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Daily dose of coffee – and news: Get them at Duggan’s, where the menu features newsy phrases

Coffee and the morning paper at a local cafe is a thing of the past. It was already headed in that direction even two decades ago while the web was in its infancy, but the tradition seems worth a small revival as long as we have papers to crinkle and unfold and section out. (Coffee is comparatively less of a flight risk in coming decades.)

The sandwich called The Editor at Duggan’s Coffee has red chile pulled pork on a bun with coleslaw. (Jim Thompson/Albuquerque Journal)

The sandwich called The Editor at Duggan’s Coffee has red chile pulled pork on a bun with coleslaw. (Jim Thompson/Albuquerque Journal)

The nexus of words in print and a brain come alive by caffeine is why Duggan’s Coffee is perfect.

At its baseline level of service, Duggan’s offers locally roasted Fat Boy coffee beans augmented by a bevy of local newspapers, all set against a soundtrack of local gossip and friendly meet-ups, both planned and spontaneous.

Owner Kevin Scanlan oversees everything with a grin; he and his wife came back to New Mexico after decades away practicing architecture in California, ready for a little bit of a breather. T

hey renovated the space with bright colors and clean design; I have a feeling they wouldn’t have it any other way. Learn all this and more about the place by ignoring the free WiFi to have a chat while sipping a smooth Americano ($2.45 double).

Thumb through the papers, if you’d like, and then admire the menu themed around newsy phrases: Morning Edition, The Columnist, Metro, Classified.

The dozen food offerings all come from a tiny kitchen in back, so let’s start with the uncooked Spot News ($5.95), a parfait glass overflowing with layers of berry puree, yogurt and granola. Delicious with plenty of carbohydrates to rocket a person right through to … another cup of coffee ($2.70 for a bottomless cup).

If your breakfast preferences tilt towards the savory/protein side of the coin, the Op Ed breakfast burrito ($5.50, $6.50 with egg) is yet another rendition of a local staple, and a darn good one. One fat plank of bacon runs the length of this bundle of cheese, hash browns, egg and chile.

Diners staying put receive the bonus of a smothering with chile; the handheld to-go version is still a meal and a half in its own right.

Lunch-goers have several more options, like a chopped salad called The Journalist ($7.25), and regulars’ favorite The Editor ($7.50), a pulled pork barbecue sandwich with red chile and homemade coleslaw. Do the names imply anything about various news jobs, editors being hard-working and in need of some hearty meat, while journalists are the vegetable-eating health nuts?

Doubtful; everyone I’ve ever known in the news business works enough to earn everything on the menu and then some. Same goes for restaurant owners: stop in to Duggan’s and say hello to the neighborhood while you sip on a great cuppa.

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