First off, let me say this about The Dog House Drive In. Here’s why I give it 5 Stars (my top recommendation). This is the best of its kind. No, it’s not a classic 5-star restaurant. It is the best of its kind. When you want a tasty cheeseburger and fries or a spicy chile-cheese dog and onion rings, you’re not going to look for a Michelin rated French cafe with lace curtains. You want the Dog House on Albuquerque’s Route 66! As burger joints go, this is one of the very best in Albuquerque.
The Dog House gained a bit of celebrity from being featured in the Breaking Bad crime drama television series. I never watched Breaking Bad. And, truth be told, I would never eat at a restaurant simply because it was on TV. However, I noticed something about The Dog House Drive In that is a dead giveaway that it is something very special. Lots of locals eat here. Lots! They bring their kids, their dates and their friends. That’s a good sign in Albuquerque. Folks here are very loyal if the food is good. And they are loyal to The Dog House.
New Mexico Soul Food
The Dog House serves premium quality burgers (at McDonald’s prices), fries, and are well known for their foot long hot dogs. If you love red chile you will love The Dog House. This is not Texas Chili, it’s New Mexico red chile. The chile is slow-cooked and spicy with just a bit of heat. It provides the perfect complement for the burgers and dogs. New Mexico usually gives its green chile center stage when it comes to burgers. In The Dog House, spicy red chile is the star of the show. It adds a flavorful kick with just a hint of heat to the burgers and dogs. Don’t be ashamed to lick it off your fingers. Everyone else does!
As I waited for my order, I noticed how they prepared the foot-long dogs for the griddle. Each dog was sliced in two lengthwise so that it had a nice crispy char on the inside as it cooked. It’s one of those little details that remind you this is the real deal. Oh yes, I’ll be coming back for some more ‘dogs!
I also tried the double patty chili cheeseburger with red chile sauce and a side order of fries. On another visit, I had the perfect grilled cheese sandwich. All were packed with flavor. This is Route 66 greasy-spoon heaven! When you’re in Albuquerque, The Dog House is the perfect reason to bypass McDonalds or Wendy’s. The prices are about the same, and you’re getting the sort of home-grown New Mexico goodness that no national chain can match.
The decor is classic greasy spoon but spotless. Family-owned, the staff is friendly and unpretentious. Like most of Albuquerque’s best eateries, its all about the food here. Most folks just roll into the parking lot, place an order (a server comes to your car) and ‘chow down’ in the car or truck. So do what the locals do. Check out The Dog House. This is old school fast-food flavored with New Mexico soul!