20 James Beard Award-Winning Restaurants

The 2016 winners from the "Oscars of the food world"
May 3, 2016
by Zagat Staff

The annual "Oscars of the food world," aka the James Beard Foundation Awards gala went down at Lyric Opera House in Chicago this week, hosted by The Chew star Carla Hall. Below, check out 20 restaurants around the country that won big at the 2016 ceremony.

Middle Eastern · Uptown · $$

Israeli cuisine gets a Southern spin at this Uptown eatery that incorporates Turkish, North African and Greek flavors into dishes like wood-fired Brussels sprouts, hummus with curry-fried cauliflower, and shakshuka with sunchokes, all accompanied by wood-fired pita bread. The chic blue-and-white space boasts marble tables, cushy leather seats and ring chandeliers, capped with an outdoor patio.
Osteria Mozza
Italian · Hancock Park · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.3 · Service 4.3

A "divine food experience" awaits at this "true foodie" "icon" on Melrose, where "superb" pastas and other "extraordinary" Italian fare "live up to all the hype" ; yes, the tabs are "expensive" and the "classic" setting overseen by a "serious" staff is "noisy as hell" , but it's "one of those few places actually worth" it; P.S. it's "still impossible to get into" , though walk-ins can try for a seat at the mozzarella bar.
Mexican · Flatiron · $$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.0 · Service 4.1

"Creative, brilliant" contemporary Mexican cuisine from chef Enrique Olvera comes in "chic" , "modern" quarters at this "über-trendy" Flatiron "scene" ; you’ll "spend a bundle" – assuming you score a "hard-to-come-by" reservation – and the "quintessentially ‘buzzy’ room" gets "loud" , but most hardly notice after an "original, delicious" cocktail or two.
Flour Bakery
Bakery · $$
Food 4.5 · Decor 3.7 · Service 3.9

Chef/ "idol" Joanne Chang’s "upscale" breakfast-and-lunch bakery chain earns a "cult following" for her "thoughtfully prepared" sandwiches on "wonderful" fresh bread and "tasty pastries" , including the "infamous" "rave" -worthy sticky buns ( "every dieter’s worst nightmare" ); most locations are typically "bustling with hip young families" and urbanites "planning their next startup" , so they’re "chaotic" and "usually swamped" , but "very solicitous service" keeps things moving.
Maison Premiere
Seafood · Williamsburg · $$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.3

It "really feels like the Big Easy" at this "gorgeous" Williamsburg hang offering "beautiful, plump" oysters and "serious" cocktails (including "creative" absinthe options) alongside other "delicious" seafood-focused dishes in "old New Orleans" digs; snagging a seat is "tough" , but a seasonal garden helps.
Fish & Game
American · $$$$

NYC celeb chef Zakary Pelaccio of Fatty Crab and Fatty 'Cue fame goes locavore at his new Hudson hot spot dedicated to showcasing regional bounty in an ever-changing $85 New American tasting menu (wine pairings for an additional $75, and prix fixe $55); foodies are flocking to the snazzy, former blacksmith's shop with a rustic dining room and a louche-yet-luxe bar/lounge kitted out with red-flocked wallpaper, blue wainscotting, big brick fireplaces (one with a rotisserie) and leather couches.
The Bachelor Farmer
European · North Loop · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.4 · Service 4.4

"Inventive," Scandinavian-inspired "food that wows" defines the menu at this North Loop hot spot where many of the locally sourced ingredients are grown on its rooftop farm; the 19th-century former warehouse space features "woodsy-yet-urban-chic decor" and also has a "don't miss" downstairs "secret speakeasy" , Marvel Bar, pouring "life-altering" cocktails.
Italian · Germantown · $$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.4 · Service 4.5

A locavore’s dream ", this " trendy " Germantown " rustic " Italian uses area ingredients in " house-cured salami ", " best-in-town " belly-ham pizza and other " astonishing creations " served alongside " artisanal " cocktails; the " excellent " staffers " steer you in the right direction ", and regulars know to sit in front of the open kitchen to watch the chef's " exquisite technique."
Animal Restaurant
American · Fairfax · $$
Food 4.6 · Decor 3.9 · Service 4.5

Vegetarians beware – it’s "all about the carnivores" at this "hip" Fairfax New American where celeb chefs Vinny Dotolo and Jon Shook revel in the "sheer creative fun" of conjuring up a "decadent" menu focused on "remarkable" "snout-to-tail" dishes; the "sparse furnishings" and "informed" , "efficient" staffers exude a "cool" , "casual" vibe, but just be aware that reservations are "not always easy" to get.
Rose's Luxury
American · Capitol Hill · $$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.5 · Service 4.5

A "happy dining experience" awaits at this Capitol Hill New American that wins accolades for an "over-the-top delicious" menu that’s small plates–centric and "not afraid of bold flavors and some heat" ; from its "hip, farmhouse style" to the "sweet" servers that steer the table in "all the right directions" , it’s no wonder that most find it "worth" the wait.