Berkeley, Calif., is a culinary wonderland with roots in local/sustainable/organic dining.
You can't talk about Berkeley without mentioning Chez Panisse and its famous chef owner, Alice Waters. Credited with starting the locavore movement in the 1970s, Chez Panisse and Waters are as relevant as ever today. Head downstairs for fine dining and upstairs for the more casual café. Either way, you won't be disappointed.
The iconic Gather offers farm-to-table cuisine for the omnivore. Working directly with farmers and ranchers, Gather utilizes rare heirloom varietals and foraged ingredients, and sources whole animals (with a focus on heritage breeds) that are butchered in house.
Another institution in Berkeley is the Cheese Board Collective, which opened as a small cheese store in 1967. In 1971, the original owners sold the business to their employees, and it's still 100% worker owned. The concept has grown to house a bakery, espresso counter, about 400 cheeses for sale and a pizzeria.
This building that once a produce depot in Berkley. Calif., has housed a delicatessen since the 1950s -- first the Pantry Shelf, then Rosenthal's and finally Saul's Restaurant & Delicatessen. Established in 1986, Saul's serves classic Jewish deli fare (like pastrami, pictured here), and cares about sourcing and seasonality -- it is in the Bay Area after all.
Gaumenkitzel is a modern interpretation of German cuisine that spans various regions. Enjoy the Bavarian-style pretzels, Nuremberg-style sausages and Swabian spatzle alongside an extensive collection of German beers on tap in Berkeley, Calif.
La Note serves Provençal bistro fare for breakfast, lunch and dinner with dishes like bagnat (open-faced sandwiches), bouillabaisse and steak frites in downtown Berkeley.
Family-owned Pho Van serves a delicious bowl of pho, as well as other Vietnamese noodle soups and entrees in Beaverton, Ore.
Beaverton's cheekily named Pho King Good (say it out loud) offers Vietnamese soups, pho, rice vermicelli entrees and rice dishes topped with beef, pork, chicken or seafood.
Beaverton trattoria MiNGO sources local produce for its wholesome Italian fare.
At Decarli Restaurant in downtown Beaverton, chef Paul Decarli pairs seasonal Oregon ingredients with his Swiss-Italian-American roots for creative pizzas, pastas, meat and seafood.
A popular Korean restaurant in the Portland, Ore., area, Nak Won serves up dishes like bibimbap, haemul pajeon seafood pancake and kimchi stew, in Beaverton. Traditional banchan, or side dishes (pictured), are served with every meal.
Rafic's Falafel was originally founded in Lebanon, and when Rafic and his family moved to Dearborn, Mich., they were encouraged to reopen. Today, Rafic's Falafel is run by Rafic's sons and is of course known for falafel (shown here) as well as crispy chicken tenders, sujouk made shawarma style and mixed shawarma platters.
Yemeni food can be hard to find in the U.S., and Sheeba Restaurant in Dearborn, Mich., is an excellent option. Traditional dishes like seltah (vegetables with fenugreek) and fahsah (shredded lamb and potato stew), and foul (a fava bean chili, pictured) are served. Scoop it all up with handmade tannour flatbread.
Dearborn's 25-year-old Al Ameer Restaurant made headlines when it won the James Beard Foundation's 2016 America's Classics Award for its stellar Lebanese fare. The family-owned spot (which has spawned two other Detroit-area locations) serves dishes like stuffed lamb, moujadara (rice and lentils with fried onions), and of course, creamy hummus.
Not every restaurant in Dearborn, Mich., serves Middle Eastern food. The beloved dive Miller's Bar has been around since 1941 and is known for its ground round on a bun (with or without cheese).
New Yasmeen is a bakery, deli, juice bar and grocery store in Dearborn, Mich. Customers can get delicacies like cheese bread, spinach and meat pies, fried kibbeh, shawarma, pastries and bread. Try something new such as kaak asri, or Lebanese purse-shaped bread.
Qahwah House opened in 2017 in Dearborn, Mich, bringing some of the world's best coffee to the U.S. While Yemen grows high-quality coffee, it is difficult to import here, so owner Ibrahim Alhasbani sources directly from his family in the Arab country. The beans from organic farms are roasted in house, and the coffee is served in the traditional Yemeni style -- though he'll make you a cappuccino if you insist.
John Rivers opened his first 4 Rivers Smokehouse in 2009 in Winter Park, Fla. The health care industry veteran's barbecue spot has expanded to 13 locations in Florida and one in Atlanta. Smokehouse Brisket is just one of many specialties.
Italian restaurant Prato helped put Winter Park, Fla., on the map as a culinary destination. The offerings range from cheese and house-cured meats to heartier fare like duck, lamb and short rib.
A Southern spot from James Beard Award-nominated chefs James and Julie Petrakis, The Ravenous Pig is popular for dishes like pimento cheese on pretzel bread, shrimp and grits, and chicken and waffles, in Winter Park, Fla.
