Besides talent, creativity and ambition, these stars share one more distinction: they're all former F&W best new chefs (and we spotted them way back when!). Here are their current home bases. Consider this the only restaurant guide you'll ever need.

By Kate Sekules
Updated: March 28, 2016

ARIZONA

 

PARADISE VALLEY

 

Elements
Charles Wiley | 1994
Wiley complements stunning Paradise Valley views with lively and unpretentious dishes like artichoke and roasted garlic casserole and sake-cured salmon (5700 E. McDonald Rd.; 480-607-2300).

 

PHOENIX

 

Christopher's Fermier Brasserie
Christopher Gross | 1989
A veteran of Paris, London and L.A. kitchens, Gross offers wood-oven roasting and 100 wines by the glass (2584 E. Camelback Rd.; 602- 522-2344).

 

SCOTTSDALE

 

Mosaic
Deborah Knight | 2002
See America's Best New Chefs 2002 (10600 E. Jomax Rd.; 480-563-9600).

Restaurant Hapa
James McDevitt | 1999
"Pan-Asian contemporary" describes McDevitt's spare, appealing food, such as crisped sweetbreads with tamarind glaze (6204 N. Scottsdale Rd.; 480-998-8220).

Roaring Fork
Robert McGrath | 1988
Beef tenderloin "shellacked" with coffee-molasses is one of the playful dishes at McGrath's ranchlike home base (4800 N. Scottsdale Rd.; 480-947-0795).

 

CALIFORNIA

 

 

BERKELEY

 

Café Rouge
Marsha McBride | 1997
McBride favors hormone-free meats dry-aged or cured on site, plus Mediterranean grazing plates (1782 Fourth St.; 510-525-1440).

Chez Panisse
Kelsie Kerr | 1997
Kerr displays her talents as co-chef (with Christopher Lee) at Alice Waters' ur-California-cuisine mecca (1517 Shattuck Ave.; 510-548-5525).

 

BEVERLY HILLS

 

Matsuhisa
Nobu Matsuhisa | 1989
This is the amazingly modest first restaurant from the Japanese-fusion maestro the world knows as Nobu (129 N. La Cienega Blvd.; 310-659-9639).

Polo Lounge at Beverly Hills Hotel
Katsuo Sugiura | 1989
"Suki" Sugiura's revival of the glittering Rat Pack–era hangout puts an Asian edge on American standards (9641 Sunset Blvd.; 310-276-2251).

Spago Beverly Hills
Lee Hefter | 1998
Foie gras, sashimi, goulash--Hefter masters all at Wolfgang Puck's star-studded joint (176 N. Cañon Dr.; 310-385-0880).

 

LA JOLLA

 

George's at the Cove
Trey Foshee | 1998
Foshee serves superior seafood at this oceanside spot (1250 Prospect St.; 858-454-4244).

 

LOS ANGELES

 

Campanile
Mark Peel & Nancy Silverton | 1990
Peel's food continues to exemplify California's clean cuisine, here crowned by pastry chef Silverton's big, bold finishes (624 S. La Brea Ave.; 323-938-1447).

Jar
Suzanne Tracht | 2002
See America's Best New Chefs 2002 (8225 Beverly Blvd.; 323-655-6566).

Lucques
Suzanne Goin | 1999
In an adorable brick carriage house on a busy L.A. strip, Goin serves creative Cal-bistro dishes (8474 Melrose Ave.; 323-655-6277).

 

NEWPORT BEACH

 

Aubergine
Tim Goodell | 2000
A former florist's cottage houses Goodell's ever-evolving French-with-a-twist (508 29th St.; 949-723-4150).

 

PASADENA

 

Celestino
Celestino Drago | 1993
Drago serves dressed-up Italian peasant food: bresaola with grapefruit, squid-ink risotto, pumpkin tortelloni (141 S. Lake Ave.; 626-795-4006).

 

SAN FRANCISCO

 

Boulevard
Nancy Oakes | 1993
Big braises, grilled meats and wood-oven roasts are Oakes' megapopular signature dishes at this Belle Epoque institution (1 Mission St.; 415-543-6084).

Delfina
Craig Stoll | 2001
In a Mission District space full of dark wood, Stoll tweaks farmers' market produce into fuss-free Italian dishes (3621 18th St.; 415-552-4055).

