Prairie Star Restaurant Review
I'm not an expert or restaurant critic, but I do love to eat and I know good food, and Prairie Star Restaurant has got to be near the top of my choices and one of the best restaurants in Albuquerque. We got to enjoy a fantastic meal here as a part of weeklong vacation playing the golf courses and staying in the resorts that are associated with the Santa Fe Golf Trail - here is a link to an article about the trip, courses, and resorts. Prairie Star Restaurant is located on the Santa Ana Golf Course and just down the road from the Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort & Spa.
Prairie Star has all the ingredients that I look for in a restaurant - unique setting, outdoor patio with a view, outstanding wait staff, reasonable prices, cold beer, and fantastic food. Housed in an old adobe mansion that was built in the early 1920's, the warmth and intimacy of Prairie Star is intoxicating with handmade adobe walls, fireplaces and full viga and latilla ceilings, awe-inspiring and sweeping views of Santa Ana Golf Course and the Sandia Mountains.
The dining rooms and the fantastic outdoor patio offer dramatic views of the sun setting and painting the Sandia Mountains crimson! The Prairie Star is rich with history and rumored to house a couple ghosts that any of the wait staff will swear are real - be sure to inquire about the residing ghosts.
As you walk in and are warmly greeted by a very informative and friendly staff, you can't help but notice the wall full of Wine Spectacular Awards of Excellence. Prairie Star has won that award of excellence since 1994 as well as awards from the Santa Fe Northern New Mexico Branch of the International Wine and Food Society. If you like wine they have over 2000 bottles and 500 selections of spectacular wine from their wine bar. The cozy wine bar features a 32-handle Cruvinet which protects wines from "turning" by instantly replacing the oxygen in a freshly opened bottle with pure, odorless, tasteless high-grade argon gas, thereby arresting the oxidation process which is damaging to wine. Which means that Prairie Star can offer over 50 wines by the glass and half-glass.
If you come here, make sure to make it in time to enjoy a drink on the patio watching the spectacular sunset - and then move inside for a spectacular meal. The executive chef prepares stunning southwest inspired New American cuisine with global influences. Each dish is carefully crafted from the finest ingredients and constructed for unique flavor combinations as well as flair of presentation. The menu is changed seasonally to reflect the freshest ingredients available. When we were there some of the appetizers included: Beet Box (slow roasted beef with jalapeno shallot and fontina filling, balsamic reduction, truffle oil, and micro greens); Foie Gras & Caramelized Onion Tart; Smoked Chicken & Almond Lettuce Wraps; and Oven Roasted Blue. It was hard to choose which entree, some of which included: Blackened Atlantic Salmon, Foie Gras Stuffed & Smoked Quail, Pinon & Local Cheese Ravioli, Blue Cheese Crusted Chicken, and Grilled Bison Strip loin. And then there were desserts.
We loved the Lobster-Shrimp-Crab Relleno which was beer battered and included three cheese crisp cabbage slaw and curry aioli and the tender and thick crisp calamari rings with a horseradish tomato aioli for appetizers. The Niman Ranch Sirloin was cooked to perfection as was the Pinon Smoked Beef Tenderloin with a cracked pepper demi glaze and the Seared Jumbo Atlantic Scallops were delicious!
We waddled out of Prairie Star wondering when we could find a way to return to try some of the other entrees.