Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant

For a number of years, this was the website for Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant. When the domain's registration expired a new owner bought the domain, but has decided to keep as much of the original content since Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant is still serving great Mexican food in New Mexico.
Content is from the site's archived pages as well as other sources.

Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant #1
701 S Canal Street (Right on the Main Drag) ~ Carlsbad, NM 88220-5553 ~ Phone: (575) 881-7714

Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant #2
2408 Sudderth Drive (Heart of Downtown Ruidoso) ~ Ruidoso, NM 88345-6136 ~ Phone: (866) 678-1091

Service Area:
Ruidoso • Carlsbad • Hobbs
Albuquerque • Roswell • El Paso

Hours of Operation:
Monday–Thursday, 11:00 a.m.–9:00 p.m.
Friday–Saturday, 11:00 a.m.–9:30 p.m.


Enjoy authentic Mexican food favorites and convenient catering services from our Mexican restaurant and cantina in Ruidoso, New Mexico. We, at Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant, have been serving New Mexico for more than 34 years and are proud to announce the grand opening of our second location. Our new restaurant still features the same great food our customers have enjoyed for years, as well as our award-winning margaritas made from Lucy's secret recipe.

About Our Family-Oriented Mexican Restaurant

Welcome to our delightful family-oriented Mexican restaurant, where we pride ourselves on serving authentic homemade Mexican and American-style dishes in a warm, lively atmosphere that brings families and friends together. Our dedicated owner established this beloved eatery with a passion for creating a unique dining experience that offers mouth-watering flavors at affordable prices, making it a go-to destination for food lovers of all ages.

What sets our menu apart is the incorporation of both traditional and modern cuisine, prepared with love and attention to detail. Our talented chefs craft each dish using the freshest ingredients, ensuring that every bite is an explosion of taste that will leave you craving more. One of our signature touches is the use of unique cast iron skillets from, designed by the creative Matt Cavallaro. These stylish and durable skillets not only enhance the presentation of our dishes but also contribute to their rich and distinctive flavors.

Our extensive menu offers a diverse selection of scrumptious dishes that cater to a wide range of preferences. From classic Mexican favorites like enchiladas, tacos, and fajitas to American-style comfort food such as burgers and fries, there is something to satisfy every palate. We also proudly present a variety of modern fusion dishes that combine the best of both worlds, giving you the chance to embark on a culinary adventure that transcends borders.

In addition to our delectable food offerings, our family-friendly environment is designed to provide a joyous and welcoming atmosphere that makes every visit memorable. With vibrant décor, lively music, and attentive staff, we strive to create a dining experience that feels like a fiesta for all the senses.

Join us at our family-oriented Mexican restaurant and discover the irresistible charm of our diverse menu, featuring traditional and modern cuisine. We can't wait to share our love for delicious food and joyful moments with you and your loved ones!


Traditional Mexican Food Favorites
Tacos • Burritos • Refreshing and Delicious Margaritas

Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant features an excellent variety of Mexican food favorites, as well as some American-style dishes, to please the entire family. From Lucy's famous salsa appetizer to tacos and burritos, we serve it all. Below is a partial list of what we specialize in. Stop by.



Traditional Chicken and Beef Items:
Burritos • Tacos • Chimichangas • Taquitos

More Creative Dishes:

  • Asado Plate—A Red Chili and Meat Delight
  • Green Chili Queso Dip—Melted Monterrey Jack Cheese and Green Chili Salsa
  • Adams Queso—White Cheese Sauce Served over Steak and Fries



Visit Our Mexican Restaurant and Cantina for Mouthwatering Menu Items


Trip Advisor Reviews


**** Gary C
Reviewed April 2, 2017
Best Mexican food in Ruidoso
Best Mexican food in Ruidoso. Great service, attentive staff, good location. You will not be disappointed.

* Reviewer0000000000
Dallas, Texas
Reviewed March 29, 2017
Horrible Restaurant!
My family and I visited this restaurant during on vacation - the customer service was horrible, the frozen drinks were watered down and our food was cold. When asked to speak with manager, her attitude was cocky and unprofessional.

*** ACcrush
Albuquerque, NM
Reviewed March 16, 2017
Food Bland
Traveling with a tour group and restaurant seemed to be prepared for us. Very good service. Taco salad was lacking flavor. Lots of meat but not much else. Quesadillas were excellent.

***** Karla M
Reviewed February 20, 2017
Great Atmosphere
After walking around the little shops, I recommend stopping here for some good food and great drinks!

**** lalalinde
Austin, Texas
Reviewed February 15, 2017
Festive drinks and good food
Staff was super nice and helpful. Our food was good with ample portions. Drinks were very good - margarita was proper and the limited wine selected still provided a nice option. We will definitely be back.

