Gil's Thrilling (And Filling) Blog

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Gil’s Highest Rated Restaurants

When asked “what’s your favorite restaurant?”, my answer is paradoxical: I have no favorite restaurant and hundreds of favorites. If asked “what’s the best restaurant,” my answer is similar. That attitude is pretty prevalent among adventurous diners who are always on the look-out for new restaurants to enjoy. When it comes to restaurants, I’m probably the least monogamous person you’ll ever meet. Any more than three or four visits in a year to any restaurant and restlessness sets in–no matter how outstanding the restaurant may be, I would rather be exploring a heretofore not previously visited restaurant, even if it’s not as good.

Still, it’s a pretty common compunction for writers to compile lists.  Please enjoy the “highest rated” lists on this blog with a caveat emptor (let the buyer beware).  These lists are subject to change based on the whims of a gastronome who’s always seeking out new dining adventures, uncovering new favorites and continuously looking for new ones.

  • O-U-8-1-2 says:

    Thank you for FINALLY posting the list of your highest rated restaurants. It’s nice to see there’s culinary greatness beyond Fanta Se.

    September 22, 2011 at 7:37 PM
  • Jim Millington says:

    I also thank you for posting your list and wholly agree with many of them, specifically Budai Gourmet Chinese, Cafe Dalat, La Boca, Los Potrillos, Torinos @ Home, Blades’s Bistro, Il Piatto Cocina Italiana, San Pedro Middle East Restaurant, Savoy Bar & Grill and Zinc Wine Bar & Bistro. I have visited most of the others but not all.

    There is an old saying to the effect that “Great minds think alike” but even minimal examination will reveal that the opposite is true, small minds think alike. Also I notice that you have not visited the Coyote Rooftop Cantina in some while. I think that a revisit may completely change your opinion. Most of you recommended choices (with which I agreed) have been removed from the menu and completely destroyed by recipe changes prior to removal.

    September 29, 2011 at 4:17 PM
  • Bruce Schor says:

    The latest IQ magazine listed their choices for ABQ dining and drinking.
    Frankly I don’t know who made the choices.
    It wasn’t, or doesn’t seem to be the public.
    It seems to be the editorial board or perhaps even the business department of the magazine.
    When Budai Gourmet is left off the Asian category but Guang Dong in Bernalillois listed as a “notable” there is something drastically wrong.
    Guong Dong is as consistent as Mitt Romney., flip flopping all over the place,
    Or let’s take it one step further, Guang Dong is the UNM Football team of Chinese Restaurants, less than mediocre and inconsistent.
    It seems like the editorial board went by the restaurants who were willing to shell out $450 to be in the issue.
    When the public votes for Blade’s Bistro as Most Romantic Dining Spot but the powers that be classifies it as no better than “notable” along with one of Corrales’ true gems, Indigo Crow, someone has been bought.
    I wish IQ had owned up to the way the selection process worked.
    It wasn’t by popular demand, that’s for sure.
    It’s a shame the visitors during Balloon Fiesta have the current IQ as a dining guide.

    October 3, 2011 at 10:00 AM
  • Rene Coronado says:

    Hola Gil and Kim,

    I hope you are well! I am hanging some chickens today. The first batch will be ready at about noon and the second at about 5:oo. Same marinade and brining process except slowly cooked over 100% mesquite charcoal. Peru is in Albuquerque for a short visit. Have a great day!

    December 17, 2011 at 11:41 AM
  • Suzanne Castillo Devlin says:

    Hi Gil

    I’m making my annual pilgrimage to Santa Fe again in late September.

    What I miss most in my lastseverak trips was not being able to buy bread baked in the hornos at Isleta. Some bread is sold outside the Pueblo but it’s not the same. Looked and tasted like bread machine bread and certainly not the same. I used to take a couple of dozen loaves home with me but sadly, no more. My grandmother Anita Avila had her own oven in Sabinal that I remember well growing up. The bread baked in the hornos was second to none. I’ve had bread purported to be the same at Taos Pueblo but it’s not the same. Is there anyone who still makes this bread the traditional way any where in New Mexico? I’ll drive a hundred miles from Santa Fe to buy it. Thanks! Suzanne Castillo Devlin born in Belen but now in Oregon.

    July 6, 2012 at 3:02 PM
    • Gil Garduno says:

      Hi Suzanne

      It’s so nice to hear from you again. The Land of Enchantment is just a bit more enchanting when you visit. Your timing couldn’t be better with the inimitable aromas of green chile roasting and autumn in the air.

      The good folks at Jemez Pueblo still bake and sell loaves of horno bread ($5) outside the Walatowa Visitor Center (575-834-7235). The drive through the Pueblo and onto Jemez Springs is one of the most scenic in New Mexico.

      Gil

      July 6, 2012 at 4:08 PM
  • Mara van der Pas says:

    Have you been to Joe’s in Santa Fe? I’ve heard wonderful things, but I haven’t tried it, yet, either. I’m particularly looking forward to trying their roast duck with sweet=sour red cabbage and spaetzle. Sounds wonderful. Joe’s uses locally-grown produce, when possible, too.

    December 20, 2012 at 8:01 AM
    • Gil Garduno says:

      Hello Mara

      Joe’s is on my short list, but it’s moved up with your description of roast duck with sweet and sour red cabbage and spaetzle. That does sound wonderful!

      Gil

      December 20, 2012 at 8:42 AM
      • Mara van der Pas says:

        You did it! You reviewed Joe’s in Santa Fe! I was going to go today, but it was supposed to snow. I live in Las Vegas, a LONG way from Santa Fe, especially in snow. I would have liked to try the roast goose. I guess they won’t have it after Christmas. Boo hoo. Mara van der Pas

        December 24, 2012 at 10:42 AM
      • Gil Garduno says:

        Hi Mara

        After your first email about Joe’s then having watched the 1938 version of A Christmas Carol in which the Cratchit family had roasted goose for Christmas, we were determined to have it, too. Unfortunately, the goose is available only for dinner.

        If you have an iPhone, you can download a Web application for Joe’s Dining which lists all daily specials for lunch and dinner. It’ll tell you when goose will be available again.

        I hope you have a blessed and merry Christmas!

        Gil

        December 25, 2012 at 9:34 AM
  • Suzie Queue says:

    Oh, and my favorite commenter is Bob of the Village and Bruce – but they need to quit fighting. It would be good if we could all go to lunch and have peace.

    December 23, 2013 at 11:27 PM
  • BOTVOLR says:

    1st of all Suzie: Thank Y’all & Blush.
    2ndly: Indeed a Kumbaya Lunch http://tinyurl.com/q2959s5 of All Commentors and Lurkers (folks who have great things to say but are hesitant)!!!
    3rdly and Alas re The Brute & I: As they say at Nosh, ‘If ya can’t say something nice, say it in Yiddish!’ and so, The Brute and I, possibly because of left unspecified/unnamed subterranean, interpersonal phobias best known by Herr Doktor Freud, are fated to wallow in the eddy….well the schtick… possibly exemplified in the interfacings of Indiana (Jones) and Marion…I being the Indie of the pair… such that as Doris Day might say: Que sera, sera!!!! Otherwise we might say: “Waiter!!! Oy Vey!!! what’s a matzo ball doing in my zuppa??!!!
    4th and most importantly: Thanks for bringing us your Glad Tidings, as we, well I, didn’t know of your challenging times…Ergo…a Prospero Ano Nuevo!

    WHOA! & The Schuyler!!! Those were Superb…not short of Exquisite! I hope you were The Bane of English school teachers who is now enjoying the spotlight of an appreciative audience. Seriously…do you do any gigs at the local Improv? Have you submitted to Leno before he’s gone?

    December 24, 2013 at 2:00 PM
  • Schuyler says:

    Thank you Bob of the Village People. Credit my comedic stylings to being the love child of Tiny Tim and Ruth Buzzi (hmm, that might also account for my prodigious proboscis). Nah, I’ve never played the Improv. I’m strictly a hack…as deadpan as Ben Stein, too. You and El Bruto, on the other hand, could be the next Martin and Lewis. Merry Christmas.

    December 24, 2013 at 9:42 PM
  • Bruce Schor says:

    BOTVOLR (Dino Martin) and I (Jerry Lewis) have this love/hate relationship and we very well might end up like the famous twosome but for now based on that love/hate relationship, Dino loves to make comments that I hate to have to read 4 and 5 times to decypher them.
    I’m only assuming the Lewis persona because he is still alive and it has nothing to do with being a Jew although Jews are much funnier than our other brothers.
    Schuyler, your post was very funny and has me believing you are SQ.
    Wouldn’t it be great if SQ was indeed BOTVOLR!!!!!
    An alter ego just for those of us who don’t know the meaning of “per” as written by Dino.
    I would enjoy dining with other commentators.

    December 24, 2013 at 10:33 PM

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