Florida from The Best Food and Drink in Every State for 2018 Gallery

The Best Food and Drink in Every State for 2018 Gallery

Full Story

Photos modified: istockphoto.com/Dreamstime

The Best Food and Drink in Every State

How do you even begin to discuss the infinitely vast universe of food and drink that’s available across the 50 states? From the Florida Keys to the farthest reaches of Alaska, the culinary offerings you’ll find on a cross-country tour are as diverse as the states themselves. To celebrate the vast and varied smorgasbord of restaurants, bars, and breweries you’ll find from sea to shining sea, we’re proud to present our first-ever roundup of the best food and drink in all 50 states as well as the District of Columbia.

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Alabama

If you’ve ever traveled through the “Heart of Dixie” then you know it’s home to some amazing Southern comfort food. The fried chicken, apple pie, and ribs are almost unparalleled. But what you may not realize is that there is more to Alabama’s culinary landscape than meets the eye. Acclaimed chef Frank Stitt is responsible for some of the best Italian food in Alabama (including pizza and pasta) and some of the best French food (he serves up the absolute best burgers), as well as the most expensive restaurant in the state. There are tons of family-owned classics such as Loyless’ Doughnuts, Gus’s Hot Dogs, and many more!

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: Callaghan’s Irish Social Club in Mobile, where there’s great music, beer, and burgers
Best Burger: The hamburger at Chez Fonfon in Birmingham, with house-ground chuck, Comté, grilled red onion, lettuce, pickle, and tomato
Best Fried Chicken: At Birmingham’s Café Dupont, buttermilk-fried chicken is topped with a lemon basil sauce and served atop warm creamed potatoes
Best Hot Dog: Gus’ in Birmingham is one of the city’s last spots for an old-school Greek dog
Best Ribs: Big Bob Gibson’s in Decatur serves some of the best barbecue on earth

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Alabama 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Alaska

Sure, Alaska probably will never rank among the most boundary-pushing states from a culinary perspective, but there are quite a few quality meals to be found on the Last Frontier. Miles of coastline and plenty of wilderness set an ideal stage for local fish and meat dishes.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: Homer’s Salty Dog Saloon, which is located in one of the town’s original cabins
Best Pizza: Moose’s Tooth in Anchorage is creative and fun, and serves some truly great pizza
Best Seafood Shack: Juneau’s Hangar on the Wharf is also renowned for its jambalaya!
Best Soup: The smoked salmon chowder at Humpty’s in Anchorage can warm up the coldest Alaskan night
Best Steakhouse: Anchorage’s Simon & Seafort’s has been serving great steaks and prime rib since 1978

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Alaska 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Arizona

Arizona may be known as “The Copper State,” but its culinary landscape is pure gold. Cities like Phoenix and Tucson house some of the best spots for Mexican food in the country, like Barrio Café, Restaurant Atoyac Estilo Oaxaca, and Gadzooks Enchiladas & Soup. It’s also home to some killer Italian food, all from the mind of New York native Chris Bianco, who has brought his flavorful Italian pastas, pizzas, and sandwiches to the Southwest.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Chicken & Waffles: LoLo’s now has five locations in the state, and makes everything from scratch
Best Food Truck: Emerson Fry Bread in Phoenix serves Native American cuisine with a Mexican twist
Best Hot Dog: El Güero Canelo in Tuscon has been serving its signature Sonoran dogs for more than 40 years
Best Mexican Restaurant: Don’t miss the cochinita pibil at Phoenix’s Barrio Café
Best Sushi Bar: Roka Akor in Scottsdale flies in fresh fish daily, and serves a legendary omakase

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Arizona 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Arkansas

Though Arkansas is often overlooked as a food destination in the United States, the landlocked Southern state is hiding some epic eats. Bordered by the cultural and culinary hub of Louisiana and the Deep South languor of Mississippi — not to mention Oklahoma and Texas to the west, Tennessee to the east (with Memphis directly across the river), and Missouri to the north — Arkansas is a crossroads, and it boasts many of the delicious flavors that might more typically be associated with its neighbors.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: White Water Tavern in Little Rock is a perfect spot for a whiskey shot and beer
Best Farmers Market: The farmers market in Fayetteville has been called the town’s “crown jewel”
Best Pasta Dish: The lasagna at Little Rock’s nearly 70-year-old Bruno’s is loaded with Italian meats
Best Doughnuts: Mark’s in North Little Rock has been serving perfect and fresh doughnuts since 1978
Best Beer: Lost Forty’s Nighty Night is a big and bold imperial stout

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Arkansas 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

California

California is the nation’s breadbasket, and it’s also home to some amazing and legendary restaurants. It’s the home of the French Dip (invented at LA’s Philippe’s); it’s the home of the Mission Burrito (the best version of which can arguably be found at San Francisco’s La Taqueria); it’s the home of Napa Valley and its famed vineyards (some of which have a long road to recovery after the recent wildfires); it’s the home of trailblazing restaurants like Vespertine and Trois Mec and untouchable institutions like The French Laundry and Chez Panisse. We also can’t forget to mention the magical restaurants at Disneyland. And if there’s a new trend in health food (or beer!), it also most likely started in California.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Burger: Father’s Office in LA, where it’s topped with arugula, bacon, caramelized onion, Gruyère, and Maytag Blue
Best Dive Bar: Zeitgeist in San Francisco, with its legendary Bloody Marys
Best Fried Chicken: Roscoe’s House of Chicken & Waffles, going strong in several locations since 1975
Best Mexican Restaurant: Guelaguetza, which introduced LA to authentic Oaxacan cuisine in 1994
Best Steakhouse: CUT, Wolfgang Puck’s trailblazing shrine to steak in Beverly Hills

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in California 2018

Dreamstime (Green/Sandwich)_Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Colorado

Colorado is a stunning and serene state. The state’s food is rumored to be just as awe-inspiring as its scenic views, stretching from the culinary hotspot of Denver to the less populous regions near the mountains. While you’re skiing in this snowy state, make sure to take advantage of the myriad of dining opportunities residents have to offer. The state has doughnut delivery, damn good tacos, and some classier restaurants hiding in the depths of Colorado’s desert. Amidst the Rocky Mountains, you’ll find pockets of culinary prowess and delectable eats.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:

Best Burger: Steuben’s in Denver serves a mean green chile cheeseburger
Best Craft Brewery: Oskar Blues’ Dale’s Pale Ale was one of the first craft beers served in a can
Best Doughnuts: Aurora’s Glazed and Confused uses fresh and seasonal ingredients whenever possible
Best Hot Dogs: Biker Jim’s in Denver serves some of the most unique and delicious sausages in America
Best Italian Restaurant: Frasca in Boulder is a truly must-visit, the perfect special-occasion place
Best Steakhouse: Denver’s Buckhorn Exchange has been serving great steaks (from some exotic animals) since 1893

