About El Pinto

10500 4th St NW
Albuquerque, NM 87114
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Nestled in the ancient cottonwoods, 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. Experience an authentic Taste of New Mexico.

Executive Chef, Marc Quiñones, is well known for pairing tradition with innovation at El Pinto. You may know his name from Food Network shows, Chopped and Cutthroat Kitchen.

El Pinto is proud to have the first and only Animal Welfare Approved laying hen program on property. 200 hens lay pasture raised eggs for use at El Pinto.

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.

Dining Style:
Casual Dining

Cuisines:
Mexican / Southwestern, Mexican

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.

Cross Street:
Alameda Blvd NW

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(505) 898-1771

Website:
http://www.elpinto.com/

Entertainment:
Free live music each Tue and Thurs night from 6:30 to 8 pm.

Parking Details:
Ample parking available on site for individuals and tour buses.

Executive Chef:
Marc Quiñones

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cocktails, Entertainment, Fireplace, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Happy Hour, Outdoor dining, Private Room, View, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

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El Pinto Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.2

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.0

service

4.2

ambience

4.3

value

3.8

noise

Moderate

84% would recommend it to a friend

Authentic (57)
Fireplace (52)
Special Occasion (49)
See All
Good for Groups (48)
Local Ingredients (48)
Historic (44)
Worth the Drive (42)
Good for a Date (42)
Family Style (38)
Great for Outdoor Dining (38)
Casual (36)
Spicy (34)
Good for Anniversaries (34)
Good for Birthdays (30)
Comfort Food (30)
Great for Lunch (29)
Fun (28)
Romantic (28)
Cozy (26)
Creative Cuisine (25)
Scenic View (23)
Neighborhood Gem (22)
Great for Brunch (18)
Sunday Lunch (17)
Bar Seating (17)
Happy Hour (17)
Fit for Foodies (15)
Kid-friendly (14)
Quiet Conversation (14)
Handcrafted Cocktails (14)
Seasonal (14)
Business Meals (13)
Gluten Free Options (12)
Good Vegetarian Options (11)
Outstanding Value (10)
Disabled Access (9)
Private Room (9)
Organic (9)
Healthy (9)
Tasting Menu (8)
Hot Spot (8)
Great Beer (7)
Tapas (7)
Pre/post Theatre (7)
People Watching (5)
Notable Wine List (5)
Wood Oven (4)
Vegan (4)
Live Music (3)
Paleo Friendly (3)
Vibrant Bar Scene (3)
Quick Bite (2)
Modern Decor (2)
Molecular Gastronomy (2)
Afternoon Tea (1)
Late-night Find (1)
Live Sports (1)
Dancing (1)
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884 reviews
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 (New Mexico)·Dined 4 days ago

Great food, great service! It was busy and the noise level was a little high, made it difficult to talk.

Tags: Good Vegetarian Options, Great for Outdoor Dining, Vegan
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Palm Springs)·Dined 5 days ago

Was passing through town and looking for authentic New Mexican dining experience. Love the location and the exterior ambience. Went there especially to try their extensive list of tequilas. Sat at a bar table and realized the server really wasn't into her job. Moved to the bar where there seemed to be similar disinterest until we persisted in asking questions - enjoyed the flights of tequila. Food was alright - salsa that came with the chips was bland, and we never did get some with some heat that we requested. Very surprising because they produce salsa for sale there? And I never did get my steak cooked to medium rare. Other than that the food was alright. Having said all that, although our (maybe unrealistic?) expectations weren't met, I would recommend others try this place.

Tags: Scenic View, Authentic
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food2
ambience4
service2
value2

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined 6 days ago

Some of the best food in the Albuquerque area with an ambiance that can't be beat!

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food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined 6 days ago

Our meal was excellent. Generous, very tasty, hot and nicely plated. The hostesses and servers were average at best. We were not greeted in a manner that made us feel welcome or valued. Took almost 20 minutes to get our drink orders (they weren't that busy at 5:30 on a Sunday evening). Our server checked on us twice after our food was served but his attitude was very unenthusiastic. Enjoyed the meal a lot but staff needs a boost in customer treatment.

Tags: Kid-friendly, People Watching, Good for a Date, Fireplace, Neighborhood Gem, Fun, Authentic, Comfort Food, Good for Birthdays, Disabled Access
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food5
ambience4
service2
value3

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined 6 days ago

This is a wonderful restaurant. It is a great place to bring the family or for a special occasion. Staff and service is excellent. It has a very nice New Mexico feel.

