Here, the F&W Best New Chef alum (Class of 1998) shares his go-to restaurants, from hot newcomers to beloved classics, in the city he calls home. 

By Elyse Inamine
Updated June 23, 2017
Barbuto, New York City
Credit: Courtesy of Michael Symon; Jeffrey Prehn

Cleveland may technically be his home, but Symon is in the Big Apple every week to tape The Chew. “I get the best of both, splitting my time,” the chef says. “Going back to Cleveland keeps me grounded, but I love that there are no limits to the styles of food available in New York City.”


775 Washington St.; 212-924-9700;

“I’ve known Jonathan Waxman for a long time, and I love this restaurant because it’s cool without trying too hard. I always get the roasted chicken with salsa verde and fried potatoes.”


324 Lafayette St.; 212-334-6400;

“The layered eggplant and the vegetable paella are my must-haves at Bobby Flay’s Noho restaurant. You can order a bunch of small bites and experience a ton of flavors and textures.”

Hometown Bar-B-Que

454 Van Brunt St., Brooklyn; 347-294-4644;

“Pit master Billy Durney really knows what he’s doing. This is Texas barbecue meets Brooklyn waterfront. I love his lamb belly banh mi and Chinese sticky ribs with toasted cashews.”

Joe’s Pizza

7 Carmine St.; 212-366-1182;

“I try to get to Joe’s on Carmine Street whenever possible, and the order is always a plain slice with fresh mozzarella.”

Little Owl

90 Bedford St.; 212-741-4695;

“I love this West Village spot for brunch, but you can’t go wrong with Joey Campanaro’s gravy-slicked meatball sliders for dinner.”


170 Thompson St.; 212-982-5089;

“Get a big board of salumi and a glass of wine at Mario Batali’s Roman trattoria.”

Via Carota

51 Grove St.; 212-255-1962;

“My wife, Liz, and I always go to Jody Williams’s little spot. Liz is vegetarian, and all the vegetables on the menu are delicious.”