5 of the best new restaurants in the USA — class of 2019
Let us introduce you to the new eateries causing some heat stateside
Hundreds of new and exciting eateries have opened across America in the last year, with the likes of Bon Apetit, Food and Wine and GQ dishing up their annual best new restaurant lists.
Food Tribe have selected five of the best newbie kitchens in the USA that deserve a big dollop of love, be that for sheer courage in risk taking — goat brains feature on one menu in Queens, New York — or just to celebrate a dedication to hard graft and dreaming big.
Each serve delicious food along with their fascinating backstories. Be sure to give them a shot if you are in town or travelling through. Let us know which you rate highest in the comments.
Pizzeria Beddia — Philadelphia
Jeff Gordinier, Esquire’s Food & Drinks editor listed Pizzeria Beddia number four in his list of 22 top new restaurants in America in 2019 and said of it: “you will only fail to enjoy your dinner if you happen to be dead inside.”
The restaurant has a party room which offers a “hoagie omakase experience,” which will get you a welcome cocktail, several small plates, a variety of hoagies from hoagie master John Walker, pizzas, and a signature soft serve for $75.
Head chef and owner of Pizzeria Beddia Joe Beddia is in charge of the pizza pies — not just any pizza though, he makes “the best pizza in America" according to Bon Apetit magazine. Others have described his pizza as "face meltingly delicious," you get the idea.
Beddia wants to be known for more than the best pizza in America now. He turned his original pizzeria (no phone, no chairs, no credit cards, no more than 40 pies per night) in Philly’s Fishtown neighborhood into a proper restaurant in March last year.
Gordinier revels in Beddia’s “geeked-out approach to cheese-and-crust mastery” and pins down a recent summer pie that involved New Jersey peaches and a garlic-thyme cream, served alongside a “gently curveballing wine list" no less. And if you’re not won over by the photograph of a dog eating a slice of pizza, then perhaps you are dead inside after all.
Adda Indian Canteen — New York
Adda Indian Canteen
Adda Indian Canteen in Long Island City, Queens actually opened in late 2018, but has gradually built a solid reputation as a popular and bustling bolthole for authentic Indian cuisine over the course of the last year — really hitting it's stride lately.
It's well-known for dishes such as a punchy slow-cooked goat biryani, seasonal saag paneer and kale pakoda — that are tasty enough to coax hungry New Yorkers from Manhattan to Queens and it's been topping best new restaurant lists for months now.
New York magazine described the restaurant as “may be so bare-bones casual that it can feel like dinner at a friend’s house, but the food is eye-opening good.”
Chintan Pandya, the chef at this little canteen (and it is little) has cooked in grand kitchens all over the world, and also heads up the kitchen of Rahi, in Manhattan, which serves artisanal (fancier) Indian food. At Adda he sticks closely to family recipes and dishes he learned from India’s home cooks and street vendors, but uses his fine-dining experience to take a few risks: simmering goat brains served with toasted butter rolls, anyone?
The restaurant itself is cafe-style with a metal shanty-style roof over the bar (which is booze free by the way), while one wall is papered with Indian tabloids and broadsheets.
Pasjoli — Santa Monica, California
America’s renewed love affair with French cuisine is smoldering. There’s plenty of bistro fare popping up — particularly on the west side of Los Angeles, which welcomed Dialogue's award-winning chef Dave Beran’s long-anticipated Pasjoli in September.
Located in Santa Monica the super-glamorous restaurant exudes art deco elegance and offers a menu gleaning with caviar, lobster and baba au rhum. Let’s focus on the duck though.
Expect it to arrive tableside — roasted and ready to be placed in an early-1900s duck press and carved on a 1950s tea cart. Pasjoli, which translates to “not pretty” in French, identifies as a new “elevated bistro” with such show-stopping acts of theatre punctuating the entire menu and that will play out at your table at Beran's own pace.
This duck dish was initially limited to 10 orders a night. Most were pre-ordered, and sold out every single evening. Beran has bought another antique press, which he purchased from an Ohio duck hunter and can now offer 20 ducks a night. The lobster is also said to be sensational.
Nixta Taqueria — Austin, Texas
Austin’s highly anticipated casual taco restaurant Nixta Taqueria opened in the Chestnut neighborhood in October and the main focus of this restaurant from co-owners chef Edgar Rico and Sara Mardanbigi is corn — no flour here — in the form of tortillas and tostadas.
It’s winning brownie points for both taste and the fact it's vegan friendly. It is essentially "a blend of this Michelin-starred mixed mash of tacos, but in a comfortable setting that’s casual and accessible to everyone,” Rico told Eater Austin.
It’s the same Edgar Rico behind fine-dining success stories such as Los Angeles’s Son of a Gun and Trois Mec, a stage at Mexico City’s Pujol. It's important to him that the place is approachable, while being “just really outside the box.”
They’ve nailed the truly Mexican-American vibe by staying true to authentic Mexican flavors and heritage (the corn tortillas are made using traditional techniques), but with inventive and surprising spins that really do jump outside the box — ingredients include duck confit or Japanese smoked eggplant tacos, and beet “tartare” tostadas, for example.
One review online declares: “Nixta Taqueria serves some of the best tacos in Austin. And therefore the world,” while another says: “Delicious! We stopped in on a Saturday afternoon for a tuna tostada and a sweet potato taco and left very happy.”
Pay attention to the restaurant's Instagram account for daily specials that vary from charred octopus with gochujang to a smoked whitefish tostada. Tex-Mex, but not as you know it.
Musang — Seattle, Washington
Earlier this year, rising chef Melissa Miranda launched a successful kickstarter campaign to turn her popular Filipino food pop-up Musang into a permanent fixture, while also securing a prime Beacon Hill location for her restaurant in Seattle.
She teased fans (and kickstarter investors) with photos on Instagram of colorful wallpaper and some unique looking dishes, before eventually opening up late last year. The team have already won a best restaurant award and the place has been packed out since.
Filipina-American Miranda started out with a series of brunch and dinner experiences in 2016, and has stayed true to her mission of bringing folk together with Filipinx-inspired food. Both the restaurant’s name and location are of particular significance to her.
Miranda's father immigrated to the United States in the early 70’s and moved to Beacon Hill after spending time in Alaska. He drove a black Mustang, on which the T in the "Mustang" sticker rubbed off after some time. Within his neighborhood’s tight-knit Filipino community, he became known as Musang, which is also ‘Wild Cat’ translated in Tagalog.
Inspired by her father's passion for food and her fond childhood memories of being in the kitchen with him, Miranda moved back to Seattle in 2015 after time spent in Italy and NYC. Her pop-ups garnered a cult following and have finally culminated in a restaurant of her own.
The website states: "Musang is community-driven and not chef-driven, a place to come sit at the table as part of something bigger than just food." Taste the flavors of a dream come true.