While institutions from Bon Appetit to Open Table publish rankings of the top restaurants across America each year, Eater’s annual rankings are a work of their own. Here, Eater restaurant editor Bill Addison reflects on his months spent eating across the nation by naming his top 38 restaurants of the year. The top nod this year? Blue Hill at Stone Barns.
Calling chef-owner Dan Barber “the Prophet of the Soil,” Eater restaurant critic Bill Addison details Barber’s painstaking devotion to every aspect of the meal, from cultivating produce to raising animals to spearheading a remarkably ambitious bakery. Ingredients are “characters” at Stone Barns, Addison writes, as Barber spins out course after course that seem to reflect Addison and his table’s own desires; they are “the vessels of pleasure through which we might better understand not only the earth, but also the people who nurture the land, and maybe ourselves.”
Other restaurants on the list range from L.A. breakfast shop Sqirl to Dearborn, MI’s Lebanese restaurant Al Almeer to the rustic Willows Inn on Lummi Island, WA — a diverse list that celebrates the spirit of dining across the country, with no two restaurants quite alike.
[Photo: Blue Hill at Stone Barns]