Rude Boy Cookies opened last month at 115 Harvard SE, creating a whole new world of sweet snacking possibilities.
Sit down at the University of New Mexico-area bake store to a fresh double-chocolate cookie and a glass of just-mixed raspberry milk. Pair a peanut butter cookie and caramel-cappuccino milk.
Or … just get weird.
“We had somebody the other day order a mint-raspberry milk,” says Rude Boy co-owner Michael Silva. “I wouldn’t do it, but whatever works for you.”
Rude Boy sprung from Silva’s deep-seated love of cookies. Albuquerque has several shops devoted to doughnuts, ice cream and even cupcakes. He wanted to give cookie enthusiasts the same option.
Silva – also co-owner of ABQ Trolley Co. – mulled the idea for about eight years. He began getting more serious about a year ago, working with partners Eli Quinn and Kristin Dowling to further develop the idea.
Dowling – who earned a CNM culinary degree with an emphasis in baking and advanced pastries – handles the cookie recipes and says she has “over 100″ different ideas.
“My life for, like, the last year has been nothing but cookies and bars,” she says.
Rude Boy’s core cookie menu includes the so-called “classics” like chocolate chip and peanut butter.
But with a goal to offer about 15 choices daily, there’s room for experimentation and specials. The summer season has inspired a s’mores cookie, while the current monthlong special is a salted-caramel shortbread.
Cookies run $1.75-$2.50. Bars – think brownies or Dowling’s special apple-pie bar – run $3.
Rude Boy also offers ice cream by the scoop or for custom ice-cream sandwiches (choose your cookies!) and milkshakes.
The shop’s most distinctive asset, however, has to be its milk bar. Whole and chocolate milk flow from taps, though other varieties (skim, soy, almond and more) also are available.
Enjoy a plain glass or let employees work their bar magic – think cocktail shaker and jigger – to incorporate various syrups. Created by Joliesse, a local chocolatier, there currently are eight different flavors, such as vanilla, banana, peanut butter and mint.
Silva says his research indicates there’s nothing quite like Rude Boy in the country today, and it’s a concept he hopes he can one day expand outside New Mexico.
But for now, Silva is concentrating not only on satisfying the cravings of the nearby college crowd, but also families and anyone looking for a different dessert destination, especially at night. Rude Boy – already open until midnight Thursday-Saturday – will carve out a walk-up window so it soon can serve until 2 a.m. those nights.
“We want to be a new late-night option,” says Silva, who picked the Rude Boy name and theme as a nod to his love of ska music.
Customers can enjoy their cookies at tables, lounge seating or from a few bar stools inside the 1,200-square-foot shop. Silva says Rude Boy also delivers.
Rude Boy’s current hours are 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, and 10 a.m.-midnight Thursday-Saturday. It’s located on Harvard, just south of Central. The phone number is 200-2235.
This is for the birds
Bird lovers Jim and Linda Murray have found a new calling.
Now retired – he as a machinist, she from the insurance industry – the Albuquerque duo have developed their own bird seed blends, and they recently opened a Northeast Heights retail store to hawk their feed and related merchandise.
Their Wild Bird Seed Trading Co. opened last month at the Montgomery/Tramway intersection. The 1,300-square-foot store stocks a selection of seed – including the Murrays’ own “Sandia Mountain Blend” and “Enchantment No Mess Blend” – plus feeders, bird baths and more. (They don’t, however, sell actual birds.)
Birds have captivated the Murrays since they moved here from the Dallas/Fort Worth area about eight years ago, Jim Murray says.
“My wife kept saying, ‘When we retire, let’s open a bird store,’ so that’s what we did,” Jim says. “We’re bird enthusiasts. You learn something new every day.”
Their Sandia Mountain feed incorporates sunflower seeds, safflower, white millet and sunflower chips. A 20-pound bag currently sells for $20. The Enchantment “no-mess” blend includes a few other ingredients but has no shells. It’s $35 for a 20-pound bag. A New Mexico mill produces both to the Murrays’ specifications.
The new store also sells seven feed blends out of bulk bins, Murray says.
Wild Bird Seed Trading Co. is open 10 a.m.-6 p.m. weekdays, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday.
It’s located at 12611 Montgomery NE, in the Glenwood Village Shopping Center. The phone number is 503-8568.
Try a little tenders-ness
What’s in a name?
Well, at All-American Sliders & Tenders, pretty much everything. That is to say, the name of the new Northeast Heights restaurant pretty well sums up the menu. It is comprised mostly of sliders and chicken tenders, plus some basket-worthy sidekicks like shoestring fries, onion rings and homemade chips.
“It’s a really fresh, simple menu,” says Casey Hazelwood, vice president of operations.
All-American’s sliders come on a grilled brioche bun with either hamburger, barbecue beef, grilled or hand-breaded chicken. They start at $1.99 apiece.
Slider combos and chicken tender baskets – each with a side and drink – run $5-$10.
Customers can wash it all down with a homemade milkshake ($4.79) or cap their meal with a sundae ($2.99).
All-American – which opened last month at Juan Tabo Plaza – represents the newest venture from Weck’s owner Art Kaplan, though the two concepts bear little resemblance.
All-American is more of a fast-food restaurant, Hazelwood says, with lunch and dinner and a counter ordering process.
“This is totally different – totally different,” he says, adding that the company eventually wants to add more locations.
All-American is located at 11004 Montgomery NE, at the intersection of Juan Tabo. It’s open 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Sunday-Thursday and 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Friday and Saturday. The phone number is 888-7002.
In case you missed it …
As I recently reported on my blog, Hispaniae will close this month after more than 20 years selling Mexican and New Mexican folk art in Old Town Albuquerque.
The shop was founded in 1992 by Bonnie Overmyer, who died last summer after a brief battle with cancer.
Her sister Becky Weaver took the reins, but Weaver says that while the store had done well for its first 15 years, the last several had been a struggle. She says maintaining the store “in this economy … really wasn’t in our best interest.”
Hispaniae is located at 410 Romero NW.
“It had a great run and now I think it’s time to just let it go,” Weaver says.
If you have retail news to share, contact me at email@example.com or 823-3864. For more regular updates on Albuquerque shopping and restaurant news, visit my blog at abqjournal.com or follow @abqdyer on Twitter.