Los Angeles: Locol
It’s impossible for me not to be thrilled by this new fast food spot by F&W Best New Chefs Daniel Patterson and Roy Choi, who are bringing well-sourced burgers and soft serve to Watts. 1950 E. 103rd St.; welocol.com.
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San Antonio: Hotel Emma
My new favorite hotel is in an old brewery. In addition to the stellar restaurant, Supper, there’s a lobby bar, Sternewirth, named for a tradition entitling brewery workers to free beer (love that). 136 E. Grayson St.; thehotelemma.com.
Atlanta: Ticonderoga Club
I planned predinner drinks at this Krog Street Market bar from Greg Best and Paul Calvert, but the menu was so appealing, I also had an Ipswich Clam Roll (terrific). 99 Krog St. NE; ticonderogaclub.com.
Chicago: Fat Rice Bakery
The latest from genius chef Abraham Conlon of Fat Rice. The standout pastry for me: crispy, creamy Portuguese egg tarts. 2957 W. Diversey Ave.; eatfatrice.com.
Portand, Oregon: Coquine
A small, French-style restaurant with sensational bostock: a little-known, much-deserving pastry made from day-old brioche and almond frangipane. 6839 SE Belmont St.; coquinepdx.com.
Executive Food Editor
Nashville: The 404 Kitchen
Chef Matt Bolus’s corn bread with sorghum butter, served in a cast-iron skillet, is the best I’ve ever had, with a deep corn flavor and an amazing, almost creamy texture. 404 12th Ave.; the404nashville.com.
The spectacular supper-club reincarnation of the historic Locke-Ober restaurant. I loved the lively vibe, whimsical cocktails and round-the-world plates like maitake mushroom toasts with whipped miso. 2 Winter Pl.; yvonnesboston.com.
Savannah, Georgia: Sandfly Bar-B-Q
At this barbecue joint in a charming retro diner, the big surprise was The Wally: a duck-fat-fried chicken finger sandwich with lashings of ranch dressing. 1220 Barnard St.; sandflybbq.com.