Tags: Authentic, Creative Cuisine, Spicy, Good for Birthdays, Local Ingredients, Fireplace
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food3
ambience5
service4
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined 6 days ago

Delicious food, great service, waitress was fun and friendly.

Tags: Good for Groups, Cozy, Hot Spot, Fireplace
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food5
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined 7 days ago

This was one of the best restaurants we have ever visited. The food was great, the service even better. They are a farm to table restaurant that grows its' own ingredients. They even have chickens to give them fresh eggs. The waitress we had was friendly and so willing to help. It almost seemed like we were the only table she had. We will certainly be back for another visit very soon!

Tags: Local Ingredients, Good for a Date, Fireplace, Romantic, Outstanding Value
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

vip
 (Denver)·Dined 7 days ago

Great food and margaritas! Green chili was perfect ingredient that enhanced queso, chicken enchiladas, and chili reallenos.

Tags: Good for a Date, Creative Cuisine, Spicy, Healthy, Authentic, Romantic, Fun, Special Occasion, Good for Groups, Casual, Bar Seating, Business Meals, Fit for Foodies, Good for Anniversaries, Private Room
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 17, 2017

we had a good time during our visit. we were not rushed out after the meal. we were not constantly interrupted. the food was very good.

Tags: Special Occasion, Casual, Good for a Date
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 16, 2017

We've been to El Pinto several times, brought visitors from out of town, food and service is always to everyone's liking....no doubt we will be back again in the near future.

Tags: Fun, Kid-friendly, Good for Groups
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food4
ambience4
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value3

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 15, 2017

I love el Pinto! It is the perfect dining location and food is always good. Love that they now offer a Gluten Free menu.

Tags: Fireplace, Fun, Great for Outdoor Dining, Fit for Foodies, Scenic View, Sunday Lunch, Kid-friendly, Tasting Menu, Local Ingredients, Comfort Food, Good for Birthdays, Vibrant Bar Scene, Historic, Romantic, Spicy, Outstanding Value, Good for Groups, Creative Cuisine, Good for Anniversaries, Authentic, Special Occasion, Gluten Free Options, Happy Hour, Cozy, Handcrafted Cocktails, Business Meals, Live Music, Bar Seating, Casual, Good for a Date
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Houston)·Dined on February 15, 2017

The food was great, as always--we've been going to El Pinto for over 15 years and love the indoor waterfalls. Our waitress, Faith, did an excellent job of making our Valentine's dinner extra special!

Tags: Spicy, Seasonal, Creative Cuisine, Disabled Access
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food4
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Las Vegas)·Dined on February 15, 2017

Great food for Valentines Day dinner. This was not our first visit and we were not disappointed on this visit.

Tags: Comfort Food, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Fireplace, Spicy, Worth the Drive
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 15, 2017

New chef created a great valentine's day menu. The steaks melted in your mouth and the side vegetable was very unique. Hats off El Pinto.

Tags: Authentic, Great for Lunch, Great for Outdoor Dining, Fireplace, Fun, Spicy
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food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 15, 2017

Been going here since the 60's and this just isn't the same place it used to be. We weren't served chips and salsa, queso we ordered as an appetizer didn't come until after food was delivered. The New Mexican food was ok, but much different than it used to be. We were seated in the far corner of an enclosed patio, even though the restaurant wasn't full, and it was pretty darn chilly out there. The chips that were served with the queso weren't the same hot, freshly made chips they used to have. For the prices they charge, I would expect something special, and this wasn't it. I guess this is a nice place for tourists, but as a local, I think it will be a long time before we go back. The younger generation has made many changes, all of them not good. If you are expecting the food and service to be as it once was, you will be disappointed. If you did not eat here many years ago, you might not find anything wrong.

Tags: Authentic
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food4
ambience3
service2
value2

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 15, 2017

Great atmosphere, the server was really helpful. the food was great, especially with a lot of organic options to choose from.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Great for Outdoor Dining
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 14, 2017

A beautiful place to go, it offers both privacy for a romantic meal or party when your with a group. We have been going to El Pinto now for over 35yrs and it never changes in consistency of great food, great service, fair prices, and a clean and authentic Mexican style restaurant. We always bring out of town guests for dinner or lunch to experience the taste and style of NM, they all always love it, and we love it too!

