Saturday, January 21, 2012

New Mexico Tea Company and Golden Crown Panaderia

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of visiting both the New Mexico Tea  Company and the Golden Crown Panaderia. While waiting for laundry at Blue Mountain Laundry, I decided to walk over to the bakery and see what kind of goods awaited me! I was in for a definite treat!

Golden Crown Panaderia
The Golden Crown is in somewhat of an obscure location. However, it is located in an adorable building with an amazing owner and an amazing product. As I walked into the Panaderia, I didn't know what to expect, as I had never before been to a Panaderia. The entire building smelled of baking breads and other delicious treats. As I sniffed around, I heard my stomach growl. That sealed the deal. I would not leave empty handed. I saw that on the building they have advertised: Green Chile Bread. As fan of Green Chile and an even bigger fan of bread, I selected the delectable looking morsel. I had also been given a free cookie as a treat for college students, which was very delicious.

As I explained a little bit about my blog, the owner, Pratt Morales, was extremely helpful in explaining a little about the bakery, along with some of the successes at the bakery. Golden Crown has been on the Food Network, TWICE!! Also, they are featured in Southwest Airline's magazine: Spirit. Needless to say, I was expecting a delicious product. I snapped a picture of Pratt and promptly exited to the New Mexico Tea Company.

Visit Golden Crown's website at
Or better yet! Just visit Golden Crown at
1103 Mountain RD NW Albuquerque,NM 87102

New Mexico Tea Company
The New Mexico Tea Co is located not even a block from Golden Crown. I was overwhelmed by the sweet smell of tea as I entered. Shaun, an employee, was very helpful as I selected my tea. She was knowledgeable and kind, explaining everything about the shop. I chose a Ti Guan Yin oolong for my treat.

The interior of the building is very inviting and colorful. Oriental decorations were strewn about. NMTC has a fantastic selection of teapots and tea accessories as well. I was impressed with the knowledge of the staff here as well as their willingness to engage in conversation. I didn't want to leave, after all, they do brew tea on site.

Alas, the laundry was done so I couldn't stay. I will return here to drink some tea and enjoy the absolutely lovely environment.

Visit NMTC at
or go to their location at

1131 Mountain Rd NW STE #2
Albuquerque, NM 87102

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Dagmar's Strudel Haus

Before this experience, I had never before had the opportunity to taste German food. Up till this point, I had only had cold canned sauerkraut and a rather uncreative goulash mixture that I only vaguely remember from my childhood. I was somewhat tentative, but excited, to eat at this restaurant.

The Atmosphere
At Dagmar's I was in for an absolutely marvelous treat. Walking into the restaurant was an interesting experience. Not quite what I expected. As myself and my party were immediately seated, we ordered drinks from the very helpful and very polite waiter. He kept apologizing as he felt that they were behind. Most tables were filled, which was a good sign for me. Despite his constant apologies, I felt as though the service was extremely fast. Germans are, after all, known for their efficiency. Dagmar's has a very quaint interior, however it was not uncomfortable, other than the lack of heat. The building was still crowded with Christmas decorations and restaurant regulars filled the seats. I was getting hungry and the foreign words on the menu were looking more and more confusing (and yet the descriptions that were in English were looking more and more delicious). I ordered Rouladen at the last minute as I was flustered when we ordered.

The Entree
As the server finally returned to the table with my meal, the steaming beef roll stuffed with bacon, onion, and pickle smelled of heaven. Two delectable dumplings soaked in gravy and surrounded by perfectly seasoned pickled red cabbage. My mouth instantly began to water as I took the first slice of this thing of beauty. As I bit down through the layers of pure genius, I tasted what I had never tasted before: succulent beef, tenderized and seasoned; flavorful onions; fattened bacon, greasy and buttery; a sour, vinegar infused pickle; and the best only mustard I have ever enjoyed in my life. Utter awesomeness. Dagmar is a genius, as far as I was concerned. I could only finish half of this dish as my guts felt like they were going to explode afterward. Next up, the strudel with cream!

The Dessert
The waiter brought me the most beautiful looking, flaky, layered strudel filled with apples and cinnamon. It was topped impeccably with whipped cream. I was prepared to only take one bite, as that was literally all I could fit in my stomach. The taste of this plate of beauty caused me to indulge on 3 bites. Three heavenly, wonderful bites. Thank you Dagmar. My mind is now open to the flavor of strudel.