Fifth Floor
Laurent Gras | 2002
See America's Best New Chefs 2002 (12 Fourth St.; 415-348-1555).

Fleur de Lys
Hubert Keller | 1988
Keller learned from such masters as Bocuse, Lenôtre and Vergé, and his pedigree is evident in his brilliant command of classical French cuisine (777 Sutter St.; 415-673-7779).

42 Degrees
Jim Moffat | 1996
The latitude--and attitude--of Provence is the inspiration behind Moffat's supper and jazz club (235 16th St.; 415-777-5558).

Fringale
Gerald Hirigoyen | 1994
Hirigoyen's pleasing Basque bistro offers pork tenderloin confit on the edge of the Tenderloin (570 Fourth St.; 415-543-0573).

Gary Danko
Gary Danko | 1989
Danko serves his signature French-American marvels in an unlikely location: Fisherman's Wharf (800 N. Point St.; 415-749-2060).

Home
Lance Dean Velasquez | 1996
Meat loaf Tuesday, cioppino Saturday, roast chicken every day: Velasquez dishes out homey cuisine in a glam room (2100 Market St.; 415-503-0333).

Jardinière
Traci Des Jardins | 1995
A brick, steel and black marble dining room makes a dramatic setting for Des Jardins' fresh Cal-French food (300 Grove St.; 415-861-5555).

Masa's
Ron Siegel | 1999
Siegel's sublime French-Japanese livens up a venerable, and newly modernized, parlor room (648 Bush St.; 415-989-7154).

Mecca
Mike Fennelly | 1993 A huge "industrial luxe" dining room serves as the stage for Fennelly's Asian-spiked American cuisine (2029 Market St.; 415-621-7000).

Merenda
Keith Luce | 1997
Luce takes most of his culinary cues from France at this intimate, red-walled restaurant (1809 Union St.; 415-346-7373).

Restaurant Elisabeth Daniel
Daniel Patterson | 1997
Patterson presents genteel French food with eclectic touches in an equally elegant room (550 Washington St.; 415-397-6129).

Rose Pistola
Reed Hearon | 1994
Northern Italian seafood con brio keeps Hearon's North Beach place going strong--and large, and loud (532 Columbus Ave.; 415-399-0499).

JiRaffe
Raphael Lunetta | 1997
In this bi-level, glass-fronted restaurant, Lunetta sends out fresh, inventive French dishes (502 Santa Monica Blvd.; 310-917-6671).

Melisse Restaurant
Josiah Citrin | 1997
A stark space decorated with light brocades is Citrin's backdrop for sparkling mod-French food (1104 Wilshire Blvd.; 310-395-0881).

 

ST. HELENA

 

Terra
Lissa Doumani & Hiro Sone | 1991
The husband-and-wife chef team have run their stone-walled Napa classic, serving globally inflected French and Italian food, for 14 years (1345 Railroad Ave.; 707-963-8931).

 

WOODSIDE

 

Village Pub
Mark Sullivan | 2002
See America's Best New Chefs 2002 (2967 Woodside Rd.; 650-851-9888).

 

YOUNTVILLE

 

The French Laundry
Thomas Keller | 1988
A supreme innovator, Napa superstar Keller still astonishes after eight years (6640 Washington St.; 707-944-2380).

 

COLORADO

 

 

ASPEN

 

Renaissance
Charles Dale | 1995
In this cozy space, Dale whips up creative dishes like coffee-seared ahi tuna with yam polenta and mole sauce (304 E. Hopkins Ave.; 888-311-2433).

 

CONNECTICUT

 

 

RIVERSIDE

 

Aux Délices
Debra Ponzek | 1989
Country French takeout, a catering service and a tiny clutch of tables form Ponzek's Greenwich-area domain (1075 E. Putnam Ave.; 203-698-1066).

 

FLORIDA

 

 

CORAL GABLES

 

Pascal's on Ponce
Pascal Oudin | 1995
Oudin's small, sweet slice of Paris doles out contemporary French comfort food, like his beloved lobster bisque (2611 Ponce De Leon Blvd.; 305-444-2024).

 

DELRAY BEACH

 

32 East
Nick Morfogen | 1996
Morfogen writes the menu daily, offering Mediterranean-American hybrids like hanger steak on roast-garlic polenta (32 E. Atlantic Ave.; 561-276-7868).