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Colorado 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Connecticut

Connecticut may not be the first state that comes to mind when folks start talking about matters gastronomical, but it actually has a lot going for it when it comes to food. To get specific, Connecticut stakes a claim to having been the birthplace of the hamburger, at the still-thriving Louis' Lunch in New Haven; New Haven is also pretty much the pizza capital of America, home to the ineffable Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana (not to mention such standard-bearers as Modern Apizza, Sally's Apizza, Ernie's, Zuppardi's, the Brü Room at BAR, and Mike's Apizza); and with its 96-mile coastline, Connecticut is a great place for seafood, too.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Dive Bar: In Hartford, The Spigot is beloved for its jukebox and well-worn vibe
Best Food Truck: The Caseus Cheese Truck serves some legendary grilled cheese sandwiches
Best Hot Dogs: Fairfield’s Super Duper Weenie serves spot-on versions of just about every regional dog
Best Pasta Dish: The lasagna served at New Haven legend Consiglio’s is nothing short of perfection
Best Sandwich: The hot lobster roll at Abbott’s in Noank can contain up to a full pound of fresh lobster, upon request

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Connecticut 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Delaware

The First State definitely doesn’t lack for dining options. Delaware’s mid-Atlantic location is perfect for seafood, and the fact that it’s snuggled between Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., means plenty of high-caliber chefs are able to set up shop at a slightly more reasonable rate. This narrow slip of a state sure packs a lot into its 35-mile width.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Craft Brewery: Milton’s Dogfish Head is one of the most lauded craft breweries on earth
Best Hot Dogs: Deerhead, in Wilmington and Newark, is renowned for its rich, thick meat sauce
Best Pasta Dish: The gnocchi Sorrentina at Newark’s La Casa Pasta has been a crown-pleaser since 1978
Best Sandwich: The roast pork sandwich at Ioannoni’s in New Castle can go head to head with any of Philly’s best
Best Steakhouse: The prime rib at Walter’s in Wilmington ranges in size from 10 to 34 ounces

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Delaware 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Florida

There’s more to Florida than the beach and Disney World — though, Disney has some outrageous food items of its own. Between the resorts, the Keys, and Florida’s other hot tourist spots, there are dozens of attractive cuisine options available. In addition to the places frequented by tourists, Floridians are hiding a few gems of their own as well.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Burger: Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink in Miami uses Black Angus beef from California’s Harris Ranch in their burgers
Best Craft Brewery: Tampa’s Cigar City is beginning to make waves across the USA
Best Pizza: Scuola Vecchia is serving 25 pies both creative and traditional in Delray Beach
Best Soup: On Key West, Conch Republic serves a legendary conch chowder
Best Sushi Bar: The eight-seat Naoe in Miami treats its customers like kings and queens

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Florida 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Georgia

We know the first food item that might pop in to your mind for Georgia: peaches. But there’s more to the Empire State of the South than those stone fruits. Although many of the top picks are in the capital, Atlanta, don’t overlook Savannah as a foodie destination. The heart of the Coastal Empire is giving Atlanta a culinary run for its money.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Burger: Atlanta’s Holeman & Finch is absolutely legendary, and a must-order
Best Chinese Restaurant: Oriental Pearl in Chamblee has been serving Authentic Chinese fare for more than 25 years
Best Doughnuts: Atlanta’s Sublime Doughnuts dominates the city’s doughnut scene
Best Irish Pub: Kevin Barry’s in Savannah is ground zero for the country’s largest St. Paddy’s Day celebration
Best Steakhouse: Kevin Rathbun Steak is making Atlanta’s Inman Park a dining destination

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Georgia 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Hawaii

You already know that Hawaii is wonderful. It is considered to be one of the dream vacation destinations for people all over the world. Films have been made dedicated to its lush flora, fauna, and oceanic landscapes. It’s the birthplace of countless national treasures ranging from Hawaii 5-0 to Hawaiian sovereignty activist Israel Kamakawiwoʻole to former President Barack Obama. It’s also home to some truly amazing food, especially seafood.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: Mai Tai Bar is Honolulu serves laid-back Tiki-style classics as well as some wonderful food
Best Food Truck: Giovanni’s Shrimp Truck in Oahu serves shrimp in several styles, and they’re all fresh and tasty
Best Hot Dog: Puka Dogs are tucked into whole loaves of bread and filled with creative toppings, and there’s nothing quite like them
Best Steakhouse: Hy’s in Honolulu is a 35-year-old legend, where steaks are grilled over kiawe (mesquite) wood
Best Sushi: Honolulu’s Sushi Sasabune may be rustic, but it’s 13-course omakase is life-changing

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Hawaii 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Idaho

Unbeknownst to many, Idaho is one of the culinary gems of the Pacific Northwest. Although the state is mainly known for its potatoes and even has an entire museum dedicated to the spud, Idaho has a lot more to offer than just starch.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: Pengilly’s in Boise has been going strong since 1976, and has a great early 1900s vibe
Best Doughnuts: Guru Doughnuts in Boise uses local flour to create spectacular doughnuts
Best Tacos: Boise’s Tim Roof Tacos is full of Tex-Mex charm, and even makes tortillas to order
Best Soup: A Street Soup Market in Idaho Falls has a menu of fresh-made soups that changes daily
Best Pizza: Guido’s is bringing a little bit of New York City to Boise

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Idaho 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Illinois

Whether you refer to it as the “Land of Lincoln” or as “the Prairie State,” you have to admit — Illinois cannot be beat. Whether you’re looking for waving expanses of corn, suburban grottos, or a bustling city, Illinois has it all. While restaurant powerhouse Chicago hosts such crown jewels as Grant Achatz’s The Aviary and Alinea, Brendan Sodikoff’s Au Cheval, and Maurie Berman’s legacy Superdawg, southern and central Illinois are home to some of the country’s best chili, ribs, and even spaghetti and meatballs.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Burger: The beauty of the burger served at Au Cheval lies in its simplicity, and crowds line up for it on a daily basis
Best Chili: Springfield’s The Chili Parlor has been making bowls of chili to order since 1945
Best Hot Dog: Chicago’s Superdawg serves a perfect version of the famed Chicago-style dog
Best Italian Restaurant: Tony Mantuano’s Spiaggia is a fine dining institution, and is completely unique
Best Ribs: Mike and Amy Mills are creating world-champion barbecue at Marion’s 17th Street BBQ
Best Taco: At Chicago’s Birrieria Zaragoza, they’re slowly roasting goat according to a recipe that’s over 100 years old