Tags: Paleo Friendly, Tasting Menu, Local Ingredients, Fireplace, Fun, Good for a Date, Healthy, Afternoon Tea, Spicy, Bar Seating, Casual, Great for Brunch, Quiet Conversation, Romantic, Family Style, Notable Wine List, Fit for Foodies, Handcrafted Cocktails, Historic, Good for Birthdays, Comfort Food, Private Room, Business Meals, Tapas, Cozy, Creative Cuisine, Kid-friendly, Great for Outdoor Dining, Quick Bite, Great Beer, Outstanding Value, Authentic, Sunday Lunch, Pre/post Theatre, Great for Lunch, Worth the Drive, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Groups, Special Occasion, Happy Hour, Neighborhood Gem
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 14, 2017

We had excellent service and the food was above average. We were seated in a darken area and had trouble seeing the menu. We shared a meal and had hoped the cook (s) would have had half of the meal on two plates. We looked around as we were leaving and saw much more romantic areas and wished we had been seated there. You need to have your staff be more receptive and friendly. Remember you have lots of competition in Albuquerque.

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food2
ambience1
service2
value1

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 14, 2017

Good food and pleasant atmosphere. They could actually cute back a bit on some of he portions. They chicken salad had way too much lettuce.

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Good for a Date
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food4
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on February 13, 2017

I ordered the taco salad. The word salad implies that there is lettuce and vegetables in it.

The whole thing was shredded chicken. My house margarita was made with that cheap overly sweet mix. My husband had the upgraded margarita that was much better. Staff was friendly and timely with our dinners and it was a large group. Mixed review for sure.

Tags: Kid-friendly
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food2
ambience3
service4
value2

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 13, 2017

Food and atmosphere are wonderful. Our server was terrific!

Tags: Healthy, Good for a Date, Creative Cuisine, Local Ingredients, Business Meals, Authentic, Comfort Food, Special Occasion
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food5
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service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 12, 2017

I ordered a draft beer and it was flat I was disappointed when I found out when waitress said they do not serve fajitas anymore. I thought the prices were a little expensive for the food quality that I received

Tags: Modern Decor
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food4
ambience3
service2
value3

 
 (Orlando)·Dined on February 12, 2017

El Pinto is a classic place to introduce New Mexican cuisine to friends, family, or coworkers. Great drinks, food, and service that works very hard to ensure that you enjoy the experience

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Special Occasion, Hot Spot, Family Style, Good for a Date, Historic
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food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 11, 2017

Food was delicious and service was exceptional, always a great experience at El Pinto

Tags: Fireplace
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 11, 2017

Our experience was wonderful as always. Love the food, love the atmosphere.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Spicy, Neighborhood Gem, Healthy, Comfort Food, Good for Groups
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food5
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 10, 2017

We were a party of 13, with reservations for 11:30am. We had clients in from CA and thought we would have plenty of time for a meal. We arrived and were sat at a lovely table. We ordered drinks and our entrees. We waited for 90 minuets before out food arrived. There were people in our party who had appointments and had to take their food with them and could not enjoy the meal with the rest of the party. The clients were able to make their flight, but were disappointed at the amount of time it took to receive our meal.

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food4
ambience4
service1
value4

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 9, 2017

Just popped in for a business dinner, 3rd visit all 3 visits were outstanding, great selection of food, great tasting food, great selection of mixed drinks. Service has been excellent and the Sopophillas (sp?) unbelievable treat. Highly recommend, Great atmosphere inside and out.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Good for Anniversaries, Authentic, Fireplace, Spicy, Historic, Business Meals, Good for a Date, Worth the Drive, Casual, Creative Cuisine, Great for Outdoor Dining, Bar Seating, Family Style, Handcrafted Cocktails
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 5, 2017

Brought friends from out of state because of the Mexican flare. Food was good but disappointing in the dining area. The area was cold and the bistro table and metal chairs didn't help.

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food3
ambience1
service5
value3

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 5, 2017

Thank you! It was a little cold outside and I was worried it would be inside too. They sat us in front of the fireplace. I meet my cousins from Houston there. It was nice since I haven't seen them for a year. Everyone finished their whole plate!