 

FT. LAUDERDALE

 

Mark's Las Olas
Mark Militello | 1990
Militello prepares vivacious Floridian inventions in a vast open-kitchen space with a grand terrace (1032 E. Las Olas Blvd.; 954-463-1000).

 

MIAMI

 

Baleen
Robin Haas | 1994
Imaginative seafood is Haas' style; try the Asian bouillabaisse in hot-and-sour broth (4 Grove Isle Dr.; 305-857-5007).

Chef Allen's
Allen Susser | 1991
Famed Caribbean-Latin-Euro fusionist Susser is still forging new paths after 16 years (19088 N.E. 29th Ave.; 305-935-2900).

Rumi
Larkin Selman | 1993
Selman is part of the Med-Caribbean cuisine team at this South Beach hot spot (330 Lincoln Rd.; 305-672-4353).

Wish
E. Michael Reidt | 2001
Reidt showcases his Brazilian-French food in jazzy, color-mad, Todd Oldham–designed rooms (801 Collins Ave.; 305-674-9474).

 

PALM BEACH

 

The Restaurant at the Four Seasons
Hubert Des Marais | 1993
Attention-getting dishes like guava-braised short ribs mark Des Marais' signature style at this upscale property (2800 S. Ocean Blvd.; 561-533-3750).

 

GEORGIA

 

 

ATHENS

 

Five & Ten
Hugh Acheson | 2002
See America's Best New Chefs 2002 (1653 S. Lumpkin St.; 706-546-7300).

 

ATLANTA

 

Bacchanalia
Anne Quatrano & Clifford Harrison | 1995
In a 1920s meatpacking plant with midtown skyline views, the chef duo turn out honest new-American food (1198 Howell Mill Rd.; 404-365-0410).

 

BUCKHEAD

 

Soto Japanese Restaurant
Sotohiro Kosugi | 1997
Locals line up for Kosugi's creative sushi and sashimi, which may contain, say, truffle vinegar (3330 Piedmont Rd.; 404-233-2005).

 

ILLINOIS

 

 

CHICAGO

 

Blackbird
Paul Kahan | 1999
Kahan does showy but soulful Euro-American food in a minimalist white bo--te (619 W. Randolph St.; 312-715-0708).

Everest
Jean Joho | 1989
A swanky room at mountaintop altitude makes a perfect match for Joho's haute, luxe French dishes (440 La Salle St.; 312-663-8920).

Frontera Grill and Topolobampo
Rick Bayless | 1988
Adjacent places, one fancy and one plain, serve Mexican-food ambassador Bayless' beautiful regional cuisine (445 N. Clark St.; 312-661-1434).

Kevin
Kevin Shikami | 1991
A relaxed, brick-walled space displays Shikami's refreshing Japanese-American hybrid cuisine, which goes easy on butter and cream (9 W. Hubbard St.; 312-595-0055).

NoMI
Sandro Gamba | 2001
Gamba cooks Asian-spiked French in a gorgeous, wood-rich room (800 N. Michigan Ave.; 312-239-4030).

Tru
Rick Tramonto & Gale Gand | 1994
A spacious white-on-white dining room sets off Tramonto's winsome presentations--such as caviar on a glass staircase--and Gand's divine sweets (676 N. St. Clair St.; 312-202-0001).

 

CHICAGO SUBURBS

 

Elaine
Ted Cizma | 2000
Three compact rooms in a house that dates back to the mid-nineteenth century are the setting for Cizma's robust new-American dishes (10 W. Jackson St., Naperville; 630-548-3100).

Gabriel's
Gabriel Viti | 1991
Viti's luxurious Italian-French food walks the line between traditional and inventive (310 Green Bay Rd., Highwood; 847-433-0031).

Le Français
Don Yamauchi | 1993
Yamauchi's creative cooking works a wide variety of international ingredients into French dishes, marking a splendid new era for a storied institution (269 S. Milwaukee Ave., Wheeling; 847-541-7470).

Trio
Grant Achatz | 2002
See America's Best New Chefs 2002 (1625 Hinman Ave., Evanston; 847-733-8746).

