New York, New York
A great new restaurant can be a fun experience. A best new restaurant announces itself as part of the national dining conversation. Each restaurant on this list does more than offer an exceptional meal, it also reflects something larger about the way we eat. It might set one trend in motion, or subvert another. It might bring attention to a previously unheralded cuisine or neighborhood, or revisit familiar genres in unexpected ways. But most of all, each is an original.
A reimagined New England diner with a decidedly quirky sensibility reflects and refracts our current infatuation with nostalgia. A playfully elegant French bistro shows us what a more quiet luxury would look like in the wake of the recent maximalist wave. A tasting menu that started as a pop-up, a barbecue joint you can only visit on Saturdays, a sophisticated restaurant tucked into a brewery, a daytime cafe that is also a marketplace — these thrilling newcomers also reflect lingering traces of nimble “pandemic pivots.”
Now more than ever, experimenting with menus, formats, hours, and business models is a vital part of operating and succeeding in the restaurant industry. As diners, we get to reap the delicious benefits of that creativity and exploration. If any city has embraced that spirit of culinary experimentation this year, it’s Philadelphia; you’ll notice that there are two Philly spots on our list. (It’s worth saying that even narrowing down the options to two involved much discussion and deliberation.) Philadelphia’s restaurant scene has what any diner wants: a tapestry of restaurants created by chefs and operators creating experiences so singular that they could only exist right there.
Together, Eater’s 12 Best New Restaurants represent the highest highs of the year in dining — loosely defined as October 2022 through September 2023 — as well as the promise of what’s to come next. Add each one of them to your must-try list, and keep a close eye on what they’re up to as they continue to set a new benchmark for dining in America. — Hillary Dixler Canavan
Providence, Rhode Island
San Francisco, California
Piglet & Co
Charleston, South Carolina
New Orleans, Louisianna
Barbs B Q