You can easily visit Moriarty – sizable town and outer bedroom suburb of Albuquerque – by simply following Interstate 40 from Santa Rosa. However, coming from Santa Fe, you'll have to backtrack south along Interstate 25 and U.S. Highway 285 before meeting with I-40 and Route 66.
Whichever route you take, you'll notice pinto beans loom large in this town – Moriarty hosts the Pinto Bean Fiesta every October, crowning a "Pinto Bean Queen." Pinto beans often factor into barbecue, too, and a good local stop is Shorty’s Bar-Be-Cue. While not an original Route 66 place – it opened in 1993 – its popularity with the locals cannot be denied.
For some old school, try the El Comedor Restaurant. Opened in 1950, it's good for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Chile rellenos and sopapillas are good options – though maybe not for breakfast.
After exiting Moriarty, Route 66 traverses the Sandia Mountains, which separate Albuquerque from eastern New Mexico. Both Route 66 and I-40 snake through via the Tijeras Canyon. Expect to have radio stations fade in and out but the spectacular views to be well worth on your way into the big city.
Best Western Moriarty Heritage Inn
111 Anaya Blvd.
Moriarty, NM 87035-2295