Thursday, November 20, 2014

El Modelo Mexican Foods

November 10, 2006 by  

El Modelo New Mexican Restaurant Albuquerque

1715 Second Street SW
Albuquerque NM, 87102
505-242-1843
8am – 6:45pm
~MENU~

El Modelo Mexican Food has been around since the 30′s making homemade tortillas and tamales. Located on 2nd street right off of Bridge street, El Modelo’s catered to the railroad repair shop workers across the street until the shop closed down in the 70′s. Today El modelo’s is an Albuquerque institution, known for its fresh tamales and tortillas.

El Modelo’s is a take out restaurant offering no place to eat just a bench and a couple of tables in an outside patio. You place an order at the counter and wait to be called. Food is modestly served in butcher paper and food containers. Although El Modelo’s is always busy, the orders usually come out very fast.

El Modelo’s is known for their masa(dough) used for making tamales and white corn tortillas. The menu features dinner plates, specialties such as tamale compuesto (a tamale topped with red chile, meat, lettuce, cheese and tostada chips), special made burritos and side orders. I usually get a dozen of tamales and the stuffed sopaipilla plate. Their food is excellent and very consistent. If you don’t know what to order just get the Mexican plate which comes with a tamale, taco, enchilada, spare rib and rice and beans. If you are ordering for a group El Modelo’s serves their food al la carte in pint and quart containers. El Modelo’s prices are a little expensive compared to other places.

El Modelo’s offers good food, friendly service and a look in to Albuquerque’s history. If you haven’t tried El Modelo’s, the trip is well worth it.

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El Modelo Mexican Foods, 9.0 out of 10 based on 94 ratings
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Comments

37 Responses to “El Modelo Mexican Foods”
  1. Manny says:

    Love the Food,however the prices are a little too much .A dozen of Tamales are about 28.00 dollars a dozen,where you can get them at Vargas for 15.00 a dozen.

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  2. A. Barela says:

    I’m from the Oakland Bay Area in beautiful California but my family has been from Albuquerque for many generations. Every chance I get I go to El Modelo when I’m in town or my Mom has it waiting for me upon my arrival. I noticed you describe El Modelo as Mexican food but I’ve always known it to be authentic NEW Mexican food! A friend of mine and her husband are taking a motorcycle ride through some of the states and I’m giving them the address to make sure they stop by El Modelo to eat some great New Mexican food! Like the stuffed sopaipillas, they are the best! They will be coming all the way from San Ramon, CA and I know they won’t be dissapointed!

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  3. best tamales in the world!

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  4. MexicanFoodAddict says:

    Food is good if it didn’t have roach legs!

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  5. Jessica Robertson says:

    This is the best place to eat and the only thing from NM I realllllly miss. There is nothing better than their Carne Ardavada Burritos and Tamales…. YUMMY

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  6. terry brown says:

    i moved from new mexico in 1992 to fairbanks alaska. and one of the only things i miss is the food from el modelo’s i truly wih i could get it up here people from alaska have no tast budes. i miss you ohhhhhh so. thanks for such good food. if you can send me some let me know.

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  7. Regular says:

    Mr/Mrs MexicanFoodAddict…
    I dont no where you come off or what drug you are on but THERE ARE NO ROACH LEGS IN THE FOOD! You need to get a life. I have been going there consistently for the past 10 years and THERE HAS NEVER ONCE BEEN ROACH LEGS!!!!! That is a stick spice you are referring to. In the future, check your facts before DOLLING OUT COMPLETE AND UTTER BS!!!!!!!!!

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  8. Barbara Olguin says:

    I have been eating at El Modelo for over 30 years and it is the best food in town. I recommend it to everyone I know. My favorite is the Number 1 combination plate. It has everything on it. I love the chile ribs you add to it.

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  9. Alexis says:

    El Modelo is the BEST AMAZING NEW MEXICAN FOOD IN THE ENTIRE COUNTRY!!! This place was built in 1929 and looks like an old warehouse. The best thing to order here is a stuffed sopapilla. If you’ve never had one of those, it will blow your mind. A sopapilla is like a dough that is fried in a triangular shape and puffs up, which is then filled with any type of ingredient you like such as beans, shredded beef briscut, carnitas, cheese, lettace, etc. If you want to keep it simple, get a plain sopapilla and eat with honey or sugar. Makes for a great dessert. If you’re not sure about the sopapillas, try a talmale either green or red…absolutely delicious! This isn’t a indoor seating restaurant, but is great for take out or enjoy the beautiful weather on the bench seating outside. GO THERE IF YOU EVER CAN.

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  10. Adrian says:

    Completely agree with you Alexis, their stuffed sopapilla is excellent and at $2.50, its a steal.

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  11. Rick says:

    Best Mexican regional food! (Northern Mexico Southwestern USA) I know, I know this is New Mexico and not Mexico any more, but the food is still the same as it was back than

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  12. Abuelo Anderson says:

    My family and I have eaten take-out food from El Modelo for 40 years. Their food has been consistantly flavorful and fresh ever time we have ordered. We have traveled from our assignments aboard in Europe, South America, and the Middle East to eat the #1 combo Mexican plate, sopapillas, and El Modelo tamales. Their food is unique and “world class”, especially the tamales…muy sabrosos! You can not have New Mexico cuisine without a meal from El Modelo.

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  13. Deb says:

    Talk about the best tamales ever. We as a family of three can buy the tamale plate and share it, it is huge and amazingly tasty. I lived an hour away and we would always get a stuffed sopa to eat on the way home. OMG! I am now in Hawaii and was hoping they had shipping, I should have known better, but I am desperate for Modelo, especially during Christmas, I had to at least check….wishful thinking. So, if you get a chance go there, it looks like a dive but believe me it is as clean as you can get. They pride themselves on it!

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  14. Patricio says:

    I am a food connoisseur and I know high quality and simple food. El Modelo tamales are of this caliber. Let me tell you how great this restaurant is. If I ate here once or twice a week, every week, I would be dissappointed eating at other Mexican restaurants. I would be spoiled rotten eating here so I would have to eat here every day but I don’t do that because it’s impractable. So I limit myself between Thanksgiving and Christmas. It is a nice tradition. Oh, and I don’t have to pay a dime for them. My bankers do that.

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  15. Sally Gonzalez says:

    We are former residents of Albuquerque now living in southern NM. When we come to Albuq. for visits or doctor appts. we always stop in to get a dozen tamales. Even though they are a little pricey, they are filled with huge chunks of meat and lots of good hot red chile. And they are wrapped in lots of corn husks with the masa interspersed between the leaves as you unwrap them. It is a thrill to take little bites as you try to get to the middle and from there on it is pure heaven! One easily makes a full meal and maybe two for a big guy. Smother them in red chile for a real treat!

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  16. lsave says:

    for the person who said that it’s not mexico anymore I don’t think it ever was it’s always been NEW MEXICO don’t know where you came from better check your facts. if you want MEXICO go to MEXCIO….

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  17. Elaine Rey says:

    We go right from the airport to El Modelo for the best New Mexican food we can eat. The plates are so big we have eaten on them for two days. We are from Albuquerque by live in Texas boy do we miss eating the tamales, stuffed sopaipillas, flat tacos with green beans, and the number one plate. Eat and enjoy because we recommend this wonderful place to everyone who is coming to Albuquerque!

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  18. Tamales hard as bricks! says:

    These used to be the best tamales in New Mexico, but not any more. Recently, something has change in the El Modelo kitchen. I’ve eaten El Modelo tamales since 1979 because their tamales were large and tender and loaded with moist spicy meat. I bought them regularly by the dozen. But not any more! Their tamales have changed. They are hard as bricks. The masa is not edible; it’s heavy and dry and chewy like shoe leather. The meat is almost not visible and the sauce has no flavor. The corn husks are embeded in the dense masa making unwrapping the tamale an exercise in destruction. TWICE in the past weeks I actually returned partial dozen bags for a $28.15 refund. I will not be trying El Modelo tamales again. Two very bad experiences were one too many.

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  19. WestsideWendy says:

    I get a couple dozen Tamales every Christmas for our out of town visitors. They usually don’t last more then a couple days.

    People are complaining about the price, but have you ever made Tamales? they are very labor intensive. If cheep is what you want, I think Walmart sells those frozen Bueno bricks.

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  20. black celebs says:

    Sign: wdpad Hello!!! uffyb and 7525geuupaqxqm and 5406 : I love your site. :) Love design!!! I just came across your blog and wanted to say that Ive really enjoyed browsing your blog posts.

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  21. needbagels says:

    Absolutely the best stuffed sopapillas. I travel quite a bit and have food from all over. I love food. The stuffed sopapillas at the Modelo are by far the best I have ever eaten. I also love the tostadas with green beans. I think it is great that they figured out how to successfully use green beans in a traditional Hispanic food. The staff is always friendly, I can eat there for under $5 and be completely satisfied. Yet it is hard to go for lunch and not pick up more for dinner.

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  22. Will says:

    Can’t go wrong! Always soooo good! You pick whatever, it’s all good. Mouth gets all watery just thinking about it! Aww man!!! Now I gotta go back… like right now! Cya

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  23. Chicos Tacos Freak says:

    Hey I love El Modelo, I have also had the pleasure of helping my step dad out there when he and my mom used to work there when Virginia(owner) made us feel like family. I used to help clean, what can I say I was a kid back than early nineties. I love the food I can always remember eating the Stuffed Sopapillas and the tamales. And all the comments on this page are wonderful It takes me back, and yes the original thing about El Modelo is that it has big chunks of meat type plates all the way to home made tortillas. I now live in my hometown of El Paso but for years when I used to live in Albuquerque I loved going to eat there. More than 15 years and I cant forget one of New Mexico’s Hidden Treasures!!

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  24. jacques says:

    Hi just to let you know love spicey food and we dont have mexican take outs in S.A in cape town ever thinking of opening 1 in S.A.

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  25. PAT says:

    I grew up in Albuquerque eating mexican food from this take out. The Garcia family originally owned this restaurant. There is no place in Albuquerque that makes Tamales as big as theirs. The flat tacos and stuffed sopillpas are also excellent.
    Living in Texas makes me home sick for their food.

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  26. Paul Sanchez says:

    I just got back from your store. You were very busy being Xmas eve. However, when I got home I did not receive the pint of red chile meat that I had ordered and paid for. I verified my order at the time I paid for it. I’ve been a customer for 40 years, this has happened once before. If I wasn’t addicted to your tamales I don’t know what I’d do.

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  27. Pat Chavez says:

    i grew up next door to El Modelo (La Torteria) in 1956, my mom worked there before i was born and if anyone remembers Toni – forever Love! Owners were Salvador and Agapito, Isabel, etc.!! No one mentions the original recipes I believe the recipes were Veracruz have to check my familia facts – the green bean taco was called the “regular” yum yum!!

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  28. Pat Chavez says:

    i grew up next door to El Modelo (La Torteria) in 1956, my mom worked there before i was born and if anyone remembers Toni – forever Love! Owners were Salvador and Agapito, Isabel, etc.!! No one mentions the original recipes I believe the recipes were Veracruz have to check my familia facts – the green bean taco was called the “regular” yum yum!!

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  29. Zobar says:

    I grew up eating food from El Modelo. Most every wedding I would go to would have tamales or enchiladas trays made there. I ate there so often that it became the norm and expected. Then I moved away from the south valley and began expanding my culinary experience across the country as I traveled for business purposes. I would say I have eaten at some the best and some of the worst eating establishments across the country. Several people refer to me as a foodie as I really enjoy the culinary experience. Over the years this process has made me somewhat of a food snob and although I will try each experience at least twice, I have fired several eating establishments and will not return. Then there is El Modelo, I continue to return not only because of how great their food is, but also because of how consistent the quality has been over the years. I always order a la carte because of my preference in entrées. My order almost always consists of a stuffed sopaipilla and a flat taco with the green beans. On occasion I will order a tamale or carne adovada, but I can usually count on my wife to try different stuff on the menu allowing me to sample what she gets. I can honestly say that I have never had a bad meal at El Modelo and I look forward to many more. I will say that since I have become a little bit older and wiser about my health, I have to limit the amount of this type of food I can eat, but I sure look forward to it when I get it. Thank you El Modelo for your years of get food!

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  30. jean says:

    wish you guys would fed ex 2 washington DC Please

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  31. Amy says:

    We just moved from ABQ to San Antonio TX in August. It’s Christmas time and I WANT EL MODELO TAMALES!!! I just called and they don’t ship? I’m so bummed. No One makes tamales or carne adovada like El Modelo! :(

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  32. barelas says:

    Born and raised off Modelo second best to my grandmas only complaint I have it’s customer
    Service those Spanish girls be tripping

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  33. I am actually glad to glance at this weblog posts which contains plenty of
    helpful information, thanks for providing these statistics.

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  1. [...] In the years that followed, I sought Mexican wherever I could. Florida and Texas were illuminating; New York City was surprisingly wan. Albuquerque, New Mexico introduced me to the green/red chile culture, expressed through huevos rancheros, brisket with green chile, and the Louvre of Albuquerque Mexican: El Modelo. [...]

  2. [...] Recommendation Filed under: Culture, Food, Personal — by teofilo @ 11:39 pm For lunch today some of my coworkers took me to El Modelo’s.  It’s in a particularly hard-core part of Barelas, right by the railyard, and the lunchtime crowd there was heavily old-school Hispanic.  We ordered stuffed sopaipillas, which are their specialty, and they turned out to be excellent and amazingly filling (and cheap; less than $3 each!).  The people in our party who had been there before said that the service is usually extremely fast, but while we were there the sopaipilla machine apparently broke and it took them 40 minutes to get us our food, making us late getting back to the office.  It was totally worth it, though.  If you’re ever in Barelas, give it a try. [...]

  3. [...] 21 Sat – arrived in ABQ airport at 1PM.  We went straight to our first CHEAP EAT list at the “El Modelo” – we ordered the sampler and huevos rancheros with a large horchata which totalled about [...]

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