About El Pinto

Nestled in the cottonwoods, El Pinto was founded with eight tables in 1962. Twin brothers John and Jim Thomas, known as the Salsa Twins, carry on the family tradition and have expanded El Pinto into the quintessential "Spot" for healthy and fresh New Mexican cuisine. Experience an authentic Taste of New Mexico.

The Salsa Twins are pairing tradition with innovative healthy nutrition at El Pinto. 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 daily use. An onsite green house produces over 5,000 lbs of organically grown greens.

Freshness is throughout El Pinto. El Pinto uses chile from Hatch, NM, dryland beans from CO, healthy sunflower oil for frying, Celtic sea salt for seasoning, and local ingredients when in season.

It has been featured on Food Network, Travel Channel and the BBC among other places.

10500 4th St NW
Albuquerque, NM 87114
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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

4.4

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.2

service

4.3

ambience

4.5

value

3.9

noise

Moderate

91% would recommend it to a friend

Authentic (83)
Special Occasion (74)
Local Ingredients (71)
See All
Good for Groups (70)
Great for Outdoor Dining (69)
Good for a Date (67)
Casual (63)
Worth the Drive (54)
Fireplace (53)
Spicy (52)
Historic (52)
Good for Birthdays (51)
Good for Anniversaries (45)
Cozy (40)
Neighborhood Gem (39)
Fun (39)
Romantic (38)
Comfort Food (36)
Family Style (36)
Great for Lunch (33)
Sunday Lunch (32)
Creative Cuisine (31)
Business Meals (29)
Kid-friendly (28)
Scenic View (26)
Handcrafted Cocktails (24)
Great for Brunch (24)
Fit for Foodies (24)
Hot Spot (21)
Happy Hour (21)
Good Vegetarian Options (19)
Quiet Conversation (19)
Bar Seating (18)
Disabled Access (17)
Healthy (17)
Outstanding Value (14)
Gluten Free Options (13)
Private Room (12)
Organic (11)
Tasting Menu (10)
People Watching (10)
Pre/post Theatre (7)
Vibrant Bar Scene (7)
Modern Decor (7)
Tapas (6)
Seasonal (6)
Vegan (6)
Great Beer (5)
Live Music (5)
Paleo Friendly (4)
Quick Bite (4)
Wood Oven (4)
Molecular Gastronomy (3)
Notable Wine List (3)
Afternoon Coffee (2)
Late-night Find (2)
Open Kitchen (2)
Dancing (2)
Afternoon Tea (1)
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1007 reviews
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 (Houston)·Dined 3 days ago

We had some friends in from out of town. Your staff was awesome. We were seated immediately and they were all so friendly.
The Rita's were fab and we are never disappointed by the food and ambiance. We had our rehearsal dinner there last year!!!

Tags: Authentic, Paleo Friendly, Cozy, Fun, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined 3 days ago

El pinto is always one of our favorites. The mosquitos however are horrible. The last time we were there we basically got eaten alive. This time we chose to sit inside which is less pretty, just to avoid them. The chips and salsa are awesome and they have great margaritas!

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Good for Anniversaries, Authentic, Spicy, Great for Outdoor Dining
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food3
ambience4
service4
value3

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined 3 days ago

There's much to like about El Pinto; the site itself, including parking under old cottonwoods, the venue with all of its mysterious large and small areas/alcoves, Gracie the cat, usually very good service, the ability to make reservations on-line, El Pinto's aggressive of not only using, but also developing the use of, genuine, local products. For me, though, the menu is a bit limited. Fortunately (for me) it doesn't follow the New Mexico cuisine of making everything so hot it's inedible. However, on the other hand, it would be nice to have a few more, genuinely MEXICAN, dishes--say fajitas, say the opportunity to choose a combination of several types of enchiladas on an enchilada plate, etc. However, I and my family will definitely keep coming. It's really the best place to take guests from out of town who want to taste the local cuisine, but who, one knows, will get completely burned out on the typical New Mexican cuisine.

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays, Good for Groups, Great for Outdoor Dining
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food2
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined 3 days ago

El Pinto has been, and still is, a favorite restaurant of our family. Great location and ambiance. Wonderful menu choices. And, the service is excellent. The food is not as great as it used to be - the green chili dishes are not as spicy as I like - they've toned it down for the non-NM customers. But, still a good lunch or dinner choice.

