El Pinto Blog

The Hen Hotel at El Pinto

El Pinto is the Only Animal Welfare Approved Restaurant in the Nation

with a Laying Hen program on restaurant property

See the Video: https://youtu.be/y3gpsNtK8ME

Read the Animal Welfare Approved Story

El Pinto Restaurant in Albuquerque New Mexico is now using 100% pasture-raised eggs for all entrees. To accomplish this unprecedented feat, El Pinto is caring for 200 laying hens to produce the required pasture-raised eggs on a daily basis for restaurant use. The restaurant’s “Hen Hotel” is located on the property of El Pinto in the North Valley of Albuquerque. This commitment makes El Pinto Restaurant one of the few, and the definitely the largest restaurant in America with a pasture-raised egg commitment.

“Our passion is clean and nutritious food for all of our guests,” explains Jim Thomas, co-owner of El Pinto. He continues, “Healthy happy hens produce eggs of amazing nutritional value and outstanding taste.”

There is extensive lack of understanding in egg production standards which confuses the consumer. “Pasture-raised” is the only standard that is significant to ensure nutritional benefits of the eggs as well as the animal security of the hens. Terms like “cage-free,” “farm-raised,” and even “free-range,” do not ensure the happiness of the hens or high nutritional value of the eggs.

The health benefits of pasture raised eggs are extensive. Eggs from happy hens who live their lives normally in an unconfined environment lay eggs that are multiple times higher in Vitamin A, Vitamin E and Omega-3s than eggs from mass production conventionally raised hens. Pasture-raised eggs naturally have half the cholesterol and are significantly lower in saturated fat as well.

El Pinto hens naturally roam the land for worms, grubs and insects. Their diet is supplemented with high protein organic feed. Additionally, some unique things like wheatgrass, red chile sprouts, jalapenos, and other nutritious kitchen scraps from the restaurant are used to supplement their natural diet. The eggs are collected daily, washed, graded according to USDA requirements, and then used in the restaurant for guest entrees.

It is estimated in 2016 that 94% of egg laying hens in the United States live their lives in less than 76 square inches of space in a cage. By comparison, a sheet of paper is 94 square inches. Cage-free hens live outside a cage but inside a cramped barn and likely do not see the light of day. There are no space requirements for cage-free laying hens. El Pinto laying hens live their lives under the pasture-raised standard which requires them to live naturally without their beaks cut, wings clipped, and they enjoy a happy life in over 50 square feet (not inches) of outdoor pasture space per hen. All hens have free will access to safe laying areas as well as expansive outdoor pasture space.

Over the 53 year tradition of El Pinto, the restaurant has helped to put New Mexican cuisine on the map as it has prepared green chile based cuisine within the White House presidential kitchen and provided “take-out” direct to Air Force One on the tarmac in Albuquerque. In addition to serving presidents, cabinet secretaries and military generals, local residents continue to independently voted El Pinto Restaurant the Best New Mexican Restaurant for multiple years running as well as its patios as the Best in the City in the annual Albuquerque The Magazine readers poll. El Pinto's Red Chile Ribs were named in Food Network's Top 5 Restaurants as the #3 ribs in the nation.

About El Pinto Restaurant & Salsa Co:
Established 53 years ago, El Pinto is a quintessential icon for New Mexican cuisine. Conveniently located in the North Valley of Albuquerque just off I-25, the serene patios located under beautiful cottonwood trees provide an iconic experience. El Pinto is known nationally for its fire-roasted green chile and fresh flavorful salsa distributed across the nation in local grocery stores. The salsa and green chile factory is located on the same grounds as the restaurant. For an authentic taste of New Mexico, visit El Pinto for its fresh iconic food, traditional margaritas, and award winning chile. www.elpinto.com

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Raw & Wild Pilot Episode

Raw & Wild Pilot Episode

by El Pinto Entertainment

 Watch RAW & WILD for FREE on VIMEO

Television Pilot, 24 minutes, 54 seconds, USA, 2017, Directed by James Capria, Created by James Capria, John & Jim Thomas, and Doug Evilsizor

Raw & Wild is authentic “Food Tourism.” Building on the movement for food tourism and for organic eating, we are adventuring across New Mexico and the Southwest discovering breathtaking locations while rediscovering indigenous foods which naturally grow on the land. Unlike other food tourism shows, this isn't about visiting restaurants but rather ancient places and individuals who know ancient techniques that can be reapplied in the modern world. Before food was modernized, mechanized, and genetically engineered, it came from an authentic place. We are going back to the origin of food, when food was sacred.

Raw & Wild transports you to a glory age where food was clean, found off the land, and it naturally nourished your body. Prepare to adventure across the beautiful landscape of New Mexico while rediscovering indigenous food and be inspired by ancient recipes that stretch 500-years into the past.

Watch RAW & WILD for FREE on VIMEO

 SeriesFest Logo

An Official Selection of SeriesFest in Denver, CO - Read about it in Indiewire

 

An Official Selection of the Albuquerque Film & Media Experience

 

For information on the format, broadcast, or vision for future episodes, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 

Dry Aging Process Tomahawk Ribeye

Dry Aging is rarely performed anymore but is the best way to naturally tenderize beef as well as concentrate the natural flavor. It is completely different process and much expensive than common wet aging. At El Pinto Restaurant we dry age all of our Tomahawk Ribeye Steaks for over 30 days. In this video owner, John Thomas, takes you behind the scene to see where we dry age our beef before we hand trim them into Tomahawk Ribeye Steaks.

Co-Packing, Hot Fill Manufacturing, Private Label Manufacturing

El Pinto Foods LLC offers hot-fill private label production for co-packing clients from our automated manufacturing facility on the property of iconic El Pinto Restaurant in the North Valley of Albuquerque New Mexico.

Automated for efficiency for small to mid sized companies • There are bigger co-packers out there that can do a lower price point, but can they do the volume you need? If you have a product in production and are ready to go to the next level, but cannot satisfy the minimums, El Pinto is the niche high quality manufacture you need.

SQF Certified • The factory follows SQF 2 certification requirements helping to document product safety, chain of ownership, and allowing your product to be sold in the largest retailers in the nation.

Organic Certified • Our corporate culture believes in nutricious and healthy products that nourish the body. Although not everything we manufacture is organic, we do seek partnerships with companies with a similar belief, and provide high quality products to consumers.

Nimble • With engineers on staff, and the ability to customize our production line to your needs, we are one of the most nimble companies you will find.

Loyal • El Pinto was established in 1962 and has grown into a unique family company with a 1,000 seat iconic restaurant, 20,000 sq foot manufacturing facility, organic green house, and an Animal Welfare Approved laying hen program for eggs, all located on the same 14 acre property in Albuquerque, NM. As a family run business, we maintain loyalty to all of our customers.

Efficient • With automation to create 25,000 jars of hot fill production in one shift, we can efficiently produce product for partners from 100,000 to a few million units annually. We have a secondary line for cup/tub product and mechanized support for food service large capacity bagged products.

Storage on Site • Raw Goods and Finished Goods Warehouses are on site with shipping daily across the nation.

If you are interested in talking with El Pinto Foods about your private label or co-packing needs, please complete this questionnaire and email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.