Pizza Barn – Edgewood, New Mexico

The Pizza Barn in Edgewood

I love my pizza so much,
in fact, that I have come to believe in my delirium that
my pizza might actually love me, in return.
I am having a relationship with this pizza, almost an affair.
Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love

Wikipedia describes the 2010 biographical romantic novel Eat Pray Love as “a journey around the world that becomes a quest for“…pizza. Okay, I took some literary liberties with the “pizza” thing.  What author Elizabeth Gilbert was actually in pursuit of was “self-discovery.”  Pizza….Self-discovery.  Isn’t that pretty much the same thing?  In her travels, Elizabeth went all the way to Italy to discover the art of pleasure, a significant aspect of which is the hedonistic, indulgent joy of eating pizza, pasta, gelato and other treasure troves of absolute deliciousness prepared as they can only be prepared in Bel Paese

Thankfully denizens of the Duke City don’t have to cross an ocean to partake of the joys of eating very good, if not life-altering pizza.  A recent comment from Jackie suggested such pizza might be found as nearby as Edgewood, just east of the Sandia Mountains.  I realize some people approach a journey beyond the Sandias with the same trepidation as the Starship Enterprise approaching the Neutral Zone, but for great pizza I would argue that even Captain Kirk and Mr. Spock would defy Federation dictates and violate the Neutral Zone Treaty.  It’s only logical.

Among the Accoutrements of This Barn: A Hay Cart

My own reason…er, excuse for not having ventured across the final frontier east of the Sandias to explore great big pizza, seek out new pork rib tips and boldly go where no restaurant critic has gone before… was that my Kim and I were looking in another galaxy.  Jackie noted that the Pizza Barn in Edgewood “made the list of the 10 Best Pizza places in New Mexico by several years running, by the Best Things New Mexico website.”  Not only did Pizza Barn make I Am New Mexico‘s list, it made the list at number one–the best of the top 20 New Mexico pizza joints.

Perusing I Am New Mexico further, what the site was actually evaluating was “a slice of New Mexico’s heavenly green chile pizza.”  Further, I Am’s compilation of the “top 20 best pizza parlors in New Mexico” is three years old.  As pizza paramours know, a lot can change in three years.  Other than a picture and a Google map, the site didn’t provide any explanation as to why Pizza Barn earned such a lofty distinction.  Nor did Jackie.  Thankfully, my friend Captain Tuttle who visited Pizza Barn a couple of years ago remembered it as “being pretty good – the pizza anyway, as we didn’t have anything else. Good crust, just the right thickness, and cheesy.”

The Cavernous Dining Room

You don’t need the navigational skills of Starfleet’s most accomplished engineer Montgomery “Scotty” Scott to find Pizza Barn.   All you’ve got to do is point your own shuttle craft east and get off on the Edgewood exit.  You can’t miss the big red barn nestled under a canopy of pine trees.  Sure, big red barns are much more common in Nebraska or Iowa, but they’re not necessarily out-of-place in New Mexico.  At least not this one.  Besides, it’s pretty charming.  The interior is comfy and cozy with plenty of booth seating.  There’s even dog-friendly outdoor seating though you probably don’t want to visit on a 43-degree day as we did.

True to the name on the marquee, pizza is the big red barn’s raison d’être though the menu also lists calzones, bread sticks, green chile bread sticks, zucchini, pork rib tips, buffalo wings, cinnamon sticks, salads and more. There are some two dozen specialty pizzas on that menu as well as a Barn special with five toppings of your choice.  Both the Barn special and the cheese pizza are available in fourteen- and sixteen-inch sizes as well as a ten-inch personal pizza size.  The specialty pizzas are all sixteen-inches.

Pork Rib Tips

Several months ago, my friend Tom Molitor, our resident walking Wikipedia and sage sommelier lamented that it “continues to be my destiny to remain on an Arthurian journey searching for the Holy Grail of BBQ – rib tips.”  Neither of us knew at the time that he had but to cross the Sandias to find the ribs for which he yenned.  Yes, Bob, the Pizza Barn offers an appetizer sized portion of pork rib tips, six tender, smoked, fall-off-the-bone beauties slathered in barbecue sauce.  Sure, there’s a bit of cartilage to navigate around, but the rib tips themselves are quite good.

It’s impossible to know whether or not Elizabeth Gilbert would consider the Pizza Barn’s pizza a pie with which she’d have a relationship, maybe even an affair.  At the very least, she’d probably enjoy a slice or three.  My Kim ordered the specialty pizza named for the country which taught Elizabeth about the joys of eating–The Italiano (roasted garlic, feta cheese, Italian sausage, fresh mushrooms and sliced Roma tomatoes).  In all honesty, the ingredient which prompted this particular pizza choice was the roasted garlic which she loves in quantities sufficient to ward off a family of vampires.  She quickly discarded all the Roma tomatoes.  The pizza is somewhere between thin and thick, crispy and soft, leaning more to the “right-sized” thickness Captain Tuttle described.  My Kim, who’s not a fan of the “char is a flavor” pies so prevalent among purveyors of supermodel thin “new-age” pizza, loved the light char on The Italiano.  Me, I loved that this pizza was actually better for breakfast than it was for lunch.  There’s a lot to be said for pizza that tastes better the day after.  It may not top my own “best pizza in New Mexico” list, but it’s reason enough to visit Edgewood again.

The Italiano

The Pizza Barn may be on the other side of the mountain, but it should be on the radar for everyone in their own quest for a slice of paradise.

The Pizza Barn
11 Plaza Loop
Edgewood, New Mexico
(505) 286-2700
Website | Facebook Page
LATEST VISIT: 23 November 2019
# OF VISITS: 1
RATING: N/R
COST: $$
BEST BET: The Italiano, Pork Rib Tips
REVIEW #1139

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, more than 1 million visitors have trusted (or at least visited) my recommendations on nearly 1,200 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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10 Comments on “Pizza Barn – Edgewood, New Mexico”

  1. Far and Wide online magazine just named Cafe Rio in Ruidoso the best pizza in New Mexico specifically mentioning the “Kitchen Sink” pizza that includes just about every animal product imaginable plus (yikes!) pineapple. Does everyone agree?

    1. I’ve been hearing about Cafe Rio’s amazing pizza for years, but have yet to visit. One has to wonder how Far & Wide, a digital media company based out of San Francisco, knows so much about pizza in New Mexico.

      The Food Network’s choice for New Mexico’s best slice is Back Road Pizza out of Santa Fe.

      The Daily Meal believes New Mexico’s best pizza comes from Il Vicino while Money Magazine contends New Mexico’s best pie comes from Straight Up Pizza.

      While internet media companies wax lyrical about restaurants, Albuquerque The Magazine readers “best of the city” choice for 2019 was Village Pizza out of Corrales. At least this choice was made by locals who have actually tried the pizza.

      There are many ways to adjudge “best,” but I know of only one pizza purveyor who’s earned that lofty title in the field of competition. In 2017 at the 33rd annual International Pizza Expo, the largest gathering of pizza professionals in the world with more than 7,000 in attendance from 36 countries, Forghedaboudit from Deming placed first in the Southwest region, second in the United States and fourth in the world in the traditional pizza category. The International Pizza Expo is considered the best pizza-making competition in North America–the pinnacle of pizza.

      1. Well I haven’t been to Cafe Rio or Forghedaboudit and look forward to going to either of them some day. My current ABQ metro favorite is M’Tucci’s (cafe not the main restaurant).

        I don’t judge a book by its cover but I do judge a pizza by its crust. Not that toppings aren’t important to me, but, toppings are more of a subjective preference than crust. What I love about M’Tucci’s crust is its wood-fired dough made with a house-curated sourdough starter yeast not a commercial yeast.

        At the end of the day, there are two kinds of pizza to consider: those stiff enough to pick up with your hands and those you can’t. The former I prefer and the latter I will leave to the Domino’s customer.

  2. My go to Pizza place anywhere in the country. I travel quite a bit and just love this pizza. I eat pizza in New York, Chicago and anywhere they are famous for Pizza and I keep Pizza Barn as my number 1 pizza place. The best part is the crust is something you actually want to eat when eating an entire slice. You don’t want to just leave the edge on your plate. You want to eat it all. Nothing better than pizza and beer and this place has the best of both.

  3. There is a 13th-century carving at City Hall in Cologne, Germany, which depicts the “Nine Worthies” – legendary personages who personify the ideals of chivalry established in the Middle Ages. King Arthur is one of the Worthies – and I nominate our roving gourmand, Sir. Gil, to be the “Tenth Worthy” for finding pork rib tips in the Land of Enchantment (renamed the “Land of Enhancement”) now that we have access to the Holy Grail of BBQ – pork rib tips – in the greater ABQ metro.

    I do, however, take slight umbrage at our newly Knighted gourmand’s advice to “work around the cartilage.” Evolution gave us molars in order to address pork rib cartilage with all the efficacy of a junk yard car crushing machine. Pit bulls and rib tip lovers have known this for some time now.

    1. Couldn’t agree more, Thomas.

      I’ve been given more than my share of odd looks when I’m crunching away on the end of ribs, or hot wings! My sister-in-law once asked if I was eating the bone of my wing…I told her it was just the cartilage… I’d eat the bone too (after all, that chicken gave its life for you to enjoy it), but humans haven’t developed the ability to digest bone yet…:-).

  4. Wow, thanks Gil! I didn’t expect a response so quickly and I appreciate you for checking out The Pizza Barn. It’s our favorite local, casual style pizza place. Also, I agree with your Kim about the “char is not a flavor” thing!

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