On Winter Park, Fla.'s Park Avenue, LUMA on Park serves sources from local farms for salads and starters. Main dishes span seafood, poultry and steak from Diver scallops to N.Y. strip steak.
Bulla Gastrobar showcases Spanish-style tapas and cocktails in Winter Park, Fla. Cheese and charcuterie are imported from Spain and authentic fare like paella and Iberian pork tenderloin follow.
A husband-and-wife chef and sommelier team, Linton and Gina Hopkins run several restaurants in and around Atlanta, including a few in Buckhead. Holeman and Finch Public House is the couple's casual pub serving Southern fare, like this take on a Croque Madame called the Crunchy Lady, and solid cocktails. The restaurant's executive chef Spencer Gomez was named one of Star Chef's 2018 Atlanta Rising Stars.
Cape Dutch Braai + Bar is Buckhead's South African eatery. Chef Philippe Haddad serves wood-fired meats and seafood, and fine steakhouse fare.
Gypsy Kitchen serves Spanish tapas and Basque pinchos, such as Chicken Croquetas, Seafood Paella and Grilled Octopus, in Atlanta's Buckhead area.
Opened in 2016 as the third location of the Fifth Group Restaurants' South City Kitchen, South City Kitchen Buckhead remains true to the tradition of authentic and sophisticated Southern cuisine. Bourbon is big here, and the Whiskey and Vine series offers first tastes of one-of-a-kind bourbon blends aged in wine barrels.
Buckhead's Yebo Beach Haus transforms each season. In summer, the restaurant derives inspiration from various beach locations around the globe. Spring's theme comes from Tulum, Mexico, complete with Coconut Ceviche. From November through February, the restaurant converts into Yebo Ski Haus, when it crafts an entirely new menu and atmosphere.
Atlanta chef and restaurateur Ford Fry serves coastal European food at St. Cecilia in Buckhead. Executive chef Craig Richards combines Old World techniques with Southern ingredients for dishes such as Beef Short Rib Agnolotti.
In Armonk, N.Y., Restaurant North has been recognized with a Slow Food Snail of Approval and four James Beard Award nominations. Executive chef John Poiarkoff sources from regional farms for seafood, pasta, market vegetables and mains.
The Livanos family opened Moderne Barn in 2010 in their hometown of Armonk, N.Y. Executive chef Ethan Kostbar's dishes are inspired by global travel, like as appetizer of sautéed calves' liver with mashed yucca, applewood smoked bacon and a Caribbean pineapple rum sauce.
Chef Roberto Paciullo channels The Bronx's Little Italy in Armonk, N.Y., at the third Zero Otto Nove location. The critically adored eatery serves Neapolitan-style pizza and other Italian specialties, like risotto with fava beans, peas, spicy soppressata and burrata.
Anne and Peter Modroukas transformed a former Swiss tearoom into their seventh restaurant in Armonk, N.Y. Named after their uncle Lou Tiglias' 1940s restaurant, The Beehive serves Mediterranean dishes like Uncle Louie's Moussaka and Shrimp Santorini, plus desserts like apple cobbler with ice cream.
In Armonk, N.Y., charming Gavi Restaurant serves Italian like Calamari Fritti, Gnocchi Bolognese and Scaloppine Martini.
Celebrity pitmaster Myron Mixon (pictured) partners with barbecue championship judge Joe Corey and head pitmaster John Bennet to bring world champion barbecue classics (like the brisket shown here), to Myron Mixon's Pitmaster Barbeque, which opened in Alexandria, Va., in 2017.
Acclaimed for her quirky and imaginative eggrolls, native Alexandrian Meghan (Megg) Baroody expanded her food truck concept, Meggrolls, to a brick-and-mortar restaurant in Alexandria, Va., serving up flavors like Chicken Parm (pictured), Buffalo Wing and Broccoli Mac n Cheese. "Being situated on the outskirts of D.C. is a major benefit to the community of restaurants in Alexandria," says Baroody. "D.C. has such a diverse, multi-demographic base."
Hidden inside Sugar Shack Donuts in Alexandria, Va., Captain Gregory's is a speakeasy that serves handcrafted cocktails (the Tiki Drink is pictured here) alongside food and dessert (doughnuts are available, of course). The nautically themed speakeasy is a nod to Alexandria's history as a port city.
Royal Nepal opened in Alexandria, Va., in 2017 with a menu of creative Nepalese Indian cuisine. Dishes include goat momo dumplings, lamb chops marinated in house-made yogurt and roasted in a wood-burning oven, and classic biryani rice with saffron (pictured).
Situated near Alexandria, Va.'s waterfront in a former feed house from the 1800s, Virtue Feed & Grain is one of Old Town's hot spots for American fare, such as fish tacos, with modern-rustic décor and a vibrant outdoor patio.
Indulge in handmade pasta like fettuccine and clams, and bucatini cacio e pepe at Hank's Pasta Bar in Alexandria, Va. Beloved D.C.-area chef Jamie Leeds opened this spot in 2016 as her dream project.