Overall Impression
Dagmar's is a wonderful restaurant. The food is unbeatable and one of the best meals I have ever eaten. I have a few criticisms, though. The interior leaves something to be desired. The restaurant was uncomfortably cold and somewhat awkward as far as seating arrangement. I would also suggest adding some decorations (especially wall paint) to make the environment more pleasing. However, the food and the service was impeccable. It was obvious that these meals were well prepared from hands of experience and creativity. To make this restaurant better, there isn't much I could suggest. Just a few modern updates and a bit of class. 

Go to Dagmar's. Especially if you are hungry!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Chama River Brewing Company

You all should know that...


I am also happily eating my left overs from Chama River :) Yum.

I have experienced quite a few very wonderful restaurants in ABQ. From Mexican dives where no one (literally no one) speaks English to high class French bistros, I am loving the food scene around Albuquerque. I live in a neighborhood that allows me to enjoy this food often, so expect a lot of these types of reviews!

So without further ado, my take on: Chama River Brewing Company

The Atmosphere
I loved the atmosphere of this restaurant from the moment I opened the door. Not only is there a beautiful exterior, but just inside the entrance is a peaceful rock fountain topped with a bronze hued heron statue that is reminiscent of a mountain stream nestled deep in the Sandias (mountains in ABQ). I approached the friendly hostesses and inquired as to the wait for a table for 4. Kindly, they told me there was no wait! As my party joined me inside, we were quickly seated at a comfortable booth.

The Appetizer
The waitress quickly came to our table as we ordered our drinks. For the over 21 crowd, she was very helpful and knowledgeable about the selection of beer that is brewed on site at the restaurant. After browsing the menu, we chose to indulge on the Green Chile Fondue as our starter. It was brought to us quickly and we devoured this tasty appetizer! It was served with apples, sourdough bread, broccoli, and cauliflower. The melted gourmet cheese was stringy and savory with a secretive hint of the signature Green Chile roasted flavor. This appetizer left nothing to be desired. Overall, an A+.

I also ordered a delicious French Onion-esque soup. As a fan of French Onion soup, this part of the meal was greatly anticipated. It was served to me at the temperature that I like: hot, but not so hot my mouth tasted like rubber for the rest of the meal. Perfect. Unfortunately, the soup lacked a cheese topper that is so common in this type of soup. There were shavings of melting mozzarella cheese throughout. The consistency was perfect. All in all, extremely enjoyable.

The Entree

As an entree, Cavatappi doused in a roasted red chile parmesan cream topped with grilled and seasoned chicken was my obvious choice. I appreciated the undertones of spices and the rather prominent flavor of sun dried tomatoes that permeated the dish. The spinach and peas were a nice touch; however, a minced dill or parsley would have been a better, more complimentary choice for greenery in this dish, in my opinion. The spinach was a bit slimy and the peas a bit overcooked. I still enjoyed this plate and finished about 3/4ths of it, as my appetite was slaked. A great entree, overall!

Overall Impression
My time at Chama River Brewing Company was wonderful. I appreciated the servers and hostesses who where speedy, efficient, and polite. I loved the well thought-out menu. I couldn't do without the wonderful New Mexico flare that Chama River offered. Even the seating in the waiting area was comfortable. Great atmosphere, great food, and great service make this a trifecta of greatness. This restaurant is, and should remain, a successful addition to the Albuquerque food scene.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Hello, Albuquerque!

Good Evening!

My name is Hannah and I am a student at the University of New Mexico, and am a native of a small town in Wyoming. I am very new to Albuquerque and trying to get a feel for the culture. Consequently, I am starting this blog. I am thus far a very big fan of this big town with a small town feel. From historic Route 66 to ABQ Uptown, there is something for everyone here in Albuquerque.

Since I moved here, these questions have constantly been on my mind:

What is Albuquerque, exactly?

Why would anyone want to live, visit, or explore this area of the country?

What is the good, the bad, and the ugly of this city?

Well, the premise of this blog is to discover exactly that.

So as you read this from your homes, whether you are a native of Albuquerque or just curious about this conglomerate culture, keep in mind that my opinion is one of a non-native Albuquerquean. I love this city and I love the people who are with me here.

Enjoy :)
And until next time, au revoir!