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Illinois 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Indiana

In Indiana, there’s never a shortage of sports events to watch, but while Indiana does have some of the best sports bars in America, it has lots of non-sports-inspired fare, as well. And in the two metropolises of the otherwise farm-dominated state, Indianapolis and Fort Wayne, there are many impressive and delectable dishes.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Burger: Workingman’s Friend has been serving perfect old-fashioned burgers to Indianapolis regulars since 1918
Best Craft Brewery: Three Floyds, based in Munster, is just as known for its creative bottle design as its beer
Best Fried Chicken: At Hollyhock Hill in Indianapolis, the recipe for “Hoosier pan-fried chicken” hasn’t changed since 1928
Best Pasta Dish: The spaghetti and meatballs at Mama Carolla’s in Indianapolis are just about perfect
Best Dive Bar: Indianapolis’ Red Key Tavern is a little quirky and perfect for a low-key beer

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Indiana 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Iowa

Located in the heart of the Midwest, Iowa residents love all the classic comfort foods America has to offer. And while it’s the country’s leading producer of corn, just because their economy is kept afloat on corn’s kernels doesn’t mean that it’s all they eat. You won’t find many health foods within Iowa’s borders — but you will find farm-fresh dishes and creative comfort classics.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Chili: At George the Chili King, a Des Moines standby since 1952, you’ll still find George behind the counter spooning up his famous chili
Best Dive Bar: Deadwood Tavern in Iowa City is a great, no-frills hangout for locals and college students
Best Sandwich: The “loosemeat” at Taylor’s Made-Rite in Marshalltown is a legendary regional specialty
Best French Fries: At Django in Des Moines, the fries are hand-cut and fried in duck fat, and they’re spectacular
Best Steakhouse: The finest Iowa beef is on full display at The Big Steer in Altoona

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Iowa 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Kansas

Kansas has no single culinary center, so to get the full tour of the state’s best food, you need to go on a road trip. Start off in the Kansas side of Kansas City for some doughnuts at Hana’s Donuts, then continue your day in Topeka for the Downtown Topeka Farmers Market, where you can buy locally-sourced produce and crafts for a successful morning. Don’t forget lunch at AJ’s NY Pizzeria, of course. Then hop in your car and cruise all the way down to Wichita for the finest dining in Kansas at Scotch & Sirloin.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: Johnny’s Tavern in Lawrence has been a must-visit since 1953, and it also happens to serve some surprisingly great pizza
Best Burger: Cozy Inn in Salina dates from 1922, and still serves spot-on sliders
Best Fried Chicken: Chicken Annie’s in Pittsburg has been serving legendary fried chicken since 1934
Best Italian Restaurant: Wichita’s Albero Café offers spot-on Italian specialties as well as plenty of creative options
Best Sandwich: The pulled pork at Oklahoma Joe’s in Kansas City is life-changing

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Kansas 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Kentucky

Kentucky is known as the Bluegrass State, a name that references the grass found in many of its lush pastures due to the fertile soil. The landscape is diverse, with mountains, hills, and broad river valleys, the world’s longest cave system (Mammoth Cave National Park), and the greatest length of navigable waterways and streams in the U.S. all found within the state. Natural beauty aside, the Kentucky is also home to many culinary attractions (it is the birth place of the old fashioned and home to the hot brown after all).

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: It’s said that F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote some of The Great Gatsby at The Old Seelbach Bar in Louisville, and it’s a classy bar with great cocktails
Best Cupcakes: BabyCakes Cupcakes in Lexington is run by a husband-and-wife team, and the variety and quality is astounding
Best Fried Chicken: The big fried wings at Shirley Mae’s in Louisville are made by Shirley Mae herself
Best Sandwich: Louisville’s Brown Hotel invented the Kentucky Hot Brown in 1926, and it’s still the best place to order it
Best Steakhouse: The steaks at Malone’s in Lexington are shipped in from Chicago, and the steak and potato soup is a must-order

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Kentucky 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Louisiana

Barbecue shrimp, po’boys, jambalaya, gumbo, crawfish étouffée, beignets, muffuletta, red beans and rice… These are some of the most delicious dishes on earth, and while you can probably find serviceable variations outside of Louisiana, they’ll never be as good as the real deal, served at legendary institutions like Brennan’s, Commander’s Palace, Galatoire’s, Dooky Chase, and Tujague’s. But there’s a lot more than Cajun and Creole food to be discovered in Louisiana.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Burger: Company Burger in New Orleans, where the double cheeseburger is just about perfect
Best Food Truck: La Cocinita, which roams New Orleans serving top-notch Mexican street food
Best Fried Chicken: Willie Mae’s Scotch House, which very well might be the very best fried chicken in America
Best Best Pasta Dish: Potato gnocchi with creamy Parmigiano-Reggiano sauce, chunks of fresh Gulf blue crab, and shavings of fresh black truffle at New Orleans’ August
Best Seafood Shack: Big John’s Seafood Patio in Erath, one of the best places on earth for crawfish

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Louisiana 2018

 

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Maine

Maine is undeniably the perfect spot to enjoy fresh seafood, juicy lobster, and bursting blueberries. However, the easternmost state in the U.S. is also home to many restaurants and bars specializing in far more than just stereotypical Maine fare.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: Ebenezer’s in small Lovell, which has a whopping 35 Belgian beers on tap
Best Chinese Restaurant: Empire in Portland specializes in dim sum and traditional Chinese soul food
Best Hot Dogs: Simone’s in Lewiston has been selling its unique hot dogs since 1908
Best Sandwich: The lobster roll at Red’s Eats in Wiscasset is the standard by which all others are judged
Best French Fries: At Duckfat in Portland, local potatoes are fried in duck fat and served with eight dipping sauces

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Maine 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Maryland

When you ask someone what the best food in Maryland is, everyone’s go-to answer is the blue crab. Encrusted in Old Bay Seasoning, steamed, sautéed, or crafted into a cake, blue crab from Maryland has adopted many forms. However, there are more delicacies than that to enjoy in Maryland — if you know where to look.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Chinese Restaurant: Peter Chang’s China Café in Rockville, where a wide variety of Chinese specialties are prepared with care
Best Craft Brewery: The Flying Dog Brewery in Frederick produces 100,000 barrels of unique and delicious beer annually
Best French Fries: Thrasher’s in Ocean City serves fries by the bucket, and famously offers cider vinegar instead of ketchup
Best Pizza: Johnny Rad’s in Baltimore, a casual skater hangout with some seriously creative and delicious pies
Best Sandwich: The pit beef at Chaps in Baltimore is one of the best roast beef sandwiches you’ll every eat