Tags: Sunday Lunch, Worth the Drive, Great for Brunch, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays, Creative Cuisine, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Groups, Disabled Access, Scenic View, Spicy, Good for Anniversaries, Great for Lunch
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food4
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined 4 days ago

As always, great food, great service, great atmosphere. Our favorite place to eat in Albuquerque

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining, Creative Cuisine, Disabled Access, Special Occasion, Vegan, Authentic, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined 4 days ago

Overall we had a very good dining experience at El Pinto. We called the restaurant to let them know that our reservation had changed from 7 to 4 people & that we would be arriving a little earlier than our initial reservation. The person I spoke with told us this was not a problem. When we arrived our table was not ready but only had to wait briefly as they bused our table. When we were seated we were put at a table right along a main walkway through the patio area of the restaurant. The table would have been fine for 2 people but they crammed 4 of us into this table. Two people in our party had to basically sit in the walkway. The restaurant was very busy & this was a terrible place to seat a table of 4. Our waiter said we could move to a nearby table that had just become available. The hostess was very rude to us when we moved over to this table. The waiter & the food were excellent but the hostess was rude & seemed frazzled & disorganized.

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Special Occasion, Casual, Worth the Drive
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food5
ambience5
service3
value4

 
·Dined 5 days ago

We really didn't have a great experience this visit. The kitchen somehow lost half our order. Then when they finally brought the food out for the half that was missing, they ended up putting the wrong orders down in front of the wrong people. Manager said she'd take a few meals off the ticket. But she never did. We didn't notice until after the bill was already paid. If it wasn't for the great friends we were dining with, the entire night would have been a bust.

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food3
ambience5
service3
value3

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined 5 days ago

Great service! Had a great time, family goes there every year during our annual visit home!

Tags: Good for Groups, Sunday Lunch, Good for Anniversaries, Comfort Food, Authentic, Special Occasion, Kid-friendly, Worth the Drive, Great for Outdoor Dining, Casual
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food4
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined 6 days ago

Always excellent...very consistent, never disappoints!

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Special Occasion, Good Vegetarian Options, Spicy, Great for Outdoor Dining, Gluten Free Options, Authentic, Great for Lunch, Good for Birthdays
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 17, 2017

Have been here several times and have never been disappointed. My son chose El Pinto for his high school graduation dinner with family.

Tags: Authentic, Special Occasion, Casual, Great for Brunch, Local Ingredients, Good for Groups
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Charleston)·Dined on May 17, 2017

Great food. Green chili cheeseburger was to die for. Vegetarian burrito was a big hit. Green chili chicken stew was awesome. Service was attentive and on the spot. Price was perfect. Good value!!

Tags: Special Occasion, Scenic View, Healthy, Spicy, Family Style, Tapas, Cozy
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 16, 2017

We were assigned an outside table, the weather changed in a matter of minutes, we asked the waitress for an inside table and she got so mad and non pleasant, she asked us to move our drinks, salsas and chips with us. I thank her and she ignored me. Few minutes after we moved started raining and the wind was cold and awful. Once the other waitress came to introduce herself the service turn out great, food was delicious and the place is beautiful.

Tags: Good for a Date, Disabled Access, Special Occasion, Gluten Free Options, Late-night Find, Good for Groups, Hot Spot, Fun, Spicy, Happy Hour, Worth the Drive, Good Vegetarian Options, Cozy, Bar Seating, Local Ingredients, Good for Birthdays, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for Anniversaries, Sunday Lunch, Authentic, Comfort Food, Great for Brunch, Great for Lunch
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food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
 (Denver)·Dined on May 15, 2017

Went on advice from friends and glad we did. Chilli ribs and chicken were flavorful something different.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Creative Cuisine, Fun
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food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 15, 2017

Our granddaughter and her friend were visiting from Ohio and she wanted her friend to have "real" New Mexico food. El Pinto was her choice and we didn't regret it. We sat on the patio enjoying the ambience and a beautiful, relaxing evening. Although there was a large (20 or more) table next to us, our server was attentive and helpful. The food was very good and they even accommodated some changes we asked for. A truly memorable evening for all of us.

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining, Authentic, Kid-friendly, Casual, Good Vegetarian Options
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food4
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 14, 2017

We were entertaining our visiting adult son from Denver. He was very impressed. We all loved the food. Thank you. Katie Walton

Tags: Authentic, Local Ingredients, Organic, Healthy, Neighborhood Gem, Fit for Foodies
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 14, 2017

I live the atmosphere! The red chile ribs are to die for!

Tags: Tasting Menu, Casual, Special Occasion, Romantic, Family Style, Authentic, Historic, Good for Groups
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 14, 2017

Excellent customer service and great food. We went to celebrate my wife's recent graduation. We had a rather large party that included two dogs. The staff was more than helpful in accommodating a very nice spot on the patio next to a patch of grass for the pooches. The margaritas and sangria were on point, as usual, and the menu was diverse enough to satisfy everyone's tastes, including milk bones for the dogs, and tolerance to chile. Definitely a 10 out of 10 experience.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Authentic, Worth the Drive, Hot Spot, Great for Outdoor Dining, Scenic View, Spicy
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 13, 2017

We always love going to El Pinto! It is a truly unique place with superb New Mexican food. Highly recommend! Can be loud, but doesn't take away in my opinion.

Tags: Great for Lunch, Good for Birthdays, Fun, Sunday Lunch, Local Ingredients, Spicy, Fireplace, Historic, Great for Outdoor Dining, Kid-friendly, Good for Anniversaries, Romantic, Great for Brunch, Good for Groups, Authentic, Special Occasion, Good for a Date
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on May 12, 2017

Sat on the patio and listened to very nice music. Thoroughly enjoyed everything. It was even better than last time we were here!

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food5
ambience5
service5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 11, 2017

We ended up having more than the 13 show up for dinner. It was a hug imposition for the Waitresses and waiters. We asked for outside and they said our group was too big to fit outside. That was a disappointment, as it was very dark and the room had NO ambiance. Disappointing. Very dark. During our presentation to our person we were honoring, the manager kept interrupting to add one more guest (he could have waiting until our President was finished talking).

Tags: Local Ingredients
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food3
ambience2
service2
value2

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on May 11, 2017

The food was a bit on the bland side and barely warm when served. I had more beans and rice than I did entree--way out of proportion. Paying $11 for a margarita that had nothing special about it, I expected it to be at least 3 times larger than it was. The server was really good and friendly and the soapapillas at the end were a nice touch.

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food3
ambience3
service5
value1

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 10, 2017

We had 2 small children so it was perfect for with family or for a romantic evening!! We loved it!

Tags: Historic, Business Meals, Local Ingredients, Special Occasion, Romantic, Good for a Date, Happy Hour
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food3
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Central Coast)·Dined on May 10, 2017

We come here every time we're in Albuquerque, great place to bring friends. Service a bit slow this time, but still enjoyable. The atmosphere is great. We like that the red chili sauce has choice of mild or spicy....we like spicy but others in the party didn't so nice to have the choice.

Tags: Organic, Healthy, Good for Groups, Spicy, Fun, Local Ingredients
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food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (San Diego)·Dined on May 7, 2017

Perfect lunch for my sons birthday. Excellent food and service.

Tags: Quick Bite, Good for Birthdays, Good for a Date, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 7, 2017

We thoroughly enjoyed the Sunday Brunch on the east patio, celebrating our daughter's birthday. The brunch menu was both creative and delicious, especially the blueberry scones and fried chicken and the red chili eggs Benedict. The ambience of the patio setting was lovely, and the service was friendly and efficient. The only distraction was a yoga class being conducted on the adjacent grounds, with instructions over a loudspeaker competing with the nice guitar music piped onto the patio.

Tags: Local Ingredients, Special Occasion, Sunday Lunch, Great for Brunch, Great for Outdoor Dining
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 7, 2017

Beautiful atmosphere, but poor service, very expensive. Waitstaff forgot a meal we ordered and finally brought it out when everyone else was almost done. Took forever to get alcoholic drink order brought to the table and even longer for refill wait. Won't go back anytime soon.

Tags: Authentic, Special Occasion
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food4
ambience5
service3
value3

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 7, 2017

Absolutely wonderful food and fabulous service and atmosphere!

Tags: Comfort Food, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for Anniversaries, Tasting Menu, Romantic, Casual
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 6, 2017

The food was not worth the wait. The waiter dropped food on us twice and too forever to take our order, refill drinks, and bring us the food. We waited over an hour after being sat to have our order taken. And the attitude of the waiter on top of his slow service was blood boiling. I wouldn't recommend anyone going there for neither the service or food was even somewhat decent.

Tags: Scenic View
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food1
ambience1
service1
value1

 
 (Chicago)·Dined on May 6, 2017

My parents were visiting from out of town and we decided to celebrate Mothers' day early with them and my in-laws. I love the beauty of El Pinto. But each time I eat here, I'm fairly disappointed with the food especially for the price. I thought the chicken enchiladas and the taco plate were so so- didn't have much flavor. My waiter forgot to bring me my drink and for the cost of the meal, I would not come here again.

Tags: Romantic, Good for Groups, Scenic View, Great for Outdoor Dining
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food2
ambience5
service3
value1

 
 (Denver)·Dined on May 6, 2017

Great atmosphere and service. We all thought the food was just ok, especially for the higher prices.

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food3
ambience5
service5
value2

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 6, 2017

Everything was perfect and the waitress was good as well

Tags: Happy Hour, Good for Birthdays, Great for Brunch, Private Room, Notable Wine List
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Denver)·Dined on May 6, 2017

we always visit El Pinto as we pass through enroute to AZ. If you don't have reservations, be prepared to wait. The wait is worth it, though!

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Fun, Good for Birthdays, Vibrant Bar Scene, Good for a Date, Worth the Drive, Bar Seating, Great for Outdoor Dining, Historic, Authentic
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 6, 2017

Lovely venue, food was very good best sopallias I've had so far. Despite it being cinco de mayo we weren't rushed will be returning here

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food5
ambience5
service3
value4

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 5, 2017

Food was very good, service was excellent, but the prices are astronomical.

Tags: Local Ingredients, Fireplace, Worth the Drive, Bar Seating, Spicy, Historic, Comfort Food, Happy Hour, Handcrafted Cocktails, Authentic, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays
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food4
ambience2
service4
value3

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 5, 2017

El Pinto has always been a great place to have a special occasion. The ambiance is 5 star and the food is always just right.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Casual, Local Ingredients, Worth the Drive, Special Occasion, Romantic, Great for Outdoor Dining, Family Style, Good for Groups, Good for a Date
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food4
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on May 4, 2017

I had family in town and always take them to El Pinto. It is my all time favorite restaurant in Albuquerque. My family, from Oregon, said they were hoping that was where we were going. We were also celebrating my Granddaughters 8th birthday.
Our server, Cierra was THE BEST!! She really made us feel "special". She was the very professional and helpful.

Tags: Good for Birthdays, Scenic View, Local Ingredients, Fireplace, Casual, Special Occasion, Good for a Date, Comfort Food, Historic, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on May 3, 2017

Our server was very attentive, helpful, engaging and friendly. The food was excellent and there was a lot of variety. Margaritas were incredible!! Great patio seating with live music. We had out of town family visiting and it was a great representation of New Mexican food!! I highly recommend.

Tags: Dancing, Family Style, Sunday Lunch, Disabled Access, Authentic, Casual, Business Meals, Fit for Foodies, Good for a Date, Good for Anniversaries, Comfort Food, Great for Lunch, Gluten Free Options, Spicy, Kid-friendly, Great for Outdoor Dining, Special Occasion, Private Room, People Watching, Good Vegetarian Options, Worth the Drive, Good for Birthdays
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food4
ambience4
service4
value3

 
 (New Mexico)·Dined on April 30, 2017

Have always enjoyed our suppers at El Pinto. Food is excellent and staff is friendly and helpful. Great place, everyone always enjoyed this outing on special occasions. Great job!!

Tags: Disabled Access, Authentic, Historic, Local Ingredients, Organic, Comfort Food, Casual, Fit for Foodies, Cozy, Special Occasion, Good for Groups, Fireplace, Family Style, Healthy
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Denver)·Dined on April 30, 2017

authentic mexican in a beautiful garden setting. great place!

Tags: Good for a Date
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food4
ambience5
service4
value3

vip
 (Memphis)·Dined on April 30, 2017

Unfortunately, El Pinto seems to be relying on its history instead of current quality to attract customers. Cool place, but poor quality mass-produced food on every menu item we tried. Years ago this place was great and we were disappointed to see the decline in quality. Perhaps they have expanded too much?

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food2
ambience3
service3
value2

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