’s also home to the best healthy breakfast, according to you, the voting populace. You know it’s a healthy spot because everyone eating there is wide awake and smiling at “way too early in the morning” o’clock and they look like they just finished jogging there but inexplicably didn’t sweat. Me? I drive over around 40 minutes before what most people consider “lunchtime” and still feel like a winner. I’m not gonna lose all those lovely calories by running them off. They’re gonna keep me powered all day. But in all seriousness, the food here is wonderful and deserving of this spot, because they care about both the quality and your health, which is never a bad thing.

2) The Shop Breakfast and Lunch

3) Flying Star Cafe

Best Coffee/Espresso

UNMH Espresso Cafe

Espresso Cafe
Espresso Cafe
Eric Williams Photography

I tried to wrap my head around this. The best coffee/espresso is at UNM Hospital’s Espresso Cafe. Is that because so many people frequent their baristas day to day in the hustle and bustle of the hospital? Is it that they give life to those giving life? Is there a secret coffee-growing garden hidden somewhere among the sprawling campus, powered by the good thoughts and energy pumping through those vaunted walls? The world may never know. But you all do, and that’s what matters. Your word, dearest readers, dictates the truths of this city, and apparently the truth is that they serve us a damn fine cup of coffee. Mayhaps I should have an accident so I can stop by for a cup myself?

2) Humble Coffee Company

3) The Shop Breakfast and Lunch

Best Tea

New Mexico Tea Company

Story time: Back in high school, my best friend and I started a Tea Club at Sandia High in 2006. What was meant to be a in-joke that earned us a letter for the jacket we’d never own ended up becoming a secret hit. Gathered in the back of the library, we’d highlight a new tea, handpicked by one of our members, once per week. I went to check on it a few years ago and was shocked to not only find it still going strong, but bigger than ever and with sponsorship by New Mexico Tea Company, who brought a new tea in to every meeting and went over the history, flavor profile, brewing method and more with members. They’re worthy of the top spot for this venture alone, though their massive selection and wide breadth of knowledge gives them another advantage, as well.

2) St. James Tearoom

3) UNMH Espresso Café

Best Brunch

The Shop Breakfast and Lunch

The Shop Breakfast and Lunch won Best Brunch. They’ve neatly nabbed the top spots in breakfast already, so it was kind of decided already, wasn’t it? The most important meal of any day starting with an S, brunch is made for hangover recovery with hangover-solving drinks and hangover-solving foods. I’m faced with the daunting task of writing about them a number more times, and the geese/pig bit is already tired and spent. Will I find the words to continually praise what has essentially been voted “Titans of Food” here in the city? Only time will tell. Onward and upwards.

2) Hannah & Nate's

3) Cinnamon Sugar & Spice Cafe

Best Biscuits

Stripes Biscuit Co.

Stripes Biscuit Company
Stripes Biscuit Company
Dan Pennington

Stripes Biscuit Co. was the obvious winner here. With freshly made biscuits every day, and creative use of biscuit dough to enhance and alter familiar dishes, Stripes is the truest innovator in the biscuit field here in the 505. Add to that the interior, decorated with decorated heroes of both the present and of days gone by, and you’re left with a meal that leaves you pensive and grateful. I did a review of them when I first started here, and I still go in from time to time, because I genuinely love their food. Plus they’re about a 30-second drive from my home.

2) The Shop Breakfast and Lunch

3) Cinnamon Sugar & Spice Cafe

Best Chicken Fried Steak

Vic's Daily Cafe

Vic's Daily Cafe has always been one of those places that just gets it. They know what breakfast can mean to people, and they don’t mess around with the tried and true formula. You want a good sandwich? Talk to Vic’s. You want a solid omelette? Vic’s. You want a chicken-fried steak that can fix your broken heart and heal your soul, leaving you a better person than when you started your meal? Hoo boy, you guessed it! Vic’s.

2) 66 Diner

3) The Range Cafe

Best Hash Browns/Homefries

Weck's

Weck's has the Best Hash because Weck's understands the importance of breakfast as an amalgamation of flavors coming together to create something new. Sometimes the best meal is everything in one place, something that a hash excels at. With the breadth of knowledge regarding breakfast perfection and the load-out of significant ingredients, you’re left with a hash worth writing home about. Plus, it’s so huge that you cannot find it unsuitable in any way. It’s more food than you can shake a stick at, as they say.

2) Frontier Restaurant

3) The Shop Breakfast and Lunch