Family trips bore out the fact that my parents had saintly patience as their six kids sat in the back seat of the station wagon and belted out, “Let’s all go to A&W. The food’s just great at A&W.”
As kids, we pestered our parents with Madison Avenue jingles for every fast food restaurant we knew. A&W was our favorite–and for good reason. In the 60s, before McDonalds began to dominate the fast food genre, A&W was THE drive-up restaurant in which to dine with more than 2000 locations across the country.
Today, A&W has been relegated in some places to sharing space with gas stations and convenience stores. It also received a reprieve of sorts when purchased by the Pepsi restaurant subsidiary which also owns KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell.
A&W and Long John Silvers were recent acquisitions and in Rio Rancho as in other locations across the fruited plain, they share space. In the 60s, A&W’s family concept included burgers named for every family demographic–the papa burger, mama burger, teen burger, baby burger and even a grandpa burger.
The Rio Rancho location serves several “deluxe” burgers with the deluxe bacon double cheeseburger and deluxe cheeseburger being my early favorites. With a charbroiled taste, they are easily superior to those served at the burger monarch restaurants. Alas, while the buns and patties may be heated, the burgers are dressed with seemingly straight out of the refrigerator lettuce, tomatoes and pickles…and is it just my imagination, or did A&W corner the market on tomato ends (the end pieces usually thrown away)?
While burgers and hot dogs may be readily available, what A&W will always be best known for is their frosty mug root beer, one of the best beverages in the world. It’s hard to get nostalgic about A&W’s current incarnation, but that root beer certainly brings back great memories of the days in which A&W was king.
A&W All American Food
1011 Rio Rancho Blvd
Rio Rancho, New Mexico
LATEST VISIT: 15 November 2005
# OF VISITS: 6
BEST BET: Deluxe Cheeseburger, Hot Dog, A&W Root Beer
2 thoughts on “A&W All American Food – Rio Rancho, New Mexico”
As I’m lost/forgetful, lest someone previously described where to get GR8 Strip Fried Clams (i.e. sans Bellies) in ABQ, I’m compelled to share this vision in lieu of the real thing (i.e. CAVEAT: porno). Red Robin used to have a “nice” side. Earlier this week, after a hiatus of many months, I gambled on Red Lobster’s…and lost! Despite what might be envisioned that might come from the A&W co-partnering with Long John Silvers on 528 in RR, they have the “best” facsimile to what would be (e.g. plumpy) to die for at Woodmen’s of Essex , MA http://www.woodmans.com/ where they were “invented”. As such, I just happened to run across this pornographic pic http://tinyurl.com/y7gr64xv of a plate of such Fried Clams at Woodmen’s , i.e. not just empty fried batter looking the same, along with an equally luscious looking, traditional Lobstaah Roll!
OMG, I salivated all over myself!
Having grown up in Aztec with one of the few remaining original drive-ins, I have to say that these new franchises that have popped up are just not the same. The food is not as good and nothing can really compare to drinking a root beer out of a frosty mug while sitting in you car and people watching. Also, the A & W on my side of town uses the same oil for their ajoining fish restaurant, so the fries taste like fish. If you’re ever on your way to Durango, check it out, after El Bruno’s of course.