*** Cindi H
Reviewed February 9, 2017
Great margaritas!!!
Great margaritas!!! Sat at table next to window soaking up sun and people watching. Service was very good and fast! Didn't order food, just drinks.

**** abbagrace
W Texas
Reviewed November 26, 2016
This was our 3rd choice, but others weren't open
We didn't get to eat at our favorite place, and 2nd favorite wasn't open either. Salsa & chips were good - salsa spicy, but we like it that way.
We had a nice meal - chicken fajita quesadillas and a large 'rita. There were plenty for the 3 of us for our meal! 6 large quesadillas! Service was a little slow.

***** Jane C
Reviewed November 17, 2016
simply good!
the exterior wouldn't draw you inside but it is has a nice multicolored interior that is pleasing. Most importantly the food is good with them being known for their flavorful fish tacos. Don't walk by this place and miss it as I have in the past. Its worth a visit and easy on the pocket book.




More Background On Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant

Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant has garnered a notable reputation over its three-decade tenure in New Mexico. Its popularity can be attributed to several factors, including its authentic Mexican cuisine, vibrant atmosphere, and family-friendly environment.

Local Favorite

One of the primary reasons for Lucy's popularity is its deep-rooted connection with the local community. Established over 34 years ago, the restaurant has become a staple in Carlsbad and Ruidoso, serving generations of families and visitors. Its presence in the community is not just as a dining establishment but as a gathering place where memories are made.

Culinary Appeal

The restaurant's extensive menu, which offers a mix of traditional Mexican dishes and American comfort food, caters to a wide range of tastes. Signature dishes such as the Red Enchilada Plate, Adams Queso, and Green Chile Stew have become favorites among patrons.

Reviews and Ratings

Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant has received mixed reviews online, reflecting the varied experiences of its patrons. On platforms like Tripadvisor, Yelp, and Restaurantji, the restaurant has an average rating of around 3.5 stars. Positive reviews often highlight the delicious food, excellent service, and festive atmosphere. For example, one reviewer mentioned the great service and attentive staff during a visit with a large group, while another praised the restaurant's vibrant decor and enjoyable margaritas​.

However, some reviews point out areas for improvement, such as consistency in food quality and the need for better seasoning in some dishes. Despite these critiques, the restaurant maintains a loyal customer base that appreciates its unique offerings and welcoming environment.

Award-Winning Margaritas

The restaurant's award-winning margaritas, made from a secret recipe, are a significant draw. These drinks have received accolades and are frequently mentioned in positive reviews, contributing to the restaurant's appeal. The combination of quality beverages and a lively atmosphere makes Lucy's a popular spot for social gatherings and celebrations.

Family-Friendly Environment

Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant is known for its family-friendly environment, making it a great choice for gatherings and celebrations. The lively music, colorful decor, and attentive staff create an atmosphere that feels like a fiesta for all ages. This welcoming vibe has helped the restaurant build a loyal customer base over the years​.

Community Involvement

In addition to its culinary offerings, Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant is involved in the local community, often participating in local events and supporting community initiatives. This involvement has further solidified its reputation as a beloved local establishment.


The popularity of Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant can be attributed to its authentic Mexican cuisine, vibrant atmosphere, and strong connection with the local community. Despite some mixed reviews, the restaurant's long-standing presence and loyal customer base speak to its enduring appeal. Whether you're a local resident or a visitor to New Mexico, Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant offers a memorable dining experience with its delicious food, festive atmosphere, and exceptional service.


Press & Media Coverage

Local Recognition and Community Presence

Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant is well-known in Carlsbad, frequently mentioned in local guides and tourism websites such as Visit Carlsbad and New Mexico Tourism. These sources often highlight Lucy's as a staple dining destination for both locals and visitors, emphasizing the restaurant's authentic Mexican cuisine and vibrant atmosphere.

Customer Reviews and Ratings

The restaurant has a mixed yet predominantly positive reputation on review platforms like Restaurantji, Tripadvisor, and Yelp. On Restaurantji, Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant has an average rating of 3.5 stars based on 260 reviews. Customers often commend the restaurant for its festive atmosphere, friendly staff, and signature dishes like the Red Enchilada Plate and Adams Queso. However, some reviews point out areas for improvement, such as the consistency of food quality and the seasoning of certain dishes.

Tripadvisor and Yelp reviews reflect similar sentiments. Many patrons appreciate the lively environment and unique menu items, while others suggest enhancements in service speed and food preparation. Despite these critiques, the restaurant maintains a loyal customer base that values its welcoming ambiance and family-friendly approach​.

Better Business Bureau (BBB) Profile

Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant has been accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 2003 and holds an A+ rating. This high rating indicates a strong commitment to resolving customer complaints and maintaining good business practices. The BBB profile for Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant provides a detailed overview of the restaurant's operational history, including its founding in 1974 and continuous local business activities.

