ALL POSTS TAGGED "[restaurants]"

An overhead view of the atrium in Rose’s Luxury. (Photo by Kathleen Rellihan)

Where’s the best new restaurant in America? The answer might surprise you. It’s not in New York or San Francisco, 2 cities that boast award-winning restaurants on every block and attract flocks of foodies on pilgrimages. In its annual list, Bon Appétit magazine recently named Rose’s Luxury, an eclectic restaurant in Washington, DC, that mixes Southern hospitality with playful dishes, the Best New Restaurant in America. In the past, Washington might have been more associated with power lunches than a powerful restaurant scene, but with the bragging rights it has earned now, it might inspire a few foodie pilgrimages of its own.

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Looking for a table with a view for your next summer night out? OpenTable just released their 2014 Diners’ Choice Award Winners for Most Scenic Restaurants.

Whether you’re looking for a sun-drenched table on a private Hawaiian beach or a panoramic vista of the New York City skyline, these restaurants serve up delectable cuisine paired with postcard-worthy views.  This year’s list of winning restaurants with breathtaking views is based on more than 5 million restaurant reviews for more than 19,000 restaurants nationwide.

It’s no surprise that California, with its dramatic coastal views, dominates with 38 winning restaurants; Washington follows with 7 honorees, Hawaii with 5 and Florida with 4. Restaurants don’t need to be oceanfront to wow diners — desert backdrops and majestic mountains put Arizona, Colorado and Wyoming on the list, too.

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“Chocolate Trio” at The Spiced Pear; Photo by OpenTable

Haven’t made a reservation yet for Valentine’s Day dinner? Better get on that — it’s only a week away! Need ideas of where to go? OpenTable released their 2014 Most Romantic Restaurants in America, as voted by OpenTable diners.

Whether you’re looking to rekindle the flames with a fireside meal or prefer to woo your S.O. over sake and sushi, these restaurants are sure to inspire a little romance.  This year’s list of winning restaurants with swoon-worthy dishes and come-hither ambiance spans more than 32 states and is based on more than 5 million restaurant reviews. It must be the dreamy coastal views, because California, Florida and Hawaii boast the most romantic restaurants. And the cuisine that’s this year’s favorite for flirting over? Fondue.

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Austin Food

Earlier this month, I attended the South by Southwest Interactive festival in Austin, TX. While my days were filled with attending panels on digital media and meeting with tech startups, no trip to Austin would be complete without indulging in Austin’s delicious food scene. Here are my top 5 picks for best eats (and drinks!) in Austin, after 5 years of attending South by Southwest!

La Condesa
400A West 2nd St
La Condesa is high-end Mexican. Sit outside if the weather’s nice, and try their guacamole, margaritas, and their assortment of delicious, unique tacos. The fish tacos there were my favorites.

Manuel’s Downtown
310 Congress Ave
Manuel’s is also an upscale Mexican restaurant. They’re well known for their fresh, delicious salsas and queso, and tacos and mole enchiladas. Make sure to make a reservation in advance!

Uchi
4200 N Lamar Blvd
You probably weren’t expecting sushi in Texas, but this place is a must-try while in Austin! Chef Tyson Cole is a James Beard award winner and sushi master. Try one of the tastings, and get a variety of different sushi and sashimi to try. Some favorites of mine are the shag roll, the zero sen roll, and the wagyu beef.

Second Bar & Kitchen
200 Congress Ave
Second offers contemporary American food with a twist. Make reservations, because it gets crowded. Try the buffalo fried pickles, avocado fundido, truffle fries and yellowtail carpaccio.

Iron Works BBQ
100 Red River
Iron Works is a staple for barbeque in Austin! It’s close to the convention center, making it a perfect place to stop by for lunch in between SXSW events. Be prepared for a long line, but it moves quickly  – and it’s worth it! Grab a barbeque sandwich or load up on one of their BBQ plates full of sliced beef with potato salad and beans on the side.

For more on Nisha’s trip to Austin, check out her Postcard From South By Southwest

You May Also Like:
Austin City Guide
Austin Foodie Foray
Austin’s Best Bars

Thanksgiving Out

Not everyone is into the idea of slaving away in the kitchen on Thanksgiving, but everyone likes the idea of a warm, fresh Thanksgiving Day meal. There’s no shame is heading to a restaurant for your fill on this holiday. In fact, many restaurants are doing it up better than any of our grandmas could (no offense to Grandma). We found a few restaurants with special holiday menus that are making us second-guess a home-cooked meal.

New York City
There are plenty of restaurants serving a special prix-fixe menu on Thanksgiving in the Big Apple, but the idea of eating just steps away from the site of the holiday’s biggest parade is too good to pass up. At Picholine, Chef Terrance Brennan is serving a $115 prix-fixe menu featuring 4 courses including a choice of Amish farm turkey, beef, salmon, sole or wild mushroom risotto. With pumpkin bisque with black-truffle foam and a lobster and sweet potato appetizer also on the menu, how can you say no?

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The stifling heat this summer has me dreaming about the ocean breezes on a tiny island 30 miles out to sea. A place where no one spends much time indoors, where cobblestone streets weave through town, where protected land — nearly 50% of the entire island! — reigns supreme, and where you may just find yourself with a warm stretch of beach all to yourself.

My version of paradise is Nantucket, MA — the “Faraway Island.” Packed within this island of 105 square miles, you’ll find a place where days can be spent lazing on a quiet beach, afternoons can be enjoyed shopping for one-of-a-kind items at tiny boutiques and evenings savored with dining experiences at world-class restaurants. As you walk around Nantucket, you may even hear people refer to mainland USA as “America” — as if you’re in another country altogether.

Hungry for a taste? Here are 8 ways to truly savor the very best that this much-beloved (and very wealthy) island has to offer:

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Food From The Source

Where to Eat
Nestled along the Tidal Basin with a majestic view of the Jefferson Memorial, the MLK Memorial spans 4 acres in the quiet southwest corner of the National Mall. The remote site is suitable to a memorial of its style and size, but it’s also lacking in obvious places to eat when your out-of-town-guest’s (or your own) stomach starts growling. So before you visit, know your options.

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SXSW: Austin Food Scene

Austin’s SXSW festival isn’t just for music fans, interactive geeks and film snobs anymore; it’s also for foodies. There are dozens of food trucks set up along the streets, and the choices range from mild to wild. Festivalgoers can make a pit stop at Before The Cone food truck, which is set up outside the Convention Center, to pick up a waffle cone filled with bacon and a mixture of decadent ingredients.

If you’re looking for something a little tamer, then visit Short Bus Subs. These guys serve up deli, chicken and veggie sandwiches with unique names, including the “Hot For Teacher,” “Summer Vacation,” “The Cheerleader” and “The Pep Rally.”  And don’t be bashful, there are other food trucks to sample, including Mighty Cone, Flip Happy Crepes, Torchy’s Tacos and Hey Cupcake!

There are lots of opportunities for foodies to mix and mingle at SXSW. Food bloggers and Tweeters hold bleet-ups or tweet-ups to sample some of Austin’s offerings. The Big Texas Beer Tweet-up provided beer connoisseurs the opportunity to hang out and sample a variety of beers with local, self-proclaimed “Twunkards” (tweeting drunkards). Others joined the TacoJournalism’s Taco Mafia for breakfast tacos after a long night of SXSW parties.

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