Tags: Scenic View, Neighborhood Gem, Fireplace
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 5, 2017

I've been to El Pinto on multiple occasions and loved the food. However my most recent visit was very disappointing. I ordered my usual carne adovada plate, which in the past has been incredible. This visit left something to be desired. My pork was tender, but dry. It had no flavor. The chili was dull and even the beans which tend to be my favorite were sub par. My guests were underwhelmed as well. I'm hoping that I just visited on an off night, but I hesitate to return.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Local Ingredients
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food2
ambience4
service4
value2

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 4, 2017

El Pinto is one of the best places to dine in Albuquerque.

Tags: Spicy, Special Occasion, Authentic, Good for Groups, Fireplace
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food5
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service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on February 4, 2017

The atmosphere was great. We had nice table next to a fireplace which my wife loved. The food was great. We had never been here before so we chose this place to entertain out of town guests. I ordered a giant bone-in ribeye which was cooked to perfection. Sadly, our server was terrible. We waited for about 12 minutes before he came over although he had opportunities to at least acknowledge our presence sooner. It took another ten minutes to get our drinks and another 5 minutes for him to come back with a lime for my beer. One of our orders came out wrong but we just wanted to eat so we remained silent. I could go on all day about it but life is too short. I will go back to this restaurant, yet I will make sure I have a different server

Tags: Cozy
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food5
ambience5
service1
value3

 
 (Portland)·Dined on February 4, 2017

Great food. The silver coin maragaritas are the best in ABQ. Visit whenever I come to town.

Tags: Great for Brunch, Great for Lunch, Fireplace, Good for Groups, Worth the Drive, Business Meals
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food5
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 (Chicago)·Dined on January 30, 2017

We are long time El Pinto customers. 3 or more times a month for over 35 years. It's still good- maybe better than ever. Always choose to take guesta and friends.

Tags: Happy Hour, Quiet Conversation, Handcrafted Cocktails, Molecular Gastronomy, Cozy, Worth the Drive, Casual, Special Occasion, Disabled Access, Kid-friendly, Scenic View, Fun
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food5
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service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on January 30, 2017

I love the atmosphere. El Pinto used to be one of our favorite spots. The last two visits have been very disappointing. Sadly, this visit was my wife's birthday celebration. Both times the rice was crunchy and the portions seem to be getting smaller. In addition the plate presentation looks like it was "mass produced". My carne adovada birrito spent too long under the heat lamps and the tortilla was dry and almost stale. We had a table of 10 and had to wait a rediculous amount of time for each phase of the meal. One of the members of our party ordered a gringo hamburger and the condiments were not delivered before the rest of the group had finished their meals. To our surprise, we were informed that if we wanted linen tablecloths and nice glasses, that was by reservation only (which we did) and an extra charge! To the cooks credit, the beans were well done and tender. The ribs were tender and meaty. There are a lot of places to go that have better portions and quality. The smart choice is to go to the bar and have a margarita and some appetizers.

Tags: Fireplace
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food2
ambience5
service2
value2

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on January 29, 2017

El Pinto has been around for decades. Having eaten there once before I knew I wanted to treat my family to their dining experience. The restaurant is huge with obvious add-on rooms over time. We were seated in the garden room which offered huge plants, trees, and a low light atmosphere. Bring your readers and flashlight!!! haha. The food is expensive for what you get though the ambiance somewhat makes up for it. It wasn't the best I've had but not the worst. I'd return during the summertime to enjoy outside dining.

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food3
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value2

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on January 29, 2017

We have lived here for nine years and friends have recommended El Pinto but said don't go their for the food but it's a nice atmosphere. We were disappointed when we made reservations online then were sat at the table by the kitchen door where there was a cold draft and noise from the kitchen. The Hostess was not friendly and barely smiled, the server was just okay and had no suggestions and seemed bothered. I would not recommend anyone or visit again.

Tags: Bar Seating
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food3
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service2
value2

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on January 29, 2017

Great food and great atmosphere. Our waitress was very knowledgeable, and it was obvious how passionate she was about her job.

Tags: Good for a Date, Great for Outdoor Dining, Seasonal, Authentic, Tasting Menu, People Watching, Gluten Free Options, Neighborhood Gem
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food5
ambience5
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value4

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on January 18, 2017

The food was okay, it wasn't outstanding for how much it cost. There are many places in Albuquerque with better food for half the price.