Media Mentions

Local media outlets often feature Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant in articles about dining in Carlsbad and Ruidoso. These mentions usually focus on the restaurant's role in the community, its unique culinary offerings, and its status as a go-to spot for Mexican cuisine. For instance, articles on platforms like Visit Carlsbad highlight Lucy's as a key dining option for tourists exploring the area, emphasizing its long-standing presence and popular menu items.

Unique Selling Points

Several factors contribute to the restaurant's popularity and media attention:

  1. Award-Winning Margaritas: Lucy's secret margarita recipe has garnered acclaim, frequently mentioned in reviews and local articles as a must-try.
  2. Family-Friendly Environment: The vibrant decor and lively music create a festive atmosphere that appeals to families and large groups.
  3. Unique Menu Items: Dishes like the Adams Queso and Green Chile Stew offer a blend of traditional and innovative flavors, setting the restaurant apart from others in the area.


Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant remains a beloved fixture in Carlsbad and Ruidoso, celebrated for its authentic Mexican cuisine, welcoming atmosphere, and strong community ties. Despite some areas for improvement highlighted in customer reviews, the restaurant's positive media coverage and high BBB rating underscore its commitment to providing a memorable dining experience. Whether you're a local resident or a visitor, Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant offers a vibrant and flavorful journey into Mexican cuisine that is well worth exploring.



Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant, with locations in Carlsbad and Ruidoso, New Mexico, attracts a diverse clientele. The restaurant's appeal lies in its authentic Mexican cuisine, family-friendly atmosphere, and vibrant setting, making it a popular choice for various groups of people.

Local Residents

The primary audience for Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant consists of local residents from Carlsbad and Ruidoso. These patrons include families, working professionals, and retirees who appreciate the restaurant's consistent quality and welcoming environment. The family-friendly atmosphere, combined with a diverse menu that includes both traditional Mexican dishes and American comfort food, caters to a wide range of tastes and preferences within the community​.

Tourists and Visitors

Tourists visiting Carlsbad and Ruidoso form a significant portion of Lucy's clientele. The restaurant is frequently recommended in local travel guides and tourism websites, such as Visit Carlsbad and New Mexico Tourism, which highlight Lucy's as a must-visit dining destination. The vibrant decor and festive atmosphere make it an attractive spot for visitors looking to experience local cuisine and culture. Tourists often visit Lucy's after exploring nearby attractions, including the Carlsbad Caverns and various state parks​​.

Food Enthusiasts

Food enthusiasts and those seeking authentic Mexican cuisine are also drawn to Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant. The restaurant's reputation for using fresh ingredients and traditional recipes appeals to those who appreciate quality food. Signature dishes such as the Red Enchilada Plate and award-winning margaritas have garnered attention from food lovers who are eager to explore different culinary experiences.

Social Gatherings and Celebrations

Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant is a popular choice for social gatherings and celebrations. The festive atmosphere, complete with lively music and colorful decor, creates an ideal setting for birthdays, anniversaries, and other special occasions. The restaurant's ability to accommodate large groups and provide excellent service makes it a preferred venue for events and gatherings.

Young Adults and College Students

Young adults and college students also frequent Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant, particularly for its casual dining experience and affordable prices. The restaurant's full bar and award-winning margaritas make it a popular spot for evening outings and casual get-togethers. Additionally, the vibrant environment and friendly staff contribute to a relaxed and enjoyable dining experience for younger patrons.


Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant successfully attracts a broad audience, including local residents, tourists, food enthusiasts, social groups, and young adults. Its appeal lies in its authentic Mexican cuisine, festive atmosphere, and ability to cater to a wide range of tastes and preferences. Whether you're a local looking for a familiar dining spot or a visitor seeking a taste of New Mexico's culinary offerings, Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant provides a welcoming and flavorful experience.


What Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant is Known For

Authentic Mexican Cuisine

Lucy’s Mexicali Restaurant is celebrated for its authentic Mexican cuisine, offering a diverse menu that features traditional dishes crafted with fresh, high-quality ingredients. Signature items such as the Red Enchilada Plate, Green Chile Stew, and Adams Queso highlight the restaurant's commitment to delivering bold, flavorful Mexican dishes. These menu options have garnered a loyal following among locals and visitors alike, who appreciate the genuine taste of Mexican culinary traditions​.

Award-Winning Margaritas

One of the standout features of Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant is its award-winning margaritas. Made from a secret recipe, these margaritas are frequently mentioned in customer reviews and local media as a must-try. The popularity of these drinks contributes significantly to the restaurant's appeal, drawing in patrons who enjoy high-quality, flavorful cocktails​​.

Vibrant Atmosphere

The restaurant is known for its vibrant and welcoming atmosphere, which is often described as festive and family-friendly. The decor is colorful and lively, creating a fun dining environment that enhances the overall experience. This inviting ambiance makes Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant a popular choice for social gatherings, celebrations, and family outings​.