 

LOUISIANA

 

 

NEW ORLEANS

 

Bayona
Susan Spicer | 1989
For a dozen years, Spicer has interpreted cuisines from around the world in this color-blocked French Quarter cottage (430 Dauphine St.; 504-525-4455).

Brigtsen's
Frank Brigtsen | 1988
Brigtsen continues where his mentor, Paul Prudhomme, left off: Acadian classics, no pretensions (723 Dante St.; 504-861-7610).

Gamay Bistro & Bar
Greg Sonnier | 1994
Sonnier produces lusty Cajun-Creole dishes in this cool, calming room (320 Decatur St.; 504-299-8800).

Lilette
John Harris | 2002
See America's Best New Chefs 2002 (3637 Magazine St.; 504-895-1636).

Peristyle
Anne Kearney | 1998
Kearney turns out bold, fresh, Louisiana-tinged French food in a homey, welcoming space (1041 Dumaine St.; 504-593-9535).

Restaurant August
John Besh | 1999
Trend-conscious Euro with Creole touches makes Besh the chef with buzz (301 Tchoupitoulas St.; 504-299-9777).

 

MASSACHUSETTS

 

 

BOSTON

 

Hamersley's Bistro
Gordon Hamersley | 1988
Wooden beams and banquettes provide a mellow environment for Hamersley's vibrant comfort-food creations (553 Tremont St.; 617-423-2700).

Mantra
Thomas John | 2002
See America's Best New Chefs 2002 (52 Temple Pl.; 617-542-8111).

No. 9 Park
Barbara Lynch | 1996
Nostalgic, '40s-era decor frames Lynch's lovable country dishes from Italy and the south of France (9 Park St.; 617-742-9991).

Radius
Michael Schlow | 1996
Schlow presents his high-style French food in a spacious dining room painted in an earthy palette of olive green and burgundy (8 High St.; 617-426-1234).

 

CAMBRIDGE

 

Centro
Rene Michelena | 1998
Prepare to wait for a seat at this wee trattoria, where Michelena's genuine cucina rustica draws eager crowds--and reservations are only accepted for a limited number of tables (720 Massachusetts Ave.; 617-868-2405).

Metro
Amanda Lydon | 2000
In an enormous, retro-style brasserie complete with a zinc bar, Lydon serves classics like coq au vin and steak frites (1815 Massachusetts Ave.; 617-354-3727).

Rialto
Jody Adams | 1993
Adams' serious yet merry Spanish-Provençal-Tuscan cooking is complemented by sensual surroundings (Charles Hotel, 1 Bennett St.; 617-661-5050).

Salts
Steve Rosen | 1999
Honey-seared salmon or lobster pie may show up on Rosen's no-fuss menu in this sunshine-yellow room (798 Main St.; 617-876-8444).

 

CHARLESTOWN

 

Olives
Todd English | 1990
English's two signature chains, Figs and Olives, have grown so rapidly it's clear that his upscale pan-Euro food has a big following. This was his first branch (10 City Sq.; 617-242-1999).

 

WEST NEWTON

 

Lumière
Michael Leviton | 2000
Leviton's clear flavors and faultless French technique are enhanced by simple decor and diffused light (1293 Washington St.; 617-244-9199).

 

MICHIGAN

 

 

FARMINGTON HILLS

 

Tribute
Takashi Yagihashi | 2000
A muraled room is a theatrical stage for Yagihashi's Japanese-French food (31425 Orchard Lake Rd.; 248-848-9393).

 

MINNESOTA

 

 

BLOOMINGTON

 

Napa Valley Grille
Tim Anderson | 1991
Anderson works miracles with Cal-cuisine staples like heirloom vegetables and wild game, inside the world's biggest mall (220 W. Market, Mall of America; 952-858-9934).

 

STILLWATER

 

La Belle Vie
Tim McKee | 1997
Victorian decor meets a contemporary French menu from McKee, who's fond of his wood-fired oven (312 S. Main St.; 651-430-3545).

 

NEVADA

 

 

LAS VEGAS

 

Nectar
John Schenk | 1995
Schenk plates mammoth portions of raw-bar delicacies and addictive dishes, like fried green tomatoes, in this jolly blue lounge (Bellagio hotel, 3600 S. Las Vegas Blvd.; 702-693-7223).

