Buckhorn Saloon – Pinos Altos, New Mexico

The Buckhorn Saloon

In 1859, 49ers returning home from California discovered gold 7000 feet above sea level among the tall pines (Pinos Altos) north of Silver City. Rampant lawlessness, an anything goes attitude in the pursuit of gold and frequent raids by marauding Apaches made prospectors lives exciting to say the least.

The Buckhorn Saloon, circa 1985, offered respite and sustenance in the form of alcohol, entertainment and food, three things still available in this true Old West town. Walk into the saloon and you’re magically transported almost 150 years back in time.

The ambience remains seemingly unchanged as reflected in dim lighting, velvet curtains, wood beamed ceilings and other accoutrements of the day. The menu is more contemporary, featuring seafood, USDA choice steaks and salads, soups and homemade desserts. Libations include Sioux City sarsaparilla, one of the creamiest root beer drinks available anywhere.

To remain consistent with our Old West surroundings, Kim and I both had steaks. The Porterhouse steak is easily an inch and a half thick and prepared with salt, pepper and garlic. It was juicy and succulent with just a hint of pink when ordered medium. At medium well the New York steak isn’t nearly as juicy, but is still highly flavorable. The warm bread has a hint of honey and is served in small loaves.

Order your salad with the ranch dressing and you’ll be asking the wait staff why they haven’t bottled and sold it. It’s rich, creamy and tastier than commercial offerings. Also quite good is the chicken noodle soup which is made with thick egg noodles and white chicken with a broth so savory, it would be criminal to add crackers. The menu includes several homemade desserts but unless you have two stomachs, you probably won’t have room for them.

When done with your meal, stagger on over to the adjacent Old Opera Melodrama playhouse for a raucous evening of revelry and fun. The Opera’s Western plays are bawdy and bodacious with just enough double-entendre to make them more appropriate for adults than children. Pinos Altos has other attractions which make it a must stop in the Land of Enchantment’s wild and history laden Southwest quadrant.

Buckhorn Saloon
Main Street
Pinos Altos, New Mexico
(575) 538-9911
LATEST VISIT: 17 April 2004
# OF VISITS: 1
RATING: 19
COST: $$$
BEST BET: Porterhouse Steak, New York Steak, Sarsaparilla

About Gil Garduno

Since 2008, the tagline on Gil’s Thrilling (And Filling) Blog has invited you to “Follow the Culinary Ruminations of New Mexico’s Sesquipedalian Sybarite.” To date, nearly 1 million visitors have trusted (or at least visited) my recommendations on nearly 1,100 restaurant reviews. Please take a few minutes to tell me what you think. Whether you agree or disagree with me, I'd love to hear about it.

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2 Comments on “Buckhorn Saloon – Pinos Altos, New Mexico”

  1. I was visiting my parents in Silver City for Christmas and we went to the Buckhorn for dinner this past Thursday. I am pleased to say that the Buckhorn is back! Good food, nice wine list, and very good service for a small town the day after Christmas! New menu additions like roast chicken with green chile and Mediterranean-style cod are welcome. Cheers!

  2. Hi Gil. On our Sun tour to Silver City CLAY took us here last night for
    a

    Fabulous dinner. New chef/owner. Check it out!
    Regards
    Mary Ann

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