Local Counsel with Esteban A. "Steve" Aguilar Jr.
The Albuquerque attorney tells us what’s good in the neighborhood
Published in 2017 Southwest Super Lawyers magazine
on April 10, 2017
Updated on September 15, 2020
Best restaurant – Los Compadres on Historic Route 66 has become my favorite restaurant for authentic New Mexican food (the menudo and posole are dynamite), while El Pinto is our go-to recommendation for visitors. Even though we are in the heart of the high desert, Sushi Xuan has incredible food, which is always fresh.
Favorite quote about Albuquerque – Bugs Bunny and his infamous wrong turn. He should have just settled down and enjoyed the weather and culture, not to mention authentic Hatch green chile.
Weekend getaway – I like going to Taos and staying at El Monte Sagrado. I also enjoy Chama or Red River for breathtaking views of the mountains of northern New Mexico. The southern part of the state has amazing national parks, from Carlsbad Caverns—where you can watch the local Mexican free-tailed bats fly out in unison each evening in summer months—to White Sands, where you can actually surf the gypsum dunes.
Favorite local beer – Albuquerque has really made a name for itself as one of the top craft beer cities in the nation. Favorite places to go are Bosque Brewing Company (Riverwalker IPA is fantastic), the original Marble Brewery downtown (great IPA and Red Ale, plus great live music), and Boxing Bear on the west side (Umbers Cucumbers is a really nice saison).
Favorite breakfast spot – The Grove Café and Market on Historic Route 66 has the best English muffins around. Gold Street Caffe in downtown Albuquerque is always a favorite of mine, as well as Tia B’s La Waffleria in Nob Hill.
Best place to reflect – ABQ Biopark is gorgeous. I love going to the lake at the Sasebo Japanese Garden in the Botanic Garden during the summer to read.
Best view – The best view of the lights made famous by the 1986 Jim Glaser song is at The County Line Barbeque of Albuquerque on Tramway Blvd. NE. Ask for a table in the front room—you may wait a little bit longer, but there are great views.
Go-to sports venue – Isotopes Park is the stadium for our Triple-A baseball club, named from the team in The Simpsons.
Favorite coffee shop – Michael Thomas Coffee Roasters. Make sure to ask for a siphon—you won’t be disappointed.
Favorite pizza joint – Dion’s Pizza is a must-try, having been in the Duke City for nearly 40 years. Be warned, though: Once you try their homemade ranch dressing you can never go back.
Favorite city event – The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta just celebrated 45 years. Each year, more than 30,000 visitors come to enjoy hundreds of hot air balloons take flight. You can go to the grounds and watch weekend mass ascensions, or in the evenings you can watch balloon glows and the always-popular special shapes rodeo.