66 Diner, Albuquerque, NM
1405 Central Ave NE
What they serve
Burgers, New Mexico favorites, sandwiches, and classic diner food.
Avg dinner $9-12.
Nostalgic – 66 Diner is housed in a former filling station on Route 66, and packed with eye-candy ’50s and ’60s style. A massive Pez dispenser collection lines the ceiling. Neon, vintage signs, and automotive memorabilia line the walls. A jukebox, soda fountain, and bright vinyl booths round out the sensory experience.
Comfort – The food is quintessential mid-century comfort – not a kale leaf in sight. The atmosphere of the restaurant and everything Route 66 represents gives people a fantasy peek back to a simpler time.
Sweet – The 66 Diner claims to make the best shakes in New Mexico – possibly the world. You will have to try one to decide for yourself, but we think its a fair boast. Also on the dessert menu – malts, floats, ice cream sodas, sundaes, banana splits, and house-made pies.
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Favorites and specialties
Daily Blue Plate Specials.
Other interesting tidbits
Search for all the U.S. Presidents immortalized as Pez dispensers.
Don’t miss the wall of vintage signs outside (as if you could); it’s supremely photogenic!
In the area, you will also find Kimo Theater, Maisel’s Trading Post, El Don Motel, The Pig Stand, Kelly’s Brew Pub, The Dog House, El Vado Auto Court Motel, and Nob Hill Shopping Center – all icons of Route 66. The 66 Diner has a helpful page on their blog describing each location.
How we found it
We almost passed this up as too touristy. Our dinner plans for the night fell through, and we were in the neighborhood.
I’m glad we went. Yes, it is kitschy, but that’s the point. And the food is delicious!