Best Southern Food in the U.S.
Defined by an abundance of fresh seafood and produce, grain-producing marshlands and a melting pot of Spanish/French/West African culture, Southern cuisine is soul-warming comfort food at its best. Charleston and New Orleans are at the top of my short list for food-forward destinations, cities whose mere mention conjures up the smell of crab and shrimp sautéing in a pan. But don't stop your culinary tour there: Nashville; Jackson, Mississippi; Birmingham, Alabama; and Savannah, Georgia, are all on my radar, as local chefs revisit (and revive) classic Southern recipes passed through the generations. —Andrew Zimmern.
Atlanta chef Linton Hopkins and his team make everything from scratch with locally sourced ingredients, right down to the hot pepper sauce and mustard. The owners are so dedicated to supporting regional farms that they founded the Peachtree Road Farmers' Market, just a few blocks from the restaurant. Restaurant Eugene's menu is divided into fish, meat and game, and vegetables, with exceptional choices in each (moulard duck with spoonbread puree and foie gras butter, Georgia mountain trout, sweetbreads with creamed kale and pickled onions). restauranteugene.com