1501 Mountain Road NW
Albuquerque, New Mexico
open Wed-Sat noon 7pm, special dinner menu
We stopped into
this two-year old establishment on a Friday afternoon
around 2pm. There wasn't anyone else there, so we
were seated immediately, and the friendly, attentive
waitress (who we both found super cute, by the way)
started up some funky music while we waited for
The building is pretty
plain from the outside, but they've done a great
job with decorating. It's very bright and airy inside,
with skylights to let in lots of natural light.
Plants were all around, and there were hardwood
floors, and many paintings on the walls. The décor
is largely African, from the wall hangings to the
paintings, which suits, as it is own by three African
American folks (two women and a man), and staffed
by them and what seem to be their friends.
The menu is totally
tantalizing, with lots of delicious options. Most
of the items aren't vegan, but can easily be made
so. We started out with the soup of the day
both options (corn chowder and split pea) were,
according to the chef, "absolutely vegan,"
and we went with the split pea. It was a healthy
serving and piping hot, very flavorful without being
spicy. The delicious veggie broth had a nice amount
of split peas (obviously), onion, zucchini, greens
and (we think) some lentils.
It was tough to choose
an entrée we had the choice of BBQ
burgers (one vegan, one non), a cold sandwich, grilled
cheese, the Jambalaya rice boat, African burrito,
taco, bean of the day and rice, hummus and pita
bread, seasoned curry tofu salad, and more. We finally
decided on the hot sandwich and the seaweed wraps.
The sandwich came
on a gorgeous wheat bun, with apple slices, lettuce,
green bell pepper slices, a strip of fake bacon,
and smothered in BBQ sauce. The crisp, sweet apple
was great with the BBQ sauce (which was somewhat
sweet itself), and the tofu slices were thick and
tasty. They didn't skimp on portions here
it was big, and it was yummy!
The seaweed wraps
(which were filled with their Jambalaya rice, veggies,
tomato, and fried tofu) were not as delicious as
the sammitch, but were good too. XAkk said they
reminded him of "green egg rolls." The Jambalaya
rice was not as seasoned as we had expected, but
still good, and the surprise of corn inside gave
them a little more body. They came with a slightly
spicy dipping sauce that was kind of like a plum
sauce, but more chili pepper-y, and not as thick.
Most of the desserts
weren't vegan but sounded good (yogurt and fruit
parfait, ice cream and fruit medley), and we were
tempted by the plantain and pineapple with coconut
sprinkles, but we decided to try that next time.
Throughout the meal
our water glasses never got empty, and our waitress
answered our many questions about La Siringitu like
we were old friends. The only odd thing was the
music that she had on which started out funky
and soul-tinged, sort of Western/African fusion,
turned out to be very Jesus heavy. At one time the
singer (it was a recording of a live show) was talking
about how we were living in "the greatest time in
history" because the internet, technology, etc.,
give the opportunity to spread the gospel throughout
the world. This is totally not our style and was
mildly off-putting, but the food was so good that
we quickly forgot the Jesus-y music.
Aside from regular
old dining in, they also do a "heat and serve" menu,
where you can call in and place an order, then pick
up it later to take home and put in the oven. They
offer several mix and match options, with choices
of between three and five of their "signature dishes."
Another cool thing (which we forgot to check whether
they are vegan) is their seasonal pies at
the time they were offering sweet potato pie or
The building also
includes a space where they do chair massage, hand
massage, and even put in corn rows! They have community
events when they can, but not a regular schedule
yet. One of the owners sings and dances so often
puts on performances, and they are very into promoting
"community awareness" with events and in combination
with other organizations, groups.
We both made trips
to the restrooms before we left and found that even
they were lovely! The men's room was plain, but
nice, and clean, and the ladies room had beautiful
decorations, a selection of lotions to use and it
even smelled great!
On the way out we
mentioned to our waitress that we were thinking
of moving to the area and she said, "Welcome home!"
And with places like La Siringitu, we can see that
could be true!