December 12th, 2021
The 14 Best Restaurants in Taos
Nestled in the north of New Mexico, Taos boasts an impressive blend of history, art, nature, and, most importantly for some, food. The town may be best known for its quaint plaza and looming mountains, but its range of culinary offerings is also rapidly growing in reputation.
Whether coming back from a fun day on the slopes, soaking in some culture at the local museums, or simply looking to delve into something to satisfy your taste buds—these are some of the best restaurants in Taos, Taos Ski Valley, and Arroyo Seco.
Restaurants in Taos, NM
For dinner with a taste of New Mexico, Orlando’s is a local favorite, with dishes like the chile relleno, grilled carne adovada, and blue corn enchiladas stealing the show. Orlando’s is located just outside of town, but the friendly service, spicy flavors, and ambiance are well worth the quick detour.
The portions are large, so come with a big appetite, and on a nice evening, be sure to grab a spot outside next to their fire pit. Best enjoyed with beer or agave wine margarita in hand!
Another New Mexican joint for people with an empty stomach, Mante’s Chow Cart is an unassuming hidden gem in Taos. Try the breakfast platter, chicharrón burrito, Susie burrito, or tuck into the Trujillo burrito, which is their new take on the chile relleno. The prices are extremely reasonable and the staff is well-known for their attentiveness.
Mante’s Chow Cart has a drive-through for people on the go or counter service if you want to sit and eat lunch indoors.
Found a block south of Taos Plaza, La Cueva Cafe may be little, but it makes up for it with the quality of its offerings. The restaurant is owned by a couple from Mexican, who prepare all the food fresh daily, using only natural ingredients. Ceviche Mexicano and the enchiladas de camarón enchipotladas are some of the most popular items, while the chicken mole enchiladas and fajitas are phenomenal also.
One of the busiest spots in town has lines for good reason. Michael’s Kitchen is a casual sit-down restaurant that’s been bringing New Mexican cuisine to people’s plates since 1974. Everything at Michael’s is prepared from scratch, and all the pastries are homemade, including the English muffins, donuts, and cinnamon rolls.
For brunch, order the Belly Buster (a burger with two patties, four bacon strips, all the trimmings, and fries), decadent French toast, a New Mexican take on Huevos Rancheros, or don’t be afraid to request tailormade dishes—if it’s in the kitchen, Michael’s will make it.
A healthier, lighter option for dining in Taos is Manzanita Market, an organic cafe that works with produce from local farmers and ranchers. The quaint location is ideal to enjoy a breakfast filled with whole foods, low sugar, and plenty of juices and super grains. Order the daily sandwich on sourdough, homemade biscuits with jam, and a fresh cup of coffee to start your day right. In the summer months, be sure to get the peppermint chocolate chip ice cream.
A classic Mexican restaurant in Taos, Guadalajara Grill was established in 1995 and has been putting mouth-watering food on the table ever since. The grill is very family-friendly with a great menu for kids, and the restaurant itself has a traditional Mexican cafeteria vibe to it. Come for lunch or dinner and ask for the Chile Colorado or Azteca Quesadilla—both are loaded with flavor and will keep you full for hours.
For something sweet, get the churros or buñuelo and ice cream to top off your Mexican flavor excursion.
Like the Guadalajara Grill, Antonio’s focuses on Mexican cuisine, rather than New Mexican—an important distinction to us locals; there is no mention of Christmas chiles in Mexican cuisine. However, Antonio’s—or Antonio’s “The Taste of Mexico”, its full name—leans more towards the fine dining side of Mexican tradition. While many of us here in the States associate Mexican food with street tacos and quick to-go burritos, Antonio’s is a great place to appreciate the depth of flavor and realm of possibilities that Mexican food can provide.
Restaurants in Taos Ski Valley
Currently open for dinner, 192 at The Blake is now accepting reservations. The restaurant is centered around a fireplace with alpine furniture that blends with a colorful New Mexico aesthetic, creating a cozy mountain-side atmosphere. With its reopening comes the debut of a brand new menu promising to be as delicious as ever. Early reviews point to the pappardelle with duck ragout and the pork chops with apricot and green chile chutney as the stars of the new menu. Reservations for dinner are required so plan ahead but then prepare yourself for some of the tastiest nibbles that Taos Ski Valley has to offer.
The Bavarian sits at the base of Lift 4 and is one of the coolest spots in the valley. The German-style chalet offers hearty dishes like veal bratwurst and warm pretzels served with mustard—and of course, specialty beers imported from Hofbräu Haus, Andechs Brewery, and Weltenburg Brewery in Germany. For those who prefer items closer to home, there’s a fine wine list, and American staples like burgers, sandwiches, and salads.
Come to sit on the deck and enjoy the warm sun (or snow flurries), cold beer, and a different view of the mountain than most Taos visitors are used to.
Located right by the slopes in Resort Plaza, Rhoda’s is one of the more convenient spots for skiers up for the day or for folks who have booked a weekend in our little mountain town. Aside from convenience, Rhoda’s is ideal to grab a drink post-slopes. Their outdoor bar with heaters offers a pleasant atmosphere to enjoy their rotating list of craft beers and batch cocktails. If you’re hungry you can also grab some small bites to go with your beverage of choice.
Looking for refined European alpine cuisine in Taos Ski Valley? Look no further. Blonde Bear Tavern is a bistro-style restaurant serving up a mixture of small plates, sandwiches, and sweets. The grilled chicken, huevos rancheros, and build-your-own burger are some of the best sellers, while the cocktails are always a hit for passing the evening on the beautiful patio.
You can also order online from Blonde Bear Tavern and enjoy the appetizing goods from the comfort of your own accommodation.
Restaurants in Arroyo Seco, NM and El Prado
Medley is the restaurant for fine dining in the Taos area. Run by a local couple, Medley’s menu is a mix of classic meals with a modern flair and a touch of New Mexico tradition, such as the mac and cheese with hot hatch green chile. There’s also a selection of innovative desserts, craft cocktails, and a wine list with bottles from around the world.
Spend the evening on the patio, watching the sunset over the mountains, as you savor some of the most delicious dishes in Taos. Afterward, head to the on-site wine shop for a souvenir or a bottle to bring back to your slopeside lodging.
Abe’s Cantina is a family-run business with traditional recipes rustled up with love and care. The menu is made up of New Mexican food, and the rolled chicken tacos and cup of green chile chili are a must-try when in town. Swing by for a quick bite or settle in for dinner in the evening with heavy portions, a big drink selection, sports on the TV, and games in the bar.
For a more sophisticated dining experience, go to ACEQ. The “farm-to-table” fusion restaurant boasts fresh fish, succulent meats, and exquisite pasta, topped off with wine or beer. If you have an especially rumbling stomach, opt for the 24oz, local, grass-fed wagyu/black angus hybrid bone-in ribeye—the texture and seasoning is incredible, making it one of the best steaks in the area.
The restaurant design is contemporary and great for hosting special occasions. It is also great fun to sit at the bar for the view of the cooks whipping up some tasty eats.
With these recommendations for restaurants in Taos, hungry tummies will never be disappointed and “hanger” will take a back seat during your trip to Taos and Taos Ski Valley. Check out our various lodging options to make a weekend out of your visit and remember to wear your comfortable pants. Buen provecho!