Bon Appétit’s Andrew Knowlton Names the 20 Most Important Restaurants in America

Chilling with his cook-off adversary, David Chang.

Chilling with his cook-off adversary, David Chang.

Here’s one to dig your teeth into: Bon Appétit resident restaurant guru Andrew Knowlton has taken on the task of choosing America’s most important restaurants.

A list like this needs some organizing principles, and Knowlton provides them in a related post: “This isn’t an All-Time Greatest list or a Hall of Fame. It’s a list of the spots where chefs want to eat today, the places on the forefront of what is happening in dining at this moment.” In other words, the places that capture the zeitgeist, spawn imitators, and get the gastronomes all hot and bothered.

Any card-carrying foodies will be familiar with many, if not all, of the names on the list: Sean Brock’s Husk, Danny Bowein’s Mission Chinese, Grant Achatz’s Alinea, and—spoiler alert!—David Chang’s Momofuku empire in that #1 Spot. With seven of 20 picks having a presence, there are sure to be some cries of bias. And while Balthazar and Swan’s Oyster Depot are undoubtedly awesome, they would seem to fall more into the G.O.A.T category than the so hot right now column, and feel like outliers.

At any rate, the massive feature offers a good overview of food-world hot spots you should know, and the video above provides a useful breakdown of the hard-to-leep-up-wth Momofuku brand, from its inception at Noodle Bar to its latest incarnations.

Whether this will be as controversial as our 20 Most Influential Beers of All-Time list is yet to be seen. Check it out let us know what you think is missing.

[via Bon Appetit]

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