There was a time–not that long ago, in fact–when Italian restaurants in New Mexico were dismissed as just “good for New Mexico,” but certainly not of the caliber of Italian eateries in more sophisticated, more cosmopolitan locales heavily populated by Italians. There are restaurants on my list below which wouldn’t have to take a backseat to any Italian restaurant anywhere! By clicking on the name of the restaurant for which you wish to know my opinion, you will be magically transported directly to my review of that restaurant.
|Restaurant||Location||Rating||Why It’s On The List|
|Torinos @ Home||Albuquerque||25||Put yourself in the hands of Maxime and Daniela Bouneou for transcendent Italian cuisine served in the lap of hospitality. One of the very best restaurants in New Mexico of any genre!
|Il Piatto||Santa Fe||24||A sumptuous seasonal menu of traditional and contemporary Italian dishes crafted with farm-fresh and innovative ingredients. Prix fixe prices make this gem affordable for everyone.|
|Joe’s Pasta House||Rio Rancho||24||New Mexico’s best “red sauce” Italian restaurant in the finest traditions of red sauce restaurants throughout the East Coast. This is the anti-Olive Garden in every respect!
|Cafe Bella Luca||Truth or Consequences||23||Bella Luca translates to “beautiful light,” a fitting name for a restaurant whose focus is on taste and balance of flavor, using pristine ingredients to enhance the individual flavors of each element.|
|Mangiamo Pronto||Santa Fe||23*|| A a little slice of Tuscany in Santa Fe with an espresso and wine bar reminiscent of Italy. Serving some of the very best Italian dishes in New Mexico for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
|M’Tucci’s Kitchina||Albuquerque||23||One of the very best restaurants launched in the Duke City in 2013, M’Tucci’s has a whimsical ambiance, but a very serious menu with excellent Italian cuisine masterfully executed by chef John Hass.|
|Nicky V’s Neighborhood Pizzeria
||Albuquerque||23||Contrary to its name, outstanding pizza is just one of many magnificent menu items you’ll enjoy. Orvietto pasta is one of the very best pasta dishes to be found west of Italy itself.
|Terra Bistro Italiano||Albuquerque||23||Chef-owner Peter Lukes does triple duty as chef, baker and pastry chef and he manages to concoct some of the best Italian deliciousness in New Mexico. His bread would put most bakeries to shame.
|Paisano’s||Albuquerque||22||Paisano’s pays attention to the details, the real difference makers. Preparing made-from-scratch fresh pasta, veal, fish, poultry and beef in the traditional Italian ways, Paisano’s is also famous for its soul-warming soup.
|Limonata Trattoria||Albuquerque||22*||In the spirit of the true and authentic Italian trattoria, Limonata’s menu focuses on housemade pastas, fresh and locally sourced vegetables and produce, fine cheeses and delicious antipastos. Best of all, it’s brought to you by Maxime and Daniela Bouneau of Torinos @ Home.|
|Scalo Northern Italian Grill||Albuquerque||22
||Serving Albuquerque since December, 1986, Scalo’s menu is influenced by seasonal harvests. A Duke City pioneer in using locally grown organic produce, this restaurant continues to garner accolades.
|Osteria d’Assisi||Santa Fe||21||Osteria, the Italian word for a humble restaurant where wine and tasty food are served, is an understatement. This osteria is renown for its regional Italian cuisine, utilizing the “Mediterranean” approach to its culinary preparation.|