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Maryland 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Massachusetts

Massachusetts is the most populous state in New England — and over 80 percent of that massive population hails from the Greater Boston area. It’s no surprise that the food scene in Boston (and its surrounding cities) is so stellar. Outside of Boston, Massachusetts is well-known for its incredible shellfish and (of course) clam chowder.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Beer: Boston’s Trillium produces some amazing IPAs, but their Double Dry Hopped Congress Street takes the cake
Best Burger: At Cambridge’s Craigie on Main, the burger is topped with Shelburne Farm Vermont Cheddar, vinaigrette-dressed lettuce and tomato, and house-made ketchup
Best Irish Pub: Cambridge’s Plough and Stars, which is warm and cozy, and serves great food
Best Italian Restaurant: At Boston’s Scampo, chef Lydia Shire isn’t afraid to incorporate things like Spanish ibèrico ham into her mix of spot-on Italian classics
Best Pizza: Santarpio’s in Boston has been going strong since 1903, and serves slightly chewy and satisfyingly wet slices

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Massachusetts 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Michigan

When you travel through Michigan, you won’t just find the Great Lakes, you’ll also find great cuisine. Michigan hosts some of America’s very best restaurants, some of this country’s very best craft breweries (including Bell’s, Founders, and Dark Horse), and great barbecue, cocktails, and even cupcakes. If that’s not enough to whet your appetite, we’re not sure what else will get the job done.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Burger: The quirky Redamak’s in New Buffalo, which tops their skillet-seared burgers with an ample dose of Velveeta
Best Craft Brewery: Bell’s in Kalamazoo has been turning out inspired brews since 1985
Best Fried Chicken: Zehnder’s is a 1,500-seat Frankenmuth institution, and its fried chicken is — wait for it — all you can eat
Best Hot Dog: Detroit is famous for its chili-topped coneys, and our tip of the hat goes to the famed Lafayette Coney Island
Best Sandwich: Zingermann’s is an Ann Arbor institution, and the Reuben is its signature sandwich

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Michigan 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Minnesota

Minnesotans are perhaps best known for their niceness, a trait supposedly derived from the Gopher State’s nineteenth-century Nordic settlers. This benign pleasantness is reflected in many of the foods typically associated with the state, often warm, comforting casseroles or rich cheeses from the Land of 10,000 Lakes’ productive dairy farms. But the North Star State has a bright culinary scene featuring styles both traditionally Minnesotan and less so.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Burger: If you’re looking for a true Jucy Lucy (a burger stuffed with cheese), Matt’s Bar in Minneapolis is the place to go
Best Cupcake: A small Eagan cupcakery named, well, Cupcake achieved plenty of local renown after (rightfully) winning an episode of Food Network’s Cupcake Wars
Best French Fries: At Meritage in St. Paul, the fries are perfectly cooked, and a side of béarnaise definitely helps
Best Italian Restaurant: At Broder’s Pasta Bar in Minneapolis, fresh pastas are made in-house and dry pastas are imported from Italy; nearly 30 pastas and risottos are on the menu
Best Steakhouse: Murray’s in Minneapolis, which has been serving its famed Silver Butter Knife Steak for Two since 1946

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Minnesota 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Mississippi

The American South is known for its grandiose hospitality, perhaps nowhere more so than in Mississippi. The place is so friendly that it calls itself the Hospitality State — Mississippians know how to welcome guests into their homes. They also know how to welcome guests at the state’s many excellent restaurants, bars, and barbecue joints.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Chinese Restaurant: Mr. Chen’s in Jackson offers a surprisingly wide array of traditional Chinese specialties, and even offers Peking ducks to take home
Best Dive Bar: Gil’s Fish Camp in Ocean Springs is a laid-back beach-hut bar with cheap booze, tasty crawfish, and a splendid waterfront view
Best Fried Chicken: Lorman’s Old Country Store reportedly serves Alton Brown’s favorite fried chicken, and it’s well seasoned and super-crispy
Best Italian Restaurant: Located inside Biloxi’s Beau Rivage Resort & Casino, Stalla is an unpretentious Italian spot specializing in traditional Italian fare prepared with quality ingredients
Best Ribs: Ocean Springs’ The Shed is an award-winning barbecue joint, and pitmaster Brad Orrison smokes his ribs low and slow with pecan wood

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Mississippi 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Missouri

The Show Me State is often derided as one of the flyover states, but there’s so much to explore. Anchored by two metropolises at either end of I-70 (Kansas City and St. Louis), the state also features homey dives and friendly local spots like Lambert’s. From the patchwork suburbs of the Gateway to the West to one of the great barbecue pilgrimages in Kansas City, the dining in the state has been growing by leaps and bounds in recent years.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Burger: Winstead’s has been serving great burgers in Kansas City for more than 70 years, and the double is perfection
Best Chili: Dixon’s in Independence has been around since 1919, and serves chili “dry,” “juicy,” or “soupy,” and with plenty of topping options
Best Craft Brewery: Kansas City’s Boulevard has had a stellar reputation since owner John McDonald delivered his first keg of pale ale in 1989
Best Homemade Ravioli: St. Louis’ best fried (or “toasted”) ravioli is served at Lombardo’s, where they’re made from scratch
Best Sandwich: The Gerber, a type of open-faced ham sandwich, is a regional specialty, and it was invented at Ruma’s Deli in St. Louis

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Missouri 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Montana

From Kalispell to Billings, Montana is full of delicious dishes, many of them inspired by nature. Big Sky Country offers more than just breathtaking wilderness: Its natural bounty includes huckleberries, chokecherries, trout, bison, and some of the finest beef in the country.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Beer: Big Sky Brewing Company’s Ivan the Terrible is a thick, dense Russian imperial stout, but don’t think that means it’s difficult to drink
Best Doughnuts: Granny’s in Bozeman, which makes them fresh throughout the day
Best Italian Restaurant: Lucca’s in Helena is elegant and refined, with expertly prepared Italian fare from chef-owner Frederick Stout
Best Pizza: The incredibly popular Eugene’s in Glasgow, which has been drawing in crowds since 1962
Best Sandwich: Pork Chop John’s in Butte has been serving its famous pounded, breaded, and fried pork chop sandwich since 1924

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Montana 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Nebraska

