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America's best places to eat like a local

Opened in 2012 by a father-and-son team, Hattie B’s has become the Nashville spot for fiery, cayenne-infused, deep-fried “hot chicken.” It’s an inspired twist on a dish that’s comfortingly familiar.

Like beignets (made from a 143-year-old recipe) in New Orleans or a bagel sandwich in New York, the best regional American fare feels close to home—even if you’re dining far from yours.

With the combined forces of our staffers and contributors, we canvassed the 50 states and happily put our stomachs to work to yield a menu of America’s must-try dishes.

Big Bad Breakfast,
America's best places to eat like a local

(Photo: Caroline Allison)

Oxford, Miss.

Southern chef John Currence’s motto? “Lard have mercy!” Flour biscuits slathered with sausage gravy and the burrito filled with house-made chorizo will have you praying for more.


(Photo: Emily Hart Roth/Courtesy of Huckleberry)

Santa Monica, Calif.

The perpetually crowded joint is famous for its maple-bacon biscuits, Valrhona chocolate–dipped doughnuts, and egg sandwiches stuffed with bacon, cave-aged Gruyère, and tangy aioli.

Morning Call,

(Photo: Christine Tsai)

New Orleans

The airy beignets (made from a 143-year-old recipe) and café au lait at this 24-hour, wood-paneled Metairie haunt leave the better-known Café du Monde in their sugar dust.

Russ & Daughters,

(Photo: Evan Sung)

New York City

Try a classic bagel sandwich that comes with Scottish smoked salmon, cream cheese, and red onion on a poppy-seed bagel at this Lower East Side institution.


(Photo: Courtesy of

Santa Fe, N.M.

“I love to eat at Tecolote for breakfast. Get the burrito with sausage or bacon smothered in green chiles, and plenty of the mini cinnamon rolls.” 

Marshall Store,

(Photo: Thayer Allyson Gowdy)

Marshall, Calif.

The oysters alone (from a farm up the road) are worth the hour-long drive from San Francisco to a dockside shanty on Tomales Bay. But a bowl of clam chowder feels particularly restorative on a foggy northern California day.

Tortilleria y Tienda de Leon’s,

(Photo: Courtesy of Tortilleria y Tienda de Leon's)

Portland, Ore.

“Tortilleria y Tienda de Leon’s, at the back of a grocery store, is super-authentic. The nopales (cactus) salad is a must.”

Paulie Gee’s,

(Photo: Evan Sung)

New York City

For some of New York’s best pizza, head to Greenpoint, Brooklyn for the Regina pizza that comes topped with fior di latte, Italian tomatoes, Pecorino Romano, olive oil, and fresh basil.

Thiên Thanh,

(Photo: Courtesy of Thien Thanh)


Catering to one of the nation’s largest Vietnamese communities, Bellaire Boulevard is lined with countless pho and bánh xèo joints—but everyone comes here for bánh cuón: dainty, ravioli-like crêpes filled with ground shrimp or barbecued pork and drizzled with a pungent nuoc cham sauce.

Hattie B’s,

(Photo: Rick Poon)


Opened last year by a father-and-son team, Hattie B’s quickly became the spot for fiery, cayenne-infused, Nashville-style deep-fried “hot chicken.” Cool your palate with a craft beer and killer pimento mac-and-cheese.

See more of America’s best places to eat like a local


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