really good food
April 21, 2010 12:54 PM   Subscribe

foodie filter: i'm eating my way through this list, thanks to work related travel.

cochon was remarkable, as was tinto (had an incredible meal that somehow went for 2.5 hours without even realizing it). will cover central michel richard this weekend.

what are your suggestions for truly divine intentionally prepared food experiences in/near larger cities in the us? more in the dc metro area/md/virginia/wvirginia? chicago? miami? nashville? sf bay area? los angeles?

places do not have to be wicked expensive, can be veggie/vegan. all that matters is good food. food that is intentionally made is key, though.

thanks folks!
posted by anya32 to Food & Drink (12 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
Philadelphia recommendations: Amada is Tinto's big brother with more standard-Spanish tapas. Chifa's is another Garcia venture in town, and has Peruvian-Chinese cooking. Their tasting menu is Worth It.

And if you're available for brunch, Sabrina's near the Italian Market is life-changing. (There is another branch by the Art Museum, but I've found it vastly inferior.)
posted by joyceanmachine at 1:03 PM on April 21, 2010

I'd suggest Schwa in Chicago, Manresa in the SF Bay Area, and Blue Hill in NY... I'd avoid Ubuntu, the chef bailed not that long ago and the food has apparently gone way down hill.
posted by foodgeek at 1:04 PM on April 21, 2010

Chez Panisse in Berkeley (sf bay area)
posted by brainmouse at 1:05 PM on April 21, 2010

I wasn't terribly impressed with Central--our table by the open kitchen was also, apparently, in the way, as I was constantly bumped by servers. And the much-touted fried chicken was, well, fried chicken. The Minibar at Cafe Atlantico was amazing, as are Andres' other restaruants, Jaleo and Zaytinya, all in DC. We went to Cashion's Eat Place this past weekend and had a fabulous meal. Last year, we did the big one, Inn at Little Washington, and it was great, too, but I honestly don't know that it was worth the trip if you're just going to eat.

My votes for DC are Minibar, way out in front, then Jaleo.
posted by MrMoonPie at 1:14 PM on April 21, 2010

My DC information is fairly dated (just over three years since I got to really eat out while I was there.), but I Makoto, Japanese, not sushi. Black Salt is another favorite, just up MacArthur for Makoto. Neither is hugely expensive, and probably not close to the likes of Burni's list, just my favorites.

Also, as far as I know, The Inn at Little Washington, is still going strong, and it's a wonderful experience. It's eighty miles, or so from DC (still counts as NoVa though).
posted by Some1 at 1:18 PM on April 21, 2010

Joel Robuchon(not L'Atelier, haven't been there, just Joel Robuchon) in Las Vegas was incredible. Highly recommended, but it's stupid pricey.

If you're ever up near Quebec City, La Taniere, is absolutely fantastic, too.

Can food be made unintentionally?
posted by Grither at 1:21 PM on April 21, 2010

In Baltimore, Woodbury Kitchen would probably please you. I've also had several very interesting and tasty meals at the B&O Brasserie.
posted by QIbHom at 1:22 PM on April 21, 2010

Chicago: Alinea, Schwa, L2O, Moto. I've only been to Alinea - it was the greatest thing ever. I would kill to go to the others (in the order I've listed them).
posted by Xalf at 2:13 PM on April 21, 2010

Seconding the group of Jose Andres restaurants in DC - there is also Oyamel in addition to the other ones already mentioned. I try to go to Oyamel whenever I'm in DC. I've had excellent experiences at all four of Andres's DC restaurants, and the Minibar at Cafe Atlantico is on my to-do list.

Dallas wasn't specifically in your question, but it's got one nod on the list you linked. In Dallas, I recommend Nana and the French Room. In Fort Worth, I recommend Lonesome Dove Bistro.
posted by Terriniski at 3:30 PM on April 21, 2010

Buddakan in Philadelphia and Recess in Indianapolis.
posted by cynicalidealist at 4:26 PM on April 21, 2010

To be honest, I'm not sure exactly what you mean by "intentional" but -- two great places in DC:
-- Restaurant Nora -- delicious; reasonably, but not crazy, expensive
-- Komi -- also delcious. Crazy expensive.
posted by inigo2 at 6:13 PM on April 21, 2010

Another take on Philly - Sabrina's serves a really good brunch. Buddakan is more dining-as-theater than foodie. Neither place merits even a mention in a list that includes Alinea, Chez Panisse, etc.

Amada, OTOH, is the real deal - see if you can round up some companions and get the suckling pig. As is Vetri - look for the degustazione menu. The Omakase menu at Morimoto. The prix fixe at Le Bec Fin. Panorama for the world's largest cruvinet - including premier cru bordeaux.

You should also consider Zahav - not quite divine, but a unique menu (contemporary Israeli) very well executed.

Philly is also a superb sandwich city - perhaps more so than any other in America. Get anything at either Paesanos location. Get a cheesesteak at John's Roast Pork. Get a roast pork at the same place, or at DiNic's in the Reading Terminal Market. Get a hoagie at Sarcones. Get a meatball sandwich at Chickie's or Shank's. Get a chicken and falafel sandwich from the cart on the northeast corner of 20th and Market. (Note that the cart and John's Roast Pork have very user unfriendly hours)

And if you're willing to forsake atmosphere, there are dozens of really good, really cheap restaurants of varying Asian cuisines in Chinatown and South Philly
posted by coolgeek at 7:55 PM on April 21, 2010

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