This morning Bon Appétit named its fifty favorite new restaurants in the country. This list of finalists precedes its much-anticipated “Hot 10” list, which will come out on August 18. Four Texas restaurants made the top fifty: Dai Due and Gardner in Austin, and Luscher’s Red Hots and Small Brewpub in Dallas. Houston was shut out, a snub that will no doubt be noted by the food community of the biggest city in Texas.
As always, many of the Bon Appétit choices trend casual. As restaurant editor Andrew Knowlton wrote in 2012, “[The restaurants we like are] usually scrappy and personal, guided by chefs with a passion to create independently owned places they would want to eat at on their day off. As for what that style of restaurant looks, tastes, and sounds like, there are some common themes: husband-and-wife owners, small dining rooms and even smaller kitchens, no reservations and no tablecloths, counter-side seating around the open kitchen, tweezers in the kitchen, tattooed cooks, servers, and sommeliers, rough-hewn handmade plates, record players and random selections of vinyl in the dining room, and bargaine [sic] prix-fixe menus.”
Bon Appétit’s list started in 2009, to compete with Food & Wine’s highly regarded annual list of the ten best new chefs in the country, which has been going since 1988.
(image via Texas Monthly/Jody Horton)