Each year, editors from Food & Wine magazine taste their way across the country in search of the women and men cooking the most delicious, creative food. (Tough job, we know.)
The results are in, and this year's picks—nominated by restaurant critics, food writers and other experts, then selected by editors—come from restaurants in nine cities. They're chosen for their creativity, talent and relative rookie status: none have been in charge of a kitchen for more than five years.
Listed in alphabetical order, here are 11 of the best new chefs cooking today, as named by Food & Wine, which, like TIME, is owned by Time Inc.
Restaurant: Lazy Bear, San Francisco
Favorite food: C ountry ham. "It is a uniquely American product that is delicious and complex on its own, whether eaten as crudo or baked, but is also great with vegetables.”
Restaurant: Emmer & Rye, Austin
Favorite food: Pasta, for the simplest of reasons. "The chew of the noodle, how it adheres to the sauce properly, how the noodle itself tastes. Something that can be so refined is also so homey. We crave it when we are young, old and every age in-between."
Restaurant: MoPho, New Orleans
Favorite food: Changes with the seasons. "B ut if I must have a top pick, it would be grillades and grits, followed by really ripe peaches or satsumas."
Restaurant: Salare, Seattle
Favorite food: Yogurt for breakfast; hamburgers for dinner
Restaurant: Liholiho Yacht Club, San Francisco
Favorite food: Dim sum . "I am an admirer of Chinese cuisine—def my all time fave. Japanese and Korean right behind that."
Restaurant: Alter, Miami
Favorite food: Pasta—especially fettuccini bolognese
Restaurant: Elizabeth, Chicago
Favorite food: Raspberries (but never passes up octopus on a menu). " And hen of the woods mushrooms, breaded and shallow fried in butter!"
Restaurant: Rose's Luxury, Washington, D.C.
Favorite food: "Peking duck!"
Fabian von Hauske and Jeremiah Stone
Restaurant: Contra/Wildair, New York City
Age: 26 (von Hauske, on left); 31 (Stone, on right)
Favorite food: Chilaquiles; pizza
Restaurant: Night + Market, Los Angeles
Favorite food: F ried chicken. "My favorite spot is a family-run stall in one of the wet markets in Chiang Rai. I’ve spent a good amount of time hounding them for the recipe, and I think that after a few years of tinkering, I’ve finally figured it out. I call them out by name on our menu too, since we do it in tribute to them: It’s crunchy, salty, fatty, and pretty much the best drinking food."