Poppy’s Pizzeria & Italian Eatery – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

Chef-owner Mario D’Elia knew what he’d be in for when he named his new restaurant Poppy’s Pizzeria & Italian Eatery.  Legions of Seinfeld fans would undoubtedly joke  “Poppy’s a little sloppy,” a reference to Poppie, a restaurateur on the comedy Seinfeld who didn’t wash his hands after using the bathroom.  Sure enough,the jokes came…until the jokesters tasted the seriously outstanding

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Guaca Guaca Tacos & Beer – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

What culinary voluptuaries consider exotic and delicious, timorous eaters might find distasteful and even nauseating. With M.F.K Fisher as their muse, culinary voluptuaries–the truly adventurous diners among us–don’t let themselves be drawn into a vortex of memories recalling foods they’ve already experienced. Instead, they live with carpe diem engraved on their hearts, ever in pursuit of their next culinary epiphany,

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Triple B’s Bar-B-Que Burgers & Burritos – Rio Rancho, New Mexico (CLOSED)

Archaeologists in Spain claim to have unearthed the original man cave. What is most remarkable about this finding is how very similar Neanderthal man and contemporary man are. Men, it could be said, have not evolved much. Neanderthals were hairy and brutish in appearance, very much like the New York Giants and Philadelphia Eagles. They spoke in guttural grunts, similar

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California Pastrami & More – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

During a 1997 episode of Seinfeld, the “show about nothing,” George Costanza and his girlfriend du jour discussed the possibility of incorporating food into their lovemaking–not as a post-coital meal, but in flagrante delicto. George listed as potential food candidates: strawberries, chocolate sauce, honey and…pastrami on rye with mustard. Yes, that’s pastrami on rye. His girlfriend, unfortunately, failed to appreciate

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The Burger Stand – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

“If you need good hot grillin’, Try my burger stand. If you need a slice of thrillin’, I’m the baddest in the land. Any way you want it baby, I am your burger man.” ~Burger Man by ZZ Top Those of us invited on occasion to judge competitive food events try to follow a few very sensical but ironclad rules

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Backstreet Grill – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

Old Town Albuquerque. Locals love it. We appreciate its unique architecture and have tremendous affection for its character and personality. We hold its religious celebrations in reverence and admire the passion with which its secular fiestas are celebrated. We delight in reminding “colonists” that it’s older than many New England cities which dominate history books. Old Town is where we

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The Safari Grill – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

“The wild dogs cry out in the night As they grow restless longing for some solitary company I know that I must do what’s right Sure as Kilimanjaro rises like Olympus above the Serengeti I seek to cure what’s deep inside, frightened of this thing that I’ve become.” ~ Africa by Toto Shrouded in mist and steeped in myth and

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P’Tit Louis Bistro – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

“If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast.” –Ernest Hemingway I’ve often wondered if Ernest Hemingway would have felt at home in Taos during the “roaring twenties,” a period of dynamic artistic, societal and

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Stripes Biscuit Co. – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

Southern humorist Jerry Clower once quipped “One of the saddest things is the sound of them whomp biscuits being opened in more and more houses these days. Whomp! Another poor man is being denied homemade biscuits. No wonder the divorce rate is so high.” There’s more than a bit of underlying truth to Clower’s humor. Southerners take their biscuits seriously.

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Cafe Laurel – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

“To anyone else,” my Kim joked “the name Café Laurel is just a cute name probably chosen because the owners like laurel leaves. To you the name has to mean something.” She reminded me of the hours I spent dissecting former President Bill Clinton’s statement “It depends upon what the meaning of the word “is” is.” “You’re too literal. You

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Pho Lao – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

One definition of audacity is “the state of being bold or daring—particularly with disregard for danger, rudeness or pressure.” Audacity is nine-year-old fourth grader Akilan Sankaran (son of my friend Sridevi) unflinchingly spelling such words as “rejoneador” and “mnemonic” to win the New Mexico Spelling bee over eighth graders who’d participated in the annual event as many as six times.

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Filling Philly’s – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

In 2008, Philadelphia, which translates from Greek to “the City of Brotherly Love” was named by Forbes Magazine as America’s fifth most miserable city, a ranking based on such factors as tax rates, commute times, violent crime, unemployment and weather. The city’s sports fans, in particular, are notorious for their “lack of fraternal affection,” mercilessly turning on even their own

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Canvas Artistry – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

“Edible art” isn’t just some trite phrase pedantic food critics use when food has aesthetic values that delight our senses. Mankind has been been intrigued by the concept of food as art since the dawning of rational thinking. Prehistoric cave paintings such as those in Les Trois Frères in Ariège, in southern France, depict families gathering around the fire to

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Kelly’s Brew Pub – Albuquerque, New Mexico

“If you ever plan to motor west Travel my way, take the highway that’s the best A-get your kicks on Route sixty-six It winds from Chicago to LA More than two thousand miles all the way Get your kicks on Route sixty-six.” ~Nat King Cole With a population of approximately 30,000, Albuquerque had just about as many people in 1939

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Great Fortune Chinese Restaurant – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

According to the Chinese Restaurant News, a respected trade publication, there are now approximately 36,000 Chinese restaurants in America.  That’s nearly three times as many Chinese restaurants as there are McDonald’s franchises.  That’s more than the number of McDonald’s, Wendy’s and Burger King franchises combined. No longer considered exotic, Chinese restaurants are part of the fabric of American culture. There

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La Placita Dining Rooms – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

For convenience, if not for fiery New Mexico authenticity, you can’t beat La Placita, a yawning restaurant housed in the historic Casa de Armijo hacienda on Old Town Plaza. The Casa de Armijo was built in 1706 and occupied for many generations by the prominent Armijo family. Over the course of its three hundred year existence, the three foot thick

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