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  • El Pinto

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El Pinto
El Pinto

El Pinto Details

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.elpinto.com/
  • Email: elpinto@elpinto.com
  • Phone: (505) 898-1771
  • Hours of Operation:
    Lunch: Monday - Saturday: 11:00am - 5:00pm.
    Dinner: Sunday - Thursday: 5:00pm - 9:00pm, Friday - Saturday: 5:00pm - 10:00pm.
    Sunday Brunch: 10:30am - 2:00pm.
  • Payment Options: AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
  • Cuisine: Mexican / Southwestern, Mexican
  • Executive Chef: Patrick Hancock
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Entertainment, Farm to Table, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Takeout, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Alameda Blvd NW
  • Parking: Private Lot
  • Parking Details: Ample parking available on site for individuals and tour buses.
A word from El Pinto
Nestled in the ancient cottonwoods in the North Valley of Abq, El Pinto was founded with eight tables in 1962. Twin brothers John and Jim Thomas carry on the family tradition and have expanded El Pinto into the quintessential "Spot" for healthy and fresh made New Mexican cuisine. Come experience an authentic Taste of New Mexico.

Freshness is throughout El Pinto with the cuisine made from scratch each morning. El Pinto uses chile from Hatch, NM that is fire-roasted and hand-peeled, new beans from southern CO, healthy sunflower oil when making chips and frying, Celtic sea salt for seasoning, and numerous local organic ingredients when in season.

A vermiculture project on site processes food scraps creating a nutrient rich "tea." The bokashi composting project processes 600 lbs of food waste weekly. The “tea” and compost are combined with effective microorganisms for a herbicide and pesticide free fertilizer for El Pinto chile fields and organic growing.
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Ambiance
  • Diners' Choice WinnerGood for Groups
  • Diners' Choice WinnerOutdoor Dining
Diner Reviews
  • "The food was not up to par on this visit and we were seated in a part of the restaurant that was so dark that my 70 year old parents and us had trouble reading the menu. Waitress knew and did not offer to move us."
    Dined on 4/13/2014
  • "We had our business group dinner here. Outstanding !"
    Dined on 4/11/2014
  • "I have been to El Pinto before, but this time the food was great and the waitress was even better. I drink a lot of water and I never had to ask for a refill. Food was great. Combination plates weren't quite as large as I imagined, but no one left hungry!"
    Dined on 4/5/2014
  • "Great food, service was good. If you are there with a need to speak and listen to groups it may be hard at times with the noise level. If you are there in a situation where everyone can have separate conversations then its not an issue."
    Dined on 4/2/2014
  • "This place got a lot of hype from locals who suggested I try for a business dinner with a group. Sorry, but the food was mediocre at best. Don't know how you do flavorless when you advertise fresh, local ingredients and are famous for green chile recipes. Despite all of the famous people on the wall of fame, I have had far superior New Mexico food in Santa Fe, Toas, heck, even Clovis."
    Dined on 3/31/2014
  • "The food here was very good. The ambiance was nice and it was busy but not overcrowded. They have ample seating in several dining rooms to accommodate many people. I had the red chile ribs which is one of their signature dishes and was quite impressive."
    Dined on 4/1/2014
  • "Nothing special. Could have got the same thing in the frozen section at the store."
    Dined on 3/28/2014
  • "Like their New Mexican food a lot but had a steak tonight and it was as good as we've had anywhere and the price was good too."
    Dined on 3/27/2014
  • "The food is exceptional. We have never had better Mexican food anywhere!"
    Dined on 3/26/2014
  • "Pricey for fairly typical Mexican food, ambiance good for visitors, otherwise nothing special."
    Dined on 3/26/2014
  • "The food is not very good at El Pinto. The salsa was the only thing that had a good taste. The rest of the food was bland, had the look of having set around for a while. I asked for hot green chile on top of my relleno and when it arrived the relleno looked like it was out of a box and the chile was not hot. There are lot of good Mexican food places in Albuquerque to choose from and I will choose another spot from now on. If you want to pay a big price for ambience and poor food El Pinto is the place for you."
    Dined on 3/19/2014
  • "We've been to El Pinto many times and no doubt we'll continue to be customers. The salsa is very good, the chile con queso is above average (though I do prefer some others), and this time I tried the chicken adovada and it was superb....really tasty!"
    Dined on 3/18/2014
  • "I ordered nachos for lunch and they were without a doubt the worst I ever had. There was no flavor and it never resembled nachos. Never again."
    Dined on 3/16/2014
  • "Amazing service, food and ambience! I'm soooo glad I took my out of town guest here for a delicious meal. Thank you!"
    Dined on 3/14/2014
  • "My date and I were seated between two large groups. It was so loud we could barely hear each other. I specifically request a quiet location. The excellent waiter (Eric) was the only saving grace. Aside from his outstanding service I was very disappointed!"
    Dined on 3/15/2014
  • "Said it in title. Always good service. Our waiter was especially excellent. He was GREAT!"
    Dined on 3/9/2014
  • "We had our Parent's 50th Anniversary dinner at El Pinto. My parents never had a traditional wedding, wedding cake, etc. They wanted to celebrate their 50th with just their kids (2) and grandchildren (5). We appreciate how nice your staff made the area we reserved looked by putting white linen on the table and setting up an extra table for the wedding cake. The staff also gave my parents a special gift. My parents had a wonderful time!"
    Dined on 3/9/2014
  • "When a request was made to take a large group to dinner after work, El Pinto was one of the first choices. After dining there with the group, I was a disappointed in the experience. The table and atmosphere was great and it was easy for the large group, it was just the food service and timing. We had 13 in our party and the food took over an hour to get to the table, when it arrived it was warm or in some instances cold. The group did not want to send the plates back since it had taken so long to get the food in the first place. The next day we went to another local restaurant and that dinner took half the time."
    Dined on 3/4/2014
  • "Great food, great ambiance, and superb service. In the many years of life, I have now seen the tops in service that can be experienced. Our server, Allie, made out evening even that much more. I would recommend the food (New Mexican style), the setting, and most important, Allie. Wonderful experience with wonderful people making our day."
    Dined on 3/2/2014
  • "We come to NM annually and always find time to stop at El Pinto. The food is a little on the pricey side so we only come for special occasions. We were greeted promptly at the desk but then referred to another desk because we had an open table reservation. A little confusion on why we're awkwardly standing at the second desk but it got worked out. The ambiance is fabulous, the food is great, but it is a little pricey for what it is."
    Dined on 3/1/2014
  • "We met for a informal business dinner-food was great, margaritas even better! Our server was great and very knowledgeable! Ask for the Garden Room-very pretty!"
    Dined on 2/25/2014
  • "Everyone enjoyed their food, several comments on how good the red chili was. Most restaurants no longer make the effort. One person said it was as good as his moms!"
    Dined on 2/19/2014
  • "This place is a little pricey for the meal you get but the food is always good and the service is outstanding. In fact the service was the best part of the evening and at least as good as got when I went to Emeril's in New Orleans.! I promise you that their service was impeccable.! El Pinto is a great place for a lunch or brunch with a full-service bar and beautiful location. If you're on a budget, skip the bar. The drinks are even pricey-er than the food."
    Dined on 2/14/2014
  • "Without a doubt this place has the best New Mexican food in town. Great dinner."
    Dined on 2/11/2014
  • "My family and I went for Sunday brunch. We were seated in a back corner room which was dimly lit and pretty much empty. I noted on the Open Table reservation that we were celebrating my mother's birthday so I was hoping for more ambiance since this was a celebration. Our server also never once acknowledged my mother's birthday which was disappointing. Food quality is excellent, however, grossly overpriced. I ordered one of the Sunday Brunch "house specialties", Red Chile Empanadas, and unfortunately, was disappointed by the quantity. The menu item says "empanadas", however, I was only served a single empanada with 2 eggs for $12.00! The red chile sauce was good, however, the serving was miniscule."
    Dined on 2/9/2014
  • "El Pinto was a perfect place to take my take for his birthday dinner. We were seated near a cozy fireplace and it was perfect. The food was tasty (we ordered chile con queso, nachos, combo plate #2). The half order of nachos was enough for two adults, and it was good. The chile con queso was delicious, too. My date ate his whole plate and said it was good as well. Our server was friendly and everyone was welcoming. Thanks for a great night out!"
    Dined on 1/31/2014
  • "Their tequila menu is impressive. Excellent place to build your own tequila flight."
    Dined on 1/25/2014
  • "Service was EXCELLENT...usually that's the one thing that lacks there. Food was amazing. Overall great experience!!!"
    Dined on 1/23/2014
  • "this was an awful experience! I had to wait at the hostess stand before I was acknowledged. Finally I was able to tell the host that we had a reservation. He found the reservation & instructed me to wait around the corner & someone would seat us. (Party of 8... 2 were still en route) I waited & waited...while holding the baby, Finally someone asked if I had been helped. They said they were not set up for us, and would go set a table. Finally they came back for us & sat us. It was in a back area with heaters above that we're so hot they burned us. It took forever to to get them turned off, but by then we were so miserable, the baby had a horrible melt down & vomited because she was so hot & crying that I left. I ate my cold food at home..."
    Dined on 1/24/2014
  • "Went here as a birthday celebration for my husband. They placed us in a nice spot near a fireplace. Portions generous and taste of food very good."
    Dined on 1/19/2014
  • "The seating option here are very nice. And the patio area is hugh. Plenty of great atmosphere for everyone. The wait staff is friendly and the food came out almost too fast. And it was hot like it should be in a good restaurant. Really like the several levels of margaritas they have to offer, from tap house margs to anejos. And their own the bottle program - well maybe next time."
    Dined on 1/18/2014
  • "We have been here before, and this trip we had friends meet us for dinner. They have not spent anytime looking around or expiercing the local surrounding area. So they were pleasantly surprise at the ambience, food and overall decor of El pinto. The food was great, our server was fantastic, sorry I didn't get her name. My wife and I was happy that we made the right choice for our friends. Thanks for all your help in this evening affair."
    Dined on 1/17/2014
  • "Beautiful spot, I would recommend for a special occasion - the food was OK, not fabulous, especially for the price which is higher than most places with similar menu items. Our wait-person was excellent, food came quickly, and I was very happy that they offer a gluten-free menu since I have Celiac disease. They give you a choice of mild or hot chile sauces, most New Mexican restaurants here don't do that. So overall, I would recommend this as a well-known local spot to take guests, but we probably won't go back since there are other places in the Albuquerque area that have better food and are more reasonably priced."
    Dined on 1/12/2014
  • "had the great experience at El Pinto, we brought a guest from Alaska and she raved about the food. We have enjoyed many good meals and great service there too."
    Dined on 1/9/2014
  • "Always enjoy El Pinto. Xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx."
    Dined on 1/10/2014
  • "Their food, chips, salsa, green chili, sopapillas are excellent, well worth it. A little pricey would be the only downside."
    Dined on 1/5/2014
  • "Great mex - new mex restaurant. They have a huge restaurant so there is never a wait. The food is fantastic and the service is some of the best I've ever had. Sometimes they will forget little things like a side of sour cream, but they always bring it right out after you remind them. This is a very good, affordable restaurant."
    Dined on 12/31/2013
  • "Tasty and delicious foods. Had NYC guests who were absolutely impressed with the dinner and service."
    Dined on 1/2/2014
  • "I made a reservation for 15 pax. I was not given any option to pick one of the many dining rooms that they have. On the dinner date I went early to make sure everything was alright. They set the table close to the kitchen, in a narrow hall that was used very often for the server as a pass way to the other tables. It was very stressful to have all that hot food passing every minute over your shoulder. On top of that I was not given any option on how I wanted the tables to be set. I found the tables with no table covers, no napkins. Evidently they have a lack in costumer skills and on event organization. oh I forgot the room was very cold. Olivia, Desiree You really have to put those costumer skills to work."
    Dined on 12/28/2013
  • "Made our reservation for dinner using open table and restaurant completely ignored the reservation. Had out of town guest and both are diabetic and need to eat within a specific time due to insulin shots. Upon our arrival we were advised that out table was not ready. We had a party of 7 and were made to wait 28 minutes, for them to set our table while they sat parties of 6 and 8 before us. We most definitely will not be returning!"
    Dined on 12/29/2013