Food in the Cornhusker State is about more than just one of America’s greatest staple grains. While it’s true that Nebraska is the nation’s third largest producer of corn, the state is an agricultural powerhouse in general and a leading producer of everything from hogs, eggs, and dairy to wheat, dry beans, and sugar beets. Nebraskans have turned this natural wealth into a host of great foods, served at some fantastic restaurants.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: Omaha’s Homy Inn is indeed quite homey, drawing in regulars for its Champagne on tap since 1956
Best Fried Chicken: The Alpine Inn in Omaha has been serving its spectacular fried half chickens with potato wedges to locals for more than 40 years
Best Italian Restaurant: Omaha’s Spezia offers a wide variety of antipasti, flatbreads, salads, pastas, wood-grilled and oven-roasted specialties, and Angus steaks
Best Sandwich: Nebraska is the home base of Runza, a chain that sells long rolls stuffed with meat, cheese, and other fillings of the same name; they’re delicious
Best Soup: Bread and Cup in Lincoln’s Haymarket offers different soups daily, and they’re always made with care and great ingredients

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Nebraska 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Nevada

The dazzling lights of Las Vegas can’t dull the shine of the standout restaurants, bakeries, bars, and taco joints of Nevada. Sure, many people travel through this desert state to play the slots and see the shows, but what they really should be doing is eating!

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: Vesper Bar inside the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas is an example of modern sophistication with firm roots in the elegance of the past
Best Burger: Hubert Keller’s eponymous burger at his Vegas Burger Bar is a bison patty topped with caramelized onion, wilted baby spinach, and blue cheese, served on a ciabatta bun with red wine shallot sauce
Best Inexpensive Steakhouse: At DeSimone’s in Henderson, a 14-ounce rib-eye costs just $26
Best Italian Restaurant: Vegas’ Costa di Mare spares no expense in its ingredient sourcing, flying in fish from Italian coastal waters daily
Best Tacos: Head away from the Strip and head to Taco y Taco for the best tacos in the state, where you’ll have your pick from all the traditional Mexican classics

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Nevada 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

New Hampshire

Located in the heart of the Northeast, New Hampshire is lush with lobster, crab, and other beautiful seafood, even though it’s almost entirely landlocked. Manchester and Concord both feature a vibrant food scene and have attracted chefs and drink experts from around the world. While there is a huge variety in the types of foods you’ll find served in New Hampshire, you can bet on traditional inclusions of cheese, apples, and maple syrup derived from its rich history of local sourcing and farming.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: Portsmouth’s Portsmouth Brewery isn’t just New Hampshire’s best bar, it’s also its first brewpub, open since 1991
Best Chinese Restaurant: Crowds flock to Golden Tao in Manchester for its well-made Americanized Chinese fare and weekend dim sum brunch
Best Italian Restaurant: Tuscan Kitchen in Salem and Portsmouth brings Tuscan sunshine to the Granite State with plenty of authentic Italian dishes
Best Pizza: The Tilton House of Pizza, which has been serving thick-crusted pies loaded with cheese, homemade sauce, and fresh vegetables
Best Seafood Shack: Brown’s Lobster Pound in Seabrook has been serving locals what is said to be the state’s best lobster and freshest catch since 1950.

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in New Hampshire 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

New Jersey

New Jersey is called the Garden State for a reason: Much of the state is lush and verdant. According to Jersey Fresh, the state is home to 9,000 farms covering 720,000 acres, and food and agriculture is Jersey’s third-largest industry. Not only do New Jersey farms produce more than 100 kinds of fruits and vegetables, the state is also home to some great places to eat and drink.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Burger: White Manna in Hackensack, with its legendary sliders
Best Doughnuts: Uncle Dood’s in Toms River, with its creative toppings like vanilla frosting and Fruity Pebbles
Best Sandwich: Atlantic City’s renowned White House Subs, and its famed Italian, with Genoa salami, provolone, ham, and capicola
Best Steakhouse: The River Palm Terrace, where all beef is USDA Prime and dry aged for 28 days
Best Sushi Bar: Jersey City’s Honshu, which has been serving high-quality fresh fish for 10 years

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in New Jersey 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

New Mexico

New Mexico is nicknamed “The Land of Enchantment” for its natural beauty and rich history, including its bewitchingly good food. Just because you’re going to have to decide between red or green chile sauces everywhere you go in New Mexico doesn’t mean you also have to debate where the best spot in town to grab lunch is — we at The Daily Meal have done that work for you.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: Not only does Tiny’s in Santa Fe have a vast selection of good beers, it also serves some mean Frito pie and chile relleno
Best Burger: The green chile cheeseburger at Santa Fe Bite is one of the state’s true culinary claims to fame
Best Farmers Market: The Farmers’ and Crafts Market of Las Cruces has been serving the community for more than 40 years, and has more than 300 vendors
Best Mexican Restaurant: El Modelo is an Albuquerque institution, tracing its roots to 1929
Best Soup: The green chile stew at Santa Fe institution The Shed is made with potatoes, lean pork, and plenty of roasted local Hatch chiles

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in New Mexico 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

New York

Any conversation about the cuisine of New York state will be dominated by that of New York City, which very well might be the greatest food city in America, and possibly on the planet. Whatever you want, you can find it there. Not only does New York have pizza, bagels, and Jewish deli fare to claim as its own, it also has upscale, downscale, highbrow, lowbrow, insanely cheap, jaw-droppingly expensive, hidden gems, world-renowned institutions… the list goes on. But there’s a lot more to New York state than New York City, from the great seafood on Long Island to the unique culinary ecosystem of the Buffalo region.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Craft Brewery: Lakewood’s Southern Tier Brewing Company, with creative beers including the Nu Skool IPA and a play on Thin Mints called Thick Mint
Best Fried Chicken: Pies ‘n’ Thighs in Brooklyn, with its heavily seasoned crust and great biscuits on the side
Best Italian Restaurant: Del Posto, which was the first Italian restaurant to pick up four stars from the New York Times in decades
Best Mexican Restaurant: Cosme, chef Enrique Olvera’s upscale Manhattan game-changer
Best Seafood Shack: The Clam Bar at Napeague, serving fresh seafood from Montauk since 1981

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in New York 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

North Carolina

The Tar Heel State is a land of contrasts, stretching from the East Coast’s highest peak, Mount Mitchell, through the Piedmont and Coastal Plain to the shifting dunes of the Outer Banks. That same diversity shines through in the state’s cuisine, and that holds true for more than just barbecue — though some North Carolinians would probably be willing to fight you over the best way to baste a hog at a pig pickin’.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Beer: Wicked Weed’s Red Angel, a sour beer aged in red wine barrels and soaked in raspberries
Best Burger: At Chuck’s in Raleigh, the Dirty South Burger is topped with pulled pork, chili, fried onions, roasted tomato malt vinegar slaw, Cheddar, and yellow mustard
Best Doughnuts: From May to September since 1939, crowds have flocked to Britt’s in Carolina Beach for the plain glazed doughnut
Best Fried Chicken: Beasley’s Chicken + Honey in Raleigh is steamed, pressure-fried, and drizzled with honey
Best Sandwich: If you want to experience the unique Lexington-style barbecue, get yourself a chopped pork sandwich from Lexington Barbecue in Lexington!

