Forbes Traveler just released a list of America's top ten dining cities? #1? New York, followed by such illustrious dining cities as Chicago, LA and New Orleans. And Baltimore? It's number... uhm... Okay, we didn't make the list. But they do admit it's difficult to find a city with no worthwhile place to eat, so that's some small consolation. So I guess crabcakes don't appease everybody, do they? But San Fran, Atlanta, Houston, Vegas, DC and Boston did make it. And I am sure there is good eating in all of those cities. And I'm also sure that the top ten list doesn't need to change, despite our glaring absence from it. Hell, I've eaten in several of those cities, and heard several of you rave about the eats in a few others (that leaves out Houston, about which I haven't heard anybody rave about yet, though I did eat at a Panda Express in the Houston airport between connecting flights). But why does expensiveness seem to be one of Forbes' factors in what qualifies as a top restaurant city? They're not raving about anything I've heard or read about from y'all.
Here's their criteria:
1. Overall number of restaurants above the fast food level.
2. Number of fine dining restaurants with national and international standing.
3. Solid representation of regional American food.
4. A wide segment of second-tier restaurants that would include seafood, steakhouses, and independently chef-owned restaurants.
5. Breadