Nowadays, life zips along at an increasingly fast pace. However, good food isn’t something that should be rushed. There’s nothing like the simple pleasure of savoring a meal at a homey restaurant to make you feel nostalgic. When you’re in the mood for something that soothes your soul, head to these 11 eateries for a hearty dose of comfort food.
1. Abuelita’s New Mexican Kitchen, Bernalillo
When you dine at a place with “grandma” in the name you’re primed to receive comfort food, and Abuelita’s New Mexican Kitchen doesn’t disappoint. The restaurant, which has been in business for 25 years, cooks up succulent carne adovada and stellar chile rellenos. The signature dish here is the tacopilla, a sopaipilla folded like a taco and stuffed with the same type of ingredients. Abuelita’s New Mexican Kitchen is located at 621 S Camino del Pueblo in
2. Chaos Café, Artesia
Chaos Café is a low key joint that serves downhome dishes. Whether you’re drawn to the pancakes at breakfast or a burger at lunchtime, you’re sure to leave satisfied. This restaurant can be found at 501 S 1st Street in Artesia.
3. Watson’s BBQ, Tucumcari
You can’t help but feel nostalgic when you eat at Watson’s BBQ. The restaurant is inside a general mercantile store that brims with kitsch and nods to Route 66, which runs through Tucumcari. Standouts on the menu here include brisket, ribs, and sausage. The restaurant is located at 502 S Lake Street in Tucumcari.
4. Mannie’s Family Restaurant, Albuquerque
Mannie’s Family Restaurant first opened in 1965 and it’s been going strong ever since. The restaurant serves all day breakfast (with perfectly crunchy hash browns) and other hearty fare like biscuits and gravy and steak dinners. Mannie’s is at 2900 Central Avenue SE in Albuquerque.
5. Becky's Drive-in, Carlsbad
Going to a drive-in is the ultimate retro dining experience. Becky’s is authentic, staffed by carhops that attach a tray to your car window. Feast on burgers and corn dogs as you enjoy this blast from the past. The address is 901 W Church Street in Carlsbad.
6. Aurelia’s Diner, Gallup
This diner temporarily transports you to the 1950s, with its vinyl seating, chrome accents, and juke box. As you’d expect, the shakes and root beer floats are excellent, the pancakes are always a hit at breakfast, and the Mexican dishes are delicious as well. The restaurant can be found at E Historic Highway 66, Gallup.
7. Joe’s Pasta House, Rio Rancho
Pasta is the ultimate comfort food and Joe draws on his Italian roots and his grandmother’s recipes to craft traditional Italian dishes. From ziti to lasagna, the food exceeds expectations. Unsurprisingly, the restaurant has received numerous accolades for its pasta and tiramisu. To dine here, head to 3201 Southern Boulevard SE in Rio Rancho.
8. Frank’s Famous Chicken and Waffles, Albuquerque
Chicken and waffles are the perfect comforting combination. Warning: you’ll quickly become addicted to the pairing of waffles with cinnamon butter. Save room for peach cobbler or pie. Frank’s is located at 513 San Mateo Boulevard NE in Albuquerque.
9. The Yesterday’s Diner, Red River
Eating at Yesterday’s Diner is just plain fun. This place is old school, both in terms of décor and the dishes, which are named after characters from vintage movies like “Grease” and shows like “Happy Days.” Pair a Rizzo salad or Potsy Burger with a Bloody Mary. The burritos are also insanely good. This diner is located at 612 W Main Street in Red River.
10. A Bite of Belgium, Las Cruces
Order the Bavarian cream waffles for a culinary experience you’ll be raving about for months. With cream like this, you don’t even need syrup. A Bite of Belgium can be found at 741 N Alameda Street,
Suite 16, in Las Cruces.
11. The Bavarian, Taos Ski Valley
Teleport to the Old World with the authentic German cooking for which the Bavarian Lodge is renowned. Try the sausage plate, the Wienerschnitzel, or the Jägerschnitzel. The restaurant is located at 100 Kachina Road in Taos Ski Valley.
Have you eaten at any of these spots? Which restaurant gives you a pang of nostalgia?