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in North Carolina 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

North Dakota

The Roughrider State may have a far-flung population of less than a million people, but there are great restaurants and bars to be found, especially in the major metropolitan areas: Grand Forks, Bismarck, and Fargo.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: The Parrot’s Cay in Grand Forks is just a great place to hang out, and its beer and wings are top-notch
Best Doughnuts: Doughnuts at Sandy’s Donuts in Fargo are made fresh, and are available creatively decorated as Oscar the Grouch and Cookie Monster
Best Italian Restaurant: Toscana in Fargo is upscale and authentic, thanks to its Lucca-born chef
Best Soup: Knoephla is a German-influenced creamy chicken and potato soup that’s popular in North Dakota, and Kroll’s Diner in Bismarck does it best
Best Steakhouse: Bone-in rib-eyes at 40 Steak & Seafood in Bismarck are dry aged for 90, 150, or 260 days

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in North Dakota 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Ohio

Ohio likes to call itself “the heart of it all,” and that’s not just because of its shape. The Midwestern state truly is a cross-section of the entire United States. It has rolling hills of farmland, booming metropolis cities, plenty of all-American suburban neighborhoods, and everything in between. There’s a reason why it’s the ultimate swing state; Ohio has all walks of life within its borders, and that makes for a fascinating and diverse food personality.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Chili: Camp Washington has been serving Cincinnati’s signature chili since 1940, and even has a James Beard Award
Best Dive Bar: Dick’s Den in Columbus is no-frills, welcoming, and even offers live jazz
Best Fried Chicken: Belgrade Gardens in Barberton serves its fried chicken Serbian-style, meaning fresh, fried in lard, and unseasoned (but don’t let that put you off)
Best Mexican Restaurant: At Barrio in Cleveland, guests can build their own tacos from a wide variety of fillings and creative toppings
Best Seafood Shack: Jolly Rogers Seafood House in Port Clinton has Lake Erie’s finest yellow perch and walleye, along with onion rings and jumbo shrimp

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Ohio 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Oklahoma

The Sooner State is home to some excellent burgers, steak, and chili, as well as plenty of other culinary gems.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Burger: Grab a seat at the counter in the diminutive Nic’s Grill on Oklahoma City and watch chef-owner Justin “Nic” Nicholas work his burger magic
Best Chili: Ike’s in Tulsa serves chili that’s all-beef, spicy, and hearty, and it once claimed Will Rogers as a regular
Best Dive Bar: Grady’s is located on Route 66 in Yukon, and has everything you look for in a dive bar
Best Italian Restaurant: The elegant Stella in Oklahoma City serves great pizza, osso bucco, and pastas
Best Steakhouse: Cattleman’s Steakhouse in Oklahoma City has been serving superb steaks for more than 100 years

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Oklahoma 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Oregon

Oregon is as well-known for its incredible local ingredients as it is for its stunning natural beauty. The Beaver State is famous for Willamette Valley wine, coffee (Portland ranks among the top coffee cities in the world), local dairy artisanal cheese, craft beer… The list could go on and on.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Beer: Deschutes The Abyss, from Bend, was the 2016 winner of America’s Best Imperial Stout by the World Beer Awards
Best Burger: Le Pigeon in Portland serves one of the best burgers on Earth, and it starts with a thick square patty from a local farm
Best Fried Chicken: The folks at Portland’s People’s Pig smoke their chicken before frying it, and it’s a dreamy combo of barbecue and fried chicken
Best Sandwich: The Maple at Portland’s Meat Cheese Bread is two slices of French toast with sausage, cheddar, and shaved fennel inside
Best Seafood Shack: The Original Mo’s in Newport will make you question New England’s claim to clam chowder

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Oregon 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania is at a bit of a cultural crossroads. On one hand, you have the backbone of this country, the blue collar workers, and on the other hand, you have the growing metropolises of Pittsburgh and Philadelphia quickly drawing in millennials and developing into what some anticipate will be “the next Brooklyn.” Thus, Philly is a bit of a growing culinary hotspot, thanks in large part to its stellar bars, such as Monk’s Café and world-class restaurants like Barclay Prime and Zahav. But don’t think that means Philadelphia or Pennsylvania as a whole are becoming pretentious.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Burger: The Whiskey King burger at Philly’s Village Whiskey is topped with maple bourbon-glazed cipollini onions, blue cheese, applewood-smoked bacon, and foie gras for good measure
Best Craft Brewery: Victory Brewing Company in Downington is one of the country’s most acclaimed breweries, and its Hop Devil IPA is especially renowned
Best Hot Dogs: Coney Island Lunch in Scranton has been serving its signature chili-topped dogs since 1923
Best Italian Restaurant: At Philadelphia’s Vetri, chef Marc Vetri offers diners sophisticated, hand-crafted Italian and Italianate specialties, served only in the form of six-course, $155 tasting menus
Best Sandwich: No, it’s not a cheesesteak: It’s the thin-sliced roast pork from DiNic’s in Philly, dripping with juices and topped with provolone and broccoli rabe

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Pennsylvania 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Rhode Island

Like much of New England, Rhode Island is famous for its seafood. It’s called the Ocean State for a reason — featuring 400 miles of coastline, Rhode Island attracts fishermen and seafood chefs from far and wide. Its vibrant foodie scene has transformed Little Rhody into a big personality. The many food traditions of Rhode Island have baffled many with their ability to thrive there and stay there — despite the limited room for expansion. Few foods invented and perfected in Rhode Island have stretched past the state’s borders, instead concentrating into a vibrant food culture that’s filled with pride.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: Cook & Brown Public House in Providence is a classy New England-inspired gastropub with an especially great selection of brown spirits
Best Doughnuts: People come from far and wide for the doughnuts at Allie’s in North Kingstown, or to buy a doughnut cake for a party
Best Italian Restaurant: Al Forno in Providence doesn’t just serve spectacular pasta, it’s also the birthplace of grilled pizza
Best Lobster Roll: Champlin’s in Narragansett has been serving simple and perfect lobster rolls since 1944
Best Soup: The scallop chowder at The Mooring in Newport is loaded with scallops and kicked up with white wine, plenty of fresh dill, and corn

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Rhode Island 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

South Carolina

The Palmetto State — in particular its Lowcountry coast and its oldest city, Charleston — is known for its rich food traditions. These stem from the state’s access to the sea and the bounteous hinterlands of the Piedmont and Upstate, as well as Charleston’s long history of international commerce — the city has been one of North America’s important entrepôts for trans-Atlantic shipping from its founding up to the present.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Beer: Westbrook’s Mexican Cake contains cocoa nibs, vanilla beans, and a hint of cinnamon and habanero
Cheeseburger: The cheeseburger at Charleston’s Husk has bacon ground into the two patties, and is topped with American cheese, shaved white onions, bread-and-butter pickles, and a "special sauce"
Best Macaroni and Cheese: Mt. Pleasant’s Crave Kitchen & Cocktails’ mac and cheese is cavatappi with 10-year-aged California Cheddar, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and mozzarella
Best Ribs: At Sweatman’s in Holly Hill, ribs (and whole hogs) are slow-smoked over oak, hickory, and pecan woods
Best Sandwich: At Charleston’s legendary Hominy Grill, the Charleston Nasty Biscuit is cut in half and filled with a fried chicken breast, melted cheese, and a big ladle of sausage gravy

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in South Carolina 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

South Dakota

South Dakota is one of the top family travel destinations in the country. Mount Rushmore, Wall Drug, the Corn Palace, and the Black Hills all make for lasting family memories. And with all those tourists clogging I-90 between Souix Falls and Rapid City, they’re going to have to find a few places to eat.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: The Full Throttle Saloon in Sturgis isn’t just a bar; it’s an experience
Best Doughnuts: Jerry’s in Rapid City sells some delicious and creative doughnuts, including one made with Oreos
Best Italian Restaurant: Botticelli in Rapid City is family-owned, and has been going strong for 20 years
Best Pizza: Thatzza Pizza in Aberdeen is turning out some truly fantastic slices, custom pizzas in four sizes, and creative pre-designed specialty pies
Best Steakhouse: Cattleman’s Club in Pierre goes through an average of 60,000 pounds of USDA Choice beef a year, and is located on an expansive tract of land overlooking the Missouri River

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in South Dakota 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Tennessee

Tennessee is not only the epicenter for country music; it’s also home to some of the best country cooking and Southern staples in America. From Memphis to Nashville, Tennesseans and visitors alike are quick to tell you that the Volunteer State doesn’t mess around when it comes to food.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: Home of traditional country music, hillbilly, and rockabilly, Robert’s Western World in Nashville is a legendary honky-tonk
Best Burger: The Soul Burger at Earnestine & Hazel’s in Memphis is thin and perfectly seared; its given a couple squirts of Worcestershire-kicked sauce as it cooks and served on a soft white bun
Best Fried Chicken: The fried chicken at Gus’ in Mason is worth the wait — it’s crispy, juicy, and kicked with plenty of cayenne
Best Italian Restaurant: Andrew Michael in Memphis serves high-end Italian fare as well as recipes inspired by the owners’ grandmothers
Best Restaurant: Walland’s The Barn at Blackberry Farm is so legendary that it coined a new culinary term: Foothills Cuisine

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Tennessee 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Texas

Don’t mess with Texas, especially when it comes to food. The second largest state in the U.S. by land area is the originator of Tex-Mex cuisine, is at the forefront of food truck technology and mobile culinary acumen, and is home to some incredible steak. But people visiting Texas for the first time may be shocked to also find excellent seafood, sushi, and even Italian food in the Lone Star State.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Burger: At Dallas’ Maple & Motor, the half-pound patty is griddled and topped with mustard, lettuce, red onion, and dill pickle
Best Dive Bar: Ginny’s Little Longhorn Saloon in Austin is nothing short of iconic
Best Mexican Restaurant: At Hugo’s in Houston, chef Hugo Ortega cooks food that’s elegant, inventive, and inspiring
Best Ribs: The beef ribs, spare ribs, and the newer baby back ribs at the renowned Louie Mueller in Taylor are worth seeking out
Best Steakhouse: If you’re in Dallas or Houston and you find yourself in need of a perfect steak, a red leather booth, wood-paneled walls, and a wine list that boasts about 2,300 options, head over to Pappas Bros

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Texas 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Utah

Utah is known for the Olympics-worthy Wasatch and Uinta mountain ranges, the Great Salt Lake, and some of the most stunning national parks in the country, including Zion, Arches, and Bryce Canyon. But the Beehive State is buzzing with culinary wonders as well: Heber Valley artisanal cheese, Bear Lake raspberries, and Mile High biscuits.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: The world’s only ski-in gastro-distillery, High West Distillery & Saloon in Park City is all about the whiskey.
Best Italian Restaurant: Valter’s in Salt Lake City serves amazing fresh pastas and other Italian fare both creative and authentic
Best Mexican Restaurant: Try one of the six different handmade moles at the family-owned Red Iguana in Salt Lake City, open since 1985
Best Steakhouse: Jeffrey’s in Moab is warm and inviting, and only serves beef from a Nebraska farm
Best Farmers Market: Vendors come from all over the state to the massive Salt Lake City Downtown Farmers Market, going strong since 1992

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Utah 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Vermont

Vermont may be small and the farms might be even smaller, but the people of Vermont are strong, independent, and not to be trifled with. The tough and ever-changing land of steep hills and rocky soil has forced Vermont residents to reinvent the state’s food and drink industry time and time again, most recently by devoting efforts to growing some of the country’s best local produce.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Beer: The Alchemist’s flagship IPA, Heady Topper, is floral, complex, and a force to be reckoned with
Best Chinese Restaurant: Burlington’s A Single Pebble serves stunning Chinese food, and its shiitake-based “mock eel” claims Alton Brown as a fan
Best French Fries: Al’s French Frys in Burlington has a great 1950s vibe, and its fries are hand cut and double-fried
Best Pizza: At Pizzeria Verita in Burlington, pizzas are made in the traditional Neapolitan style, cooked in a 900-degree Acunto oven
Best Taco: Located in a quiet corner of central Vermont called Waitsfield, The Mad Taco is serving wildly good tacos and craft beer to crowds of thankful locals

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Vermont 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Virginia

Virginia is for lovers… especially food and drink lovers. From the Chesapeake Bay to the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia is bursting with local delicacies, historic foods, and incredible wine.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Chinese Restaurant: A banquet hall in the style of Beijing’s grand eateries, the Peking Gourmet Inn in Falls Church roasts one killer Peking duck — and certainly the best in the D.C. area
Best Dive Bar: Lynnhaven Pub is a dark, dank hole-in-the-wall in Virginia Beach with a surprisingly incredible craft beer can selection
Best Hot Dog: The legendary dogs at Ridgeway’s Martinsville Speedway have been served for more than 60 years in the same way: a soft bun, slaw, cheese, hand-chopped onions, and a secret-recipe chili, wrapped in waxed paper.
Best Italian Restaurant: At Richmond’s Graffiato, the menu focuses on seasonal small plates, vegetables, pizzas, and pastas, all expertly prepared
Best Steakhouse: At Arlington’s Ray’s The Steaks, steaks are dry-aged for 45 days before being hand-trimmed, seasoned with their signature rub, and grilled over an open flame

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Virginia 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Washington

Sure, Washington might be known for Mount St. Helens, grunge, rainy days, and Amazon, but there are hundreds of culinary wonders behind the evergreen curtain. Washington produces more apples than any other state, is synonymous with coffee culture, and is especially famous for fish: multiple varieties of salmon, ling cod, steelhead trout, and one particular “flying” variety (that of the Pike Place Market).

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Burger: Sam’s Tavern in Seattle has been going strong since the 1940s, and their 50/50 Burger’s patty is half Certified Angus beef and half hickory smoked bacon
Best Chinese Restaurant: The Taiwanese pork bao — featuring fatty porcine nuggets stuffed into tender buns — are alone worth the trip to Facing East in Bellevue, but don’t skip the other porcine delights
Best Fried Chicken: The Hawaiian-style fried chicken at Ma’ono in Seattle is twice-fried and umami-spiced
Best Italian Restaurant: Café Juanita in Kirkland celebrates Northern Italian cuisine, and James Beard Award-winning chef Holly Smith’s menu changes frequently
Best Restaurant: Open since 1950, Canlis serves fresh, seasonal dishes that are more polished than cutting-edge in a rustic-modern space, and it essentially invented Northwest cuisine

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Washington 2018

Photos Modified: istockphoto.com

Washington, D.C.

You might not be happy with everything that’s going on in Washington, but you can be sure you’ll be happy with the food. It never disappoints. The city’s ever-changing food scene has enough hype to drown out the noise of everyone always arguing about politics — and once you dig in, politics won’t even seem to matter.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Bar: The Old Ebbitt Grill has been in operation since 1856, and it remains a classy and upscale spot for some oysters and a good glass of wine or whiskey
Best Chinese Restaurant: China Boy is a tiny Chinatown hole in the wall that’s attracted droves of loyal devotees thanks to one thing: its authentic Chinese noodles
Best French Fries: The fries at Blue Duck Tavern are first boiled, then fried in oil, then finally fried one more time in duck fat before being tossed with salt and herbs
Best Mexican Restaurant: Legendary Spanish chef José Andrés spent time in Mexico before opening Oyamel in 2004, and the results are spectacular
Best Sandwich: Since 2008, MGM has been serving some of the finest roast beef sandwiches you’ll find anywhere, slow-roasted and hand-carved.

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Washington, D.C. 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

West Virginia

West Virginia is an overlooked beauty, filled with plenty of green space and fine, hardworking folks. But beyond its beauty and its residents, West Virginia has a ton of culinary highlights.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: Mario’s Fishbowl in Morgantown has been around since 1963, and is like a drinking history lesson
Best Doughnuts: The doughnut recipe used at JR’s Donut Castle hasn’t changed for more than 30 years, and it’s probably because the giant glazed doughnuts are such an incredible attraction
Best Hot Dogs: Sure Lesage’s Hillbilly Hot Dogs might be slightly gimmicky, but it still serves some delicious hot dogs in nearly 30 different styles
Best Italian Restaurant: Charleston’s Fazio’s has been in business (and family-owned) since 1950, and its red sauce basics are complemented by some surprisingly great fried chicken
Best Sandwich: Cam’s Ham is a Huntington institution that’s been serving legendary thin-sliced ham sandwiches since the 1950s

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in West Virginia 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Wisconsin

Wisconsin calls itself “America’s Dairyland,” and it takes the responsibility seriously. That, combined with its large German and Irish populations, gives the state a hearty meat-and-potatoes cuisine — perfect for those long, dark winter months. But there are plenty of unexpectedly great culinary gems to discover as well.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Beer: Wisconsin’s New Glarus may be most well-known for its Spotted Cow, but its Belgian Red is truly the brewery’s best beer
Best Burger: Family-owned and -operated in Milwaukee since 1936, Solly’s claim to fame is the butter burger, one of the last and finest examples in the nation
Best Chili: Served over spaghetti and beans, and available in mild, medium, hot, or extra-hot varieties, the chili at Green Bay’s Chili John’s has been beloved since 1913.
Best Italian Restaurant: Renowned chef Paul Bartolotta’s flagship Italian restaurant, Ristorante Bartolotta in Wauwatosa, has been drawing guests from downtown for more than 20 years
Best Pizza: Zaffiro’s in Milwaukee has been serving a thin-crust pie topped with about three to four times as much cheese as crust since back in 1956

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Wisconsin 2018

Photos Modified: Dreamstime

Wyoming

The cuisine of Wyoming tends to be simple and relatively rugged, true to its cowboy roots. Pan-fried steaks, biscuits, chili, and beef jerky — foods that feel right at home on the range — are the de facto state cuisine, but head to cities like Cheyenne and Jackson and you’ll find a wide variety of restaurants of every stripe, running the gamut from solid pizza, Chinese, and Mexican fare to top-notch Italian and great doughnuts and cupcakes. And, needless to say, there’s also no shortage of great steaks and legendary saloons.

Here’s where you’ll find the best:
Best Bar: Jackson’s Million Dollar Cowboy Bar is as Wild West as it gets
Best Inexpensive Steakhouse: At T-Joe’s in Cheyenne, a 16-ounce rib-eye costs just $24
Best Italian Restaurant: Cheyenne’s Bella Fuoco makes their pizza dough fresh daily and cooks them in a wood oven
Best Pasta Dish: The squid ink chitarra at Jackson’s Glorietta Trattoria is a real showstopper
Best Steakhouse: Buffalo’s Winchester Steak House, which serves some of the best prime rib on earth

Complete List: The Best Food and Drink in Wyoming 2018

You've just watched...

The Best Food and Drink in Every State for 2018 Gallery