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining
1 person found this review helpful.
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food2
ambience5
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value1

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on January 16, 2017

This place is always a treat! Best hidden gem! I love eating "outside" even in the winter since they keep it so warm on the patio! The ambiance here is perfection! As a a Cali-Texan Transplant I know my mexican food and I am PICKY! This place is the BEST! Totally worth the price too! And you get a LOT of food! I bring all my friends and family here! LOVE LOVE LOVE!!

Tags: Bar Seating, Family Style, Sunday Lunch, Comfort Food, Vibrant Bar Scene, Great for Lunch, Good for Birthdays, Cozy, Good for a Date, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for Groups, Romantic, Fireplace, Great for Brunch, Worth the Drive, Kid-friendly, Good for Anniversaries, Seasonal, Neighborhood Gem, Fun, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on January 15, 2017

My family and I went to El Pinto for Sunday brunch and were so impressed with the brunch menu! It was a delightful experience.

Tags: Family Style, Worth the Drive, Great for Brunch, Good for Birthdays, Local Ingredients
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food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on January 15, 2017

Longstanding historic restaurant that while in the past had good food in a charming locale now seems to be resting on its laurels. Food was at best average for genre, room we were seated in somewhat dingy with no atmosphere. So while the wait service was fine would look elsewhere for New Mexican food.

Tags: Historic
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food2
ambience3
service4
value3

vip
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 15, 2017

The food was amazing as always, but what really made the experience outstanding (especially as we celebrated a family birthday) was our fantastic server, Faye! Thank you Faye!

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Mississippi)·Dined on January 14, 2017

Our experience was absolutely excellent! The only negative that I can think of is the pricing. With the price of the food, you would expect there to be more of it.

Tags: Cozy, Good for a Date, Worth the Drive, Spicy, Quiet Conversation, Creative Cuisine
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food4
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on January 13, 2017

We were seated at a table where there was actually no light. I used my daughter's iphone to read menu. When we mentioned this to our waitress, she didn't do anything.

It seemed like the waitress couldn't handled more than one task at hand. She arrived to say that she would be back but didn't take our drink order. Two of the four got their drinks 10 minutes, my son and I waited over 20 minutes. Then she came back to take our order. Our meal took over 50 minutes to get to us, we order nothing special. For a Thursday night, it was quiet so I do not know why every task took really long.

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food3
ambience1
service1
value1

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on January 8, 2017

Thank you for this opportunity. We enjoyed our special event at el Pinto. Our waiter was good and from our appetizer to our entree was delicious! 😊 Your grounds are so beautiful though, we were there in January we have dined in the summer as well. Good job!

Tags: Comfort Food, Family Style, Historic, Sunday Lunch, Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion, Fireplace, Good for a Date, Scenic View, Cozy, Worth the Drive, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for Birthdays, Quiet Conversation, Local Ingredients, Outstanding Value
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food4
ambience5
service3
value5

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on January 8, 2017

Must have been an off night. The food was acceptable. We ordered the premium margaritas and I think they forgot the alcohol. The drink was very tart with a sweet overtone. No hint of alcohol could be tasted. Should have spoken up but by then I was a little too irritated with a door being left open close to our table with employees coming and going along with a cold breeze. The place was relatively empty for a 7:30 Saturday night reservation. My wife always gets a buzz from one drink but there was no buzz with these drinks. I felt like I was eating in a fast food franchise. Not going back for a while.

Tags: Good for Groups
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food1
ambience2
service2
value1

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on January 8, 2017

Prices are way to high!!! Their tostadas compuesta entree was $18.95 - 3 tostados, beans & rice - although I love it - it's not exactly a gourmet meal.

Tags: Happy Hour, Fireplace, Worth the Drive, Casual, Local Ingredients, Private Room, Good for Birthdays, Authentic, Romantic, Great for Lunch, Good for a Date, Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries, Family Style, Good for Groups, Organic
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food4
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on January 8, 2017

Food and service were fine, but we were put in the very back room of the restaurant, where the lighting was so poor, we literally had to get our phones out to read the menu. Do something about the back room lighting please!!

Tags: Worth the Drive
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food4
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 (New Mexico)·Dined on January 6, 2017

Really disappointed in the food. Very pricey. Not very good. Seem to be paying for ambiance but our table was a 4 chair wrought iron patio set and was not at all comfortable. Set on uneven bricks so chairs constantly rocked. Server was great but that couldn't make up for the not very good food and uncomfortable seating. Will be a really long time before I go back. ☹️

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food2
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value1

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