Renoir
Alessandro Stratta | 1994
Modern-French whiz Stratta competes with four Renoirs and wins, thanks to his immense flavors (Mirage hotel, 3400 S. Las Vegas Blvd.; 702-791-7442).

 

NEW MEXICO

 

 

SANTA FE

 

Fuego
Kevin Graham | 1991
In a rustic dining room at a posh Santa Fe resort, Graham serves sophisticated, regionally inspired cuisine against a flamenco-guitar backdrop (La Posada Resort & Spa, 330 E. Palace Ave.; 505-954-9678).

 

TAOS

 

Joseph's Table
Joseph Wrede | 2000
Wrede conjures spirited flavors from all-local ingredients in a fresco-decorated space. Due to move later this year (4167 Paseo del Pueblo Sur; 505-751-4512).

 

NEW YORK

 

 

NEW YORK CITY

 

Annisa
Anita Lo | 2001
Lo scours the globe--Asia, the Middle East, Morocco--for inspiration and gets breathtaking results (13 Barrow St.; 212-741-6699).

Blue Hill
Michael Anthony & Dan Barber | 2002
See America's Best New Chefs 2002 (75 Washington Pl.; 212-539-1776).

Bouley
David Bouley | 1989
A master of modernized classical French, Bouley recently reopened this Tribeca destination, expanding the dining room into the former bakery space next door (120 W. Broadway; 212-964-2525).

Café Boulud
Andrew Carmellini | 2000 Carmellini offers vigorous, refined French cuisine at a restaurant owned by his mentor, Daniel Boulud (20 E. 76th St.; 212-772-2600).

Cello
Laurent Tourondel | 1998
Tourondel's exquisitely subtle seafood delicacies are presented in a patrician parlor (53 E. 77th St.; 212-517-1200).

Commune
Matthew Kenney | 1994
Kenney applies North African flavor combinations to New York contemporary dishes in this high-energy setting (12 E. 22nd St.; 212-777-2600).

Daniel
Daniel Boulud | 1988
Boulud is Gotham's preeminent master of French cuisine, and this plush, ornate salon provides a fitting frame for his decadent dishes (60 E. 65th St.; 212-288-0033).

Gramercy Tavern
Tom Colicchio | 1991
Colicchio's virtuosity with rustic American, French and Italian food makes this one of New York City's treasured territories (42 E. 20th St.; 212-477-0777).

Ouest
Tom Valenti | 1990
In an elegant bistro, Valenti thrills the Upper West Side (and the celebrities who live there) with hearty, impeccable dishes (2315 Broadway; 212-580-8700).

Picholine
Terrance Brennan | 1995
Brennan refreshes the French canon and serves the ultimate cheese board, in a romantic space near Lincoln Center (35 W. 64th St.; 212 724 8585).

Union Pacific
Rocco DiSpirito | 1999
Culinary pinup DiSpirito displays his passion for experimentation in a soaring room with a Zen ambience (111 E. 22nd St.; 212-995-8500).

Union Square Cafe
Dan Silverman | 1997 & Michael Romano | 1991
Silverman and Romano's generous Euro-American food, served in gallery-like rooms, keeps this 16-year-old restaurant at the top of New Yorkers' list (21 E. 16th St.; 212-243-4020).

Veritas
Scott Bryan | 1996
Bryan offers up his signature braises, roasts and grills in an urban-chic setting with stellar wines (43 E. 20th St.; 212-353-3700).

 

NORTH CAROLINA

 

 

DURHAM

 

Magnolia Grill
Ben Barker | 1993
Barker draws constant crowds with his imaginative Southern-inspired bistro food and relaxed, wood-floored space (1002 Ninth St.; 919-286-3609).

 

OHIO

 

 

CLEVELAND

 

Lola
Michael Symon | 1998
A somewhat sci-fi dining room displays Symon's exuberant multi-culti cooking (900 Literary Rd.; 216-771-5652).

 

PENNSYLVANIA

 

 

PHILADELPHIA

 

Avenue B
Francesco Martorella | 1990
At this pretheater favorite with a daily-changing menu, Martorella's attention to detail is evident in dishes like a napoleon of roasted red peppers and a veal rib chop Milanese (260 S. Broad St.; 215-790-0705).