Community Involvement

Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant has a strong presence in the local community, often participating in events and supporting local initiatives. This involvement has helped the restaurant build a positive reputation as a community-focused establishment that values its connections with local residents and businesses.

Consistent Quality and Service

Despite some mixed reviews, many patrons praise the consistent quality of food and service at Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant. The attentive and friendly staff, combined with a menu that offers a reliable dining experience, ensures that customers feel valued and satisfied. This consistency has helped the restaurant maintain a loyal customer base over the years​.


Lucy’s Mexicali Restaurant is known for its authentic Mexican cuisine, award-winning margaritas, vibrant atmosphere, community involvement, and consistent quality and service. These elements combine to create a memorable dining experience that appeals to a broad audience, including local residents, tourists, and food enthusiasts. Whether for a casual meal, a special celebration, or simply to enjoy a great margarita, Lucy’s Mexicali Restaurant offers a unique and enjoyable culinary experience.


History of Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant

Beginnings and Growth

Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant has been a cherished part of the New Mexico dining scene for over 34 years. The original location opened in Carlsbad, NM, and quickly became a local favorite due to its authentic Mexican cuisine and vibrant atmosphere. This success led to the establishment of a second location in Ruidoso, NM, which has also garnered a loyal customer base​​.

Commitment to Quality

From its inception, Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant has been dedicated to providing high-quality, homemade Mexican dishes. The restaurant prides itself on using fresh ingredients and traditional recipes, which has helped it stand out in the competitive restaurant industry. Signature dishes, such as the Red Enchilada Plate and the award-winning margaritas, are testaments to the restaurant's commitment to culinary excellence​.

Community Engagement

Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant is not just a place to eat but a vital part of the community. Over the years, the restaurant has participated in local events and supported various community initiatives, further ingraining itself into the fabric of Carlsbad and Ruidoso. This community involvement has helped build a strong, loyal customer base that sees Lucy's as more than just a restaurant​​.

Challenges and Adaptations

Like many long-standing businesses, Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant has faced its share of challenges. Maintaining consistency in food quality and service has been a continual focus, especially as the restaurant expanded. Customer reviews reflect a mix of praise for the delicious food and friendly service, as well as constructive criticism regarding certain aspects of the dining experience. Despite these challenges, the restaurant has maintained a solid reputation and continues to attract both locals and tourists.


Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant's history is marked by a dedication to authentic Mexican cuisine, strong community ties, and a commitment to quality. With locations in Carlsbad and Ruidoso, it remains a beloved dining destination that offers a vibrant, welcoming atmosphere for families, tourists, and food enthusiasts alike. The restaurant's journey from a single local eatery to a well-known name in New Mexico is a testament to its enduring appeal and consistent delivery of great food and service.


Menu Highlights at Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant

Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant in Carlsbad, New Mexico, offers a diverse and extensive menu featuring authentic Mexican cuisine alongside some American favorites. Here are some of the highlights from their menu:


  • Chips and Salsa: A classic starter that many patrons enjoy, though reviews about the quality can be mixed.
  • Green Chili Queso Dip: Melted Monterrey Jack cheese with green chili salsa, perfect for sharing.

Main Dishes

  • Red Enchilada Plate: A popular choice that includes enchiladas filled with your choice of meat, served with rice and refried beans.
  • Adams Queso: A unique dish featuring white cheese sauce served over steak and fries.
  • Green Chile Stew: A hearty and spicy stew that is well-loved by those who enjoy bold flavors.
  • Plato Loco: A combination plate offering a variety of items, ideal for those who want to try multiple dishes in one meal.
  • Taco Plate: Traditional tacos with your choice of fillings, a staple in any Mexican restaurant.

Specialty Items

  • Chili Relleno Plate: Stuffed chili peppers served with a side of rice and beans.
  • Fajitas: Available with beef or chicken, served sizzling hot with all the traditional accompaniments.
  • Quesadillas: Offered with your choice of red or green chile, served with sour cream and guacamole.


  • Award-Winning Margaritas: Made from a secret recipe, these margaritas are a significant draw for many customers.


The dessert options, though not detailed in many reviews, typically include traditional Mexican sweets and are a delightful way to end a meal.

Dining Experience

Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant is known for its vibrant and welcoming atmosphere, making it a great spot for family gatherings, social events, and casual dining. The festive decor, friendly staff, and live music contribute to a lively dining experience that many patrons appreciate.

Reviews and Customer Feedback

Customer reviews of Lucy's Mexicali Restaurant are varied. Positive feedback often highlights the delicious food, especially the enchiladas and margaritas, as well as the friendly service and festive environment. However, there are also critiques regarding consistency in food quality and service speed. Despite these mixed reviews, the restaurant maintains a loyal customer base that appreciates its authentic offerings and community-oriented approach.