Albuquerque is busting at the seams with new eating spots. I salivate whenever I see a chain-link fence with a wind-whipped banner shouting, “Opening Soon!” But on the hunt for recently opened eateries, I also found an established treasure or two.
Pastoral paintings of thoughtful, grass-chomping cows adorn the red walls of Albuquerque’s brand-new designer burger joint, bRgR. The restaurant’s lineup of burger names could double as the course catalog of a tantric yoga ashram, including (in order of the stages of spiritual growth) the Harmonic, Elation, Euphoria, Jubilation, Ecstasy, Nirvana and, finally, Enlightenment. The beef, which is grass-fed and grain-finished, comes from Heritage Ranch, a national beef company that matches local beef producers with consumers, state by state.
If you had to pick a single Albuquerque street on which to dine for the rest of your life, you could do worse than Fourth. The diversity of restaurants on this North Valley artery is matched by a uniform unpretentiousness, as if by some silent but Spanglish-speaking truce. Dennis Apodaca has built a restaurant empire on a single half-mile stretch of that pavement. First came Sophia’s Place, named after his daughter. Then came Ezra’s Place, named after his son. And finally Jo’s Place, named after his mom, joined the block party in March.
Last week I explained the new direction this review column is taking, including the fact that I’ll no longer be eating or writing about mystery meat. There are many shades of mystery, and this simple-sounding mandate was tested numerous times during my first attempt to follow it at Five Star Burgers—with tasty results.
Maybe you already heard, but the patriotically decorated Independence Grill shut its doors on Sunday, March 14. Here’s the goodbye post from near midnight on the locally owned restaurant’s Facebook page:
So that's all she wrote folks! Thank you so much for your support of our risky business venture this last year and a half. We have so many memories. Sadly, we have closed up shop tonight and will miss you all. :( We wish more than anyone that we could have made our little Indy Grill a lasting success.
It may have been kind of sudden, as earlier in the day at around 4:30 p.m., the grill posted:
I have to say...I finally expanded and tried our Revolutionary Burger yesterday with the Raspberry Chipotle Sauce, cream cheese, and pineapple slaw and have been wondering why I haven't had on every day for the last year! You should DEFINITELY make today the day to try one.