3/07/2013 10:30:00 AM

7 Up-and-Coming Food Cities Around the U.S.

Nashville
While cities like New York, San Francisco, Chicago and Portland are all big-ticket food towns at this point, there are some seriously exciting culinary developments going on in some less likely places. Check out seven cities that are poised for foodie glory in our slide show. Is your hometown not on the list? Tell us why you think it should be in the comments.

78 comments :

  1. Unless its already considered to have "made it" into the upper echelon of food cities (as it should), any up and comer list that doesnt include Cleveland is hard to take seriously!

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    1. You are so right-- expected to see it on this list for sure. Have lived in the area all of my life-- and we have always had amazing food here, but now the rest of the country has realized....thanks in large part to Michael Symon

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    2. I also expected to see Cleveland on this list. Michael Symon HAS brought attention to the area, but it is the talents of the chefs who are holding it.

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    3. Clevland, you have to be kidding, Clevland LMAO

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    4. Cleveland has fantastic food, anyone who thinks it doesn't has obviously never been here. This is a foodie town with a growing micro brew reputation to wash it all down with!

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    5. Cleveland has it all when it comes to food; Chinato, Fire, Flour, Flying Fig, Lola, Grovewood, Johnny Mango, Melt, Bspot, Paladar, Umami. Crop, Parallax, L'Albatros - the list goes on & on. Check out Cleveland Independents for more about the food scene in at http://www.clevelandindependents.com/restaurants.php

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    6. Holy Cow! You guys ALL read my mind. Chinato is amazingpants, B-Spot and its pickle bar and creative goodies make me salvate just at the thought and Fahrenheit has never disappointed. I know that I have a ton more on my bucket list for each visit! Not to mention all the amazing little ethnic spots that have been in the city forever and the Westside Market...

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    7. Also, to the person who can't even spell "Cleveland" with the word right in front of their eyeballs? LMAO.

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    8. I was born in Cleveland and lived 1/3 of my life there (not a bucket list place even with fine champagne in the bucket)...then 1/3 in Chicago (amazing)...how about Austin, TX?

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    9. Cleveland certainly deserves to be on the list. Its chefs and restaurants appear often at the top of national publications' top restaurants lists. It's possible Cleveland wasn't included because its already here as a food city. In addition, you can have exceptional meals in Cleveland for less than half the price of what they'd charge in the "big" cities.

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  2. Totally agree with anonymous! As a transplant to Cleveland who has traveled extensively and loves good food, Cleveland has so much to offer. From James Beard nominees to an Iron Chef and the home of the world's oldest continuously operational public market, Cleveland offers so much for foodies and more.

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  3. Very surprised you didn't include Baltimore, MD too. It a true up and coming scene...

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  4. Dallas belongs on this list! We have so many top chefs here and FOODIES that dine out every night of the week because of the great selection and chefs! Stephen Pyles, Tim Byres, Bruno Davaillon, Tiffany Derry, Omar Flores, Scott Gottlich, Jeff Harris, Jason Maddy, Teiichi Sakurai, André Natera, Tre Wilcox, David Uygur and restaurateur Nick Badovinus. All in Dallas, TX!

    We also have a great restaurant critic at The Dallas Morning News, Leslie Brenner, who serves up a Best in DFW list of places to each every month. HOW could Dallas be left off this list?!

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  5. I would say Scottsdale AZ 85251 is an amazing food town,,over 350 restaurants in this zip..Philadelpia Sandwich Company on Craftsmens Court in Old Town is at the top of the list..24/7 Cheeseateaks and Tastycakes..Just sayin'

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  6. Why is New Haven, CT not on this list?! Just this past summer The Boston Globe referred to it as quietly blossoming into a foodie mecca!

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    1. I agree, New Haven should definitely be on this list. So many great restaurants - can't beat the food there!

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  7. I'm surprised Madison, WI isn't on the list. Have you looked over James Beard nominees? It's representing pretty hard.

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  8. You arrive in Charleston usually through North Charleston and in a mile or so, begin the graze from north to south, east to west Charleston. We've made 8 trips in 12 years to graze and we have never, ever been disappointed. If you like great food, go to Charleston. The city proper is small enough to walk off one meal to arrive at another restaurant to start again. We like to have hors d'oeuvres at one, appetizers at another, then the entree at a third and definitely more than one dessert. I won't even get into the beauty and history of the city that is all around you as well as the fabulous white sand beaches nearby. What a city! If my husband would move there, I'd be packing now.

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    1. Exactly. It's not clear to me that the writers have ever actually BEEN to Charleston. Saying it has the "Potential to become the next Portland of the South" - I don't know where to begin with THAT. Give Portland its due, sure, but there's no comparing Charleston to anywhere. Is the writer trying to say it's so unique, it's just like all the other unique places?

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  9. Once again Houston TX is overlooked. That's ok. Leaves more for us. (>;

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    1. I agree Lisa! Grand Rapids' dining scene has exploded over the past decade. We have great local eateries and one of the fastest growing brewing cultures in the U.S. (we tied with Asheville last year for "Beer City of the U.S."). Just a few examples: The Greenwell, Grove, Brewery Vivant, Maru, Red's on the River, The Winchester ...

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  11. Thanks so much for recognizing Birmingham on your list. I was surprised you didn't mention Frank Stitt, who's restaurants have been in so many national top 10 lists & James Beard awards in the past 30 years. He is without a doubt the forefather of the 'Southern' food movement. Not only in the city, but in the whole South. Many, many fine chefs have spent their early years under his humble tutelage. Google him and be amazed. Birmingham is a better place because of him and many many more like him. Thanks again guys!

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    1. You hit the nail on the head John Bryan Hopkins! I think they did a great job of describing how great the food scene is in Birmingham even if they did leave off Frank Stitt.

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  12. How is it possible that Boulder on this list? Have you been to Boulder? I live there and it's pretty devoid of culinary greatness. The best food in Boulder comes off food trucks for gosh sakes!

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    1. You must live under a rock. Have you even been to Frasca, Oak at Fourteenth, or (my new favorite there) Pizzeria Basta? Culinary greatness all around. I'm from Boulder but don't live there anymore.

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  13. Pago is a joke. Scott's paying them off once again

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  14. Better check out Durham, NC. With several James Beard awarded chefs and restaurants, a growing cache of cocktail mixologists, a thriving food truck business with monthly rodeos, and a group of pastry chefs, who include cupcakes and donuts in their repertoires, as well as a reliance on locally sourced ingredients, it's becoming the place to dine and enjoy consistently delicious meals.

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  15. Rob McDaniel rocks---note that SpringHouse is on beautiful LAKE MARTIN in Alexander City about 1.5hrs south of Birmingham. Rob is also Executive Chef over the new Kowaliga Restaurant opening this spring on LAKE MARTIN! Come visit us! #lakemartinliving

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    1. Lacey, you are so right! Although I'd say an hour/15 but whose counting. Rob is changing the whole culinary landscape of the mid-Alabama region. Can't wait to see what great things he will bring to Lake Martin this coming year.

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  16. I know that no one likes to say anything positive about Detroit, but with Greek, Middle Eastern, Italian, Polish and Mexican influences (and another of Michael Symon's restaurants), you can't ignore them forever (though Food Network has tried their best).

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