Jack's Firehouse
Jack McDavid | 1991
McDavid's "haute country" cuisine--pea and hog jowl soup, for instance--livens up a nineteenth-century fire station (2130 Fairmount Ave.; 215-232-9000).

¡Pasión!
Guillermo Pernot | 1998
Pernot does fanciful, bountiful Nuevo Latino at this one-stop churrascaria and seviche bar (211 S. 15th St.; 215-875-9895).

Red Chopstix
Bruce Lim | 1990
Lim's Euro-Asian menu marries the best of both continents, as in his venison scaloppine with baby bok choy (1511 Locust St.; 215-546-0600).

Susanna Foo
Susanna Foo | 1989
It's Chinese food, but not as we know it. Nobody can tinker with a wonton like Foo can (1512 Walnut St.; 215-545-2666).

Vetri
Marc Vetri | 1999
Exquisite balance is Vetri's hallmark at his 10-table labor of love…for Italy (1312 Spruce St.; 215-732-3478).

 

RHODE ISLAND

 

 

PROVIDENCE

 

Al Forno
Johanne Killeen & George Germon | 1988
The essential destination for paper-thin pizzas. Killeen and Germon's kingdom has grown, but it hasn't spread too thin (577 S. Main St.; 401-273-9767).

Empire
Loren Falsone & Eric Moshier | 2000
Falsone and Moshier's daily menus celebrate southern Italy in a renovated 1912 mock-Renaissance car showroom (123 Empire St.; 401-621-7911).

 

TENNESSEE

 

 

MEMPHIS

 

Chez Philippe
José Gutierrez | 1990
Amid faux Louis XIV splendor, Gutierrez merges the American South with southern France (Peabody Hotel, 149 Union Ave.; 901-529-4188).

 

TEXAS

 

 

HOUSTON

 

Américas
Michael Cordua | 1994
An energetic, perpetually packed dining room decorated with Inca motifs makes a striking background for Nicaraguan Cordua's fascinating Latin ideas--quail tacos! (1800 Post Oak Blvd.; 713-961-1492).

Boulevard Bistrot
Monica Pope | 1996
Crowds flock to this laid-back bistro to sample Pope's Moroccan–Middle Eastern flourishes (4319 Montrose Blvd.; 713-524-6922).

 

SAN ANTONIO

 

Biga
Bruce Auden | 1988
Auden does big American food with a distinctive Mex-Asian accent in this Texan hacienda (203 S. St. Marys St.; 210-225-0722).

 

VIRGINIA

 

 

McLEAN

 

Maestro
Fabio Trabocchi | 2002
See America's Best New Chefs 2002 (Ritz-Carlton Tysons Corner, 1700 Tysons Blvd.; 703-821-1515).

 

RICHMOND

 

Acacia
Dale Reitzer | 1999
Reitzer elevates his cosmopolitan dishes with sprightly sauces--orange-cumin, lime-ginger--in a casual terra-cotta-floored place named after his big dog (3325 W. Cary St.; 804-354-6060).

 

WASHINGTON

 

 

SEATTLE

 

Brasa
Tamara Murphy | 1994
Murphy's innovative cuisine can best be described as the Northwest meets Iberia (2107 Third Ave.; 206-728-4220).

Earth & Ocean
Johnathan Sundstrom | 2001
Sundstrom isn't afraid to serve ultratrendy dishes like wild boar ravioli at his headquarters inside the W Hotel, where he attracts an enthusiastic following (1112 Fourth Ave.; 206-264-6060).

727 Pine
Danielle Custer | 1998
Round-the-world culinary influences, cheeky ideas (such as a three-course steak menu) and ingenious combinations distinguish Custer's cooking at this glam destination (727 Pine St.; 206-774-6400).

 

WASHINGTON, D.C.

 

 

Galileo da Roberto Donna
Roberto Donna | 1990
A one-man industry, Piedmont-born Donna plies Washingtonians with delicious Northern Italian dishes done every which way (1110 21st St. NW; 202-293-7191).

 

Palena
Frank Ruta | 2001
Former White House chef Ruta, who cooked for both Republican and Democratic presidents, dresses up Italian peasant food for Beltway connoisseurs (3529 Connecticut Ave. NW; 202-537-9250).

 

--Research by Jessica Blatt

 

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