Best Restaurant Dishes Of 2013

Best Restaurant Dishes Of 2013
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Best Restaurant Dishes Of 2013

These dishes were unforgettable. Read on for more.

Image Credit: Greg Powers

Grilled Baby Corn With Black Garlic

Trois Mec, Los Angeles

In most cities, the hot tickets are for concerts. In L.A., they're for seats at Trois Mec, Ludo Lefebvre's new avant-garde restaurant set inside an old-school pizza place. Once I snagged a ticket, I understood why his five-course menu got everyone so excited, especially the ingenious vegetarian take on ceviche: smoky grilled baby corn on honey custard in a broth of garlic, ginger, lime juice and chile-based ají amarilo paste. I'm not the only one who loves the dish: Anthony Bourdain, Lefebvre's co-judge on The Taste, told Ludo it was the best thing he'd ever eaten.—Kate Krader

Image Credit: Rick Poom

Foie Gras with Avocado

The Elm, Brooklyn

It takes a talented chef to pair foie gras with avocado. But I knew I could trust Paul Liebrandt to do it. At his new French-leaning spot, The Elm, the chef makes a perfectly smooth foie torchon. Then he serves it with avocado. Crazy, I thought, but together they're outrageously silky; plus the avocado's subtle flavor boosts the ultra-buttery foie gras. Liebrandt adds other glorious, unconventional touches: He coats the torchon in smoky kombu gelée, drizzles almond milk next to the avocado slices and spikes the accompanying brioche with Thai long peppers. Trust me: It's delicious.—KK

Image Credit: Marcus Nilsson

Coconut And Cuttlefish

Minibar, Washington, DC

José Andrés's wit is on full display in this dish of coconut and cuttlefish. At first, I couldn't tell which ingredient was which, since both were translucent. Of course, they were the opposite of what I expected: José had seared the sweet coconut and turned the cuttlefish into a delicate tartare. And he'd transformed the cuttlefish and its ink into two scrumptious, distinct sauces—a creamy white one and a pitch-black one.—Dana Cowin

Image Credit: Greg Powers

Lamb With Eggplant And Olives

Fork, Philadelphia

Since Eli Kulp arrived at Fork a little over a year ago from Torrisi Italian Specialties in Manhattan, he's become a huge Pennsylvania ingredient advocate. Take the components of his incredible roast lamb dish: charred eggplant laced with brown butter and honey; hibiscus-infused jus; olive crumble. Almost everything comes from the region. "My cooks are amateur foragers," he says.—KK

Image Credit: Ball and Albanese

Pork Blood Stew

Qui, Austin

When I went to Qui, I got to sit at the fabulous Beyoncé Booth. (Beyoncé hasn't eaten there yet, but her booth awaits.) Paul Qui's eclectic menu includes recipes that reflect his Filipino heritage, like dinuguan—a stew made with pork stock, pork blood and confited pork belly, breast and head. The Qui flourish: crisp gnocchi. Beyoncé, don't miss this dish.—Kate Heddings

Image Credit: Aimee Wenske

See more of the Best New Restaurant Dishes of 2013.

Image Credit: Marcus Nilsson


The year's most extraordinary dishes reflect the biggest restaurant trends of the moment: nose-to-tail-fin eating, live-fire grilling and the quest for elemental flavors.

Check out the slideshow above for the best restaurant dishes of 2013.

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