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Las Cruces, NM


dgreen
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Holy cow, what are the odds. I grew up here. Stand back and watch over 20 years of local yore fling into action.

Absolute #1 on the list-do not miss-plan your trip around it is Chope's Bar and Grill in La Mesa about 20 miles south of Mesilla on Highway 28. It's a little bit of a (lovely) drive (by Las Cruces standards anyway) but is THE place for southern NM style food. They have the best red enchilada sauce I've ever found and I HIGHLY recommend you get a chile relleno on the side no matter what else you do. They have lunch and dinner hours, but you should get there as soon after you open as possible as they fill up quickly and the wait can be long if your don't. If you do happen to have to wait you can go into the bar in a separate building next door and get the food there

In the city limits hidden in the back streets is Nellie's (1226 W Hadley Ave), a mexican joint that started 25 years ago as a burrito wagon and grew from there. Very, very good green enchiladas, but not for gringos. The salsa and sauces here can get seriously hot. They keep pretty odd hours though - I think only breakfast and lunch at this point.

I am also quite fond of the enchiladas (again I recommend the green) and Chile con Queso at either of the Nopalito's restaurants. The queso isn't what you'd usually think of but rather closer to a french onion soup sort of thing - a big island of gooey mexican cheese floating in their green sauce.

Roberto's has amazing burritos. I am partial to the green chile relleno or the green chile meat versions.

La Posta is the place that always gets mentioned in Las Cruces by people that aren't from Las Cruces - it was featured in a Life Magazine article in the 1950's - but I have never been all that in love with them. The place is certainly unique, and if you are in old town Mesilla it is worth walking into the entry area and checking out the exotic birds and piranha aquariums they have set up in the waiting area, but there is much, much better mexican food elsewhere around town.

If you're really not in the mood for mexican, I'd first advise you to try to get in the mood (because you are in green chile Mecca after all) but if you absolutely can't take anymore...there's a small local chain of Italian restaurants called Lorenzo's. Not life changing by any means but there's some good stuff going on there.

Also of note: Ranchway BBQ, El Comedor, Chilito's

Let me know if you have any questions (as if I haven't already dominated the topic enough.)

Cheers,

durwoodx

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Holy cow, what are the odds. I grew up here. Stand back and watch over 20 years of local yore fling into action.

:angry:

Thanks for the advice. It's a work trip and I'll have to share a rental car with a coworker, but hopefully I can steer him towards some of these...or maybe I'll the car to myself one evening.

If you're really not in the mood for mexican, I'd first advise you to try to get in the mood (because you are in green chile Mecca after all) but if you absolutely can't take anymore...

I'll only be there 3-4 days, so I doubt I'll tire of real Mexican food.

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Hit Roberto's, Si Senor, and Cattlemen's Steakhouse. Cattlemen's wasn't the worst steak I've ever had, but it wasn't anything great either. Just meh. Really enjoyed Roberto's and Si Senor. At Si Senor, the complementary chips came with four salsas/dips. A regular red salsa, a bean and something, a green chili salsa (the same stuff they pour over the burritos), and a sour cream and jalapeno.

I said that I doubted that I'd tire of real Mexican food. Well, my taste buds didn't, but my stomach did. It was all very good (even the lunch served at the college), but I had to take a break.

Thanks for the recommendations.

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