Restaurants & Bars

Adam's American Burger - new Albuquerque fast food report

Erich | Jan 15, 200310:09 AM     4

Last night we tried the newly opened Adam's American Burger on Eubank just S of I-40, and we were pretty darn happy with the experience. Even though it's a little bit of a drive from our house, my wife and I have decided that we're going to Adam's any time we feel a hankering for fast food.

Adam's was clearly enjoying a good opening day: it was hard to find parking, even though we arrived at 7:00 p.m. (after our arduous trek from work in SF). It's a fast food place, but the quality is a whole lot better than the McDonalds/Burger King type places. They make the shakes with real ice cream, the fries with real potatoes, the rings with real onions, the char-broiled burgers with real meat . . . and they have good chile! The red chile on the chile dogs/fries/whatever is equal to that found at the Dog House, and the green chile isn't that chopped and processed stuff! This is the best chile I've ever found on a fast food product.

Adam's has a limited menu (along the lines of In'n'Out): burgers (one-third lb and a smaller one), hot dogs (reg & foot-long), fries, shakes (S, Choc, V), onion rings, and sodas. They had three different combo meals (Red, White, Blue) that came in three different sizes each and offered a decent reduction on the price. At a time when McD and BK are price-warring, Adam's does not appear to be concentrating so much on "cheap" as much as on quality and service speed. It's still solidly in the "fast food" price range, though: the most expensive combo meal (1/3 lb burger, large fries, large drink) was $4.99 (and the other combo meals ranged downward from there), and we felt Adam's was a real value given the high quality of the product.

The 1/3 lb burgers come with onion, lettuce (whole leaf, not chopped) and tomato, and they have a decent number of extras one can add on: cheese, chiles (red and green - oh, that chile), double meat, etc. The burgers are char-broiled, which we found to be a nice change from most fast food places. The thick burgers looked handmade, were well-done but juicy, and flavorful - totally lacking that "gassy" flavor that I find characterizes Burger King flamed burgers. Frankly, they tasted like burgers you'd make yourself on the grill at home.

The buns were better than buns I buy for my homemade burgers, though, and the bun for the foot-long chile cheese dog I had (I was a total pig last night, but I was really hungry) reminded me of the good hot dog buns of the summers of my youth in the Northeast (like on a proper lobster roll).

As mentioned, the chile was really excellent. The green chile was not the chopped, processed stuff (somehow the processing takes away the taste - chile fanatics will back me up on this), but whole, roasty and yummy. The red was spicy and thick, and appeared to have been made with pods as opposed to powder. The thickness of the red was sort of odd at first (NM red chile tends to be waterier than this) but when I realized the way it was staying on the hot dog (instead of migrating to my tie), I got the point. The green was noticeably spicy for what you'd expect to find on a burger, the red more so - but neither was what I would call overly "hot." (Of course, I no longer find the Dog House chile dogs or Golden Pride carne adovada burritos to be hot . . . and I certainly did when I first moved to NM. So, this stuff may be plenty hot to others.)

The shakes (it seemed like they were making them with actual ice cream) were almost too thick to drink through the straw . . . but not quite. It was the perfect fast food shake, and the price ($1.39 sm, $1.89 lg) was very reasonable. The drinks were serve-yourself and free refills. And the employees were friendly and actually seemed happy to be there and to want to help. It was a great fast food experience, and we'll be back.

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