Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Where to eat in Albuquerque

Albuquerque does not have a lot of fine dining restaurants, but still we were able to find some very good and highly recommended places. If you are visiting the area, make an effort and go to Santa Fe, where you will find a better culinary scene.
1) Farm and Table --- What to order: This is a very casual restaurant that uses local and organic produce. In fact, they have their own vegetables and herb garden on the back (you can walk there and visit). We decided to seat outside, since the weather was very nice. My husband ordered the Farm and Table Burger: hand-smashed and seasoned local grass-fed beef, Tucumcari cheddar on a house-made whole-wheat bun and sesame seeds. It came with French fries and mustard-honey yogurt sauce. The only thing he did not like was the mustard sauce, it was too strong for him. He much better prefer to have ketchup :)
Farm and Table on Urbanspoon

Farm and Table Burger
Mine dish was pretty light and summery. I got the Petite Caprese Salad: local tomato, burrata cheese, basil gel, sweet olive oil powder, and 12-year old balsamic vinaigrette. The dish was elegant, but it was missing salt. I ordered some bread on the side, because the serving was extremely small. They gave me grilled bread, maybe 2-3 days old or even defrosted. I was a little bit disappointed, since I expected nice, warm, soft bread. The texture of the burrata was a little bit liquid, almost like a cream. Overall, not a dish for a lunch, probably a tasting or an appetizer.

Petite Caprese Salad with Burrata Cheese
2) Pizzeria Farina --- What to order: This is the pizzeria located next to the famous restaurant The Artichoke Café. The place is wonderful, casual, a little bit loud, but great for informal dinner. We shared one pizza, but asked the server if they can make it from 2 different pizza. So, yes, we tried the Funghi (mushrooms, fontina, taleggio, mozzarella, thyme, and shallot) and the Bianca (mozzarella, parmigiano, ricotta, truffle oil, sage, and artichoke hearts). We had to wait about 20 minutes to get our dinner, the place was super busy, but at the end, we were happy with the pizza. Thin crust, chewy, and baked to perfection. We ordered a bottle of wine: A Mano Primitivo (Italy 2008), which was an easy drinking wine, that paired both flavors of the pizza.
Farina Pizzeria & Wine Bar on Urbanspoon

Two pizzas in one: Funghi and Bianca
For dessert, we ordered the special of the night: Goat Cheese Cheesecake, served with organic tomato jam with vanilla bean, basil simple syrup, and toasted pine nuts. We loved it. On the top, there was a nice caramelized crust (almost like a crème brulee). The tangy bite of the goat cheese was perfectly paired with the sweetness of the jam and the crunchiness of the nuts. REAL HEAVEN!!!

Goat cheese cheesecake with organic tomato jam and pine nuts

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