Taste what’s in season at Aceq, a new addition to the local dining scene which serves southwestern-inflected comfort food in a quirky dining room with mismatched chairs. Try the chili-glazed lamb ribs ($6) and the crispy pork belly “chicharones” lettuce wrap ($8), both sourced from northern New Mexico producers, or one of the signature vegetarian dishes like a beet roulade with spiced lentils and pickled kohlrabi ($12).
Gather around the fire pit as you wait for a table at Orlando’s, a colorful, hugely popular spot that specializes in northern New Mexican dishes. Be sure to order a dish with the state’s ubiquitous green chile, either in a customizable stew with posole and beans ($9) or served on top of tamales ($10), followed with a chocolate-dipped biscochito, an anise-flavored cookie that’s also a New Mexico specialty ($2.75).
Tuck into the cozy dining room at the Love Apple (cash only), a farm-centric restaurant housed in an old adobe chapel. Start with a bottle of sparkling wine from Albuquerque’s Gruet Winery ($30) or a glass from the wine list, featuring organic and sustainably farmed options, before launching into the menu. Try the apple and caramelized onion quesadilla with local Asadero cheese ($8) or grass-fed beef tacos constructed with homemade tortillas and green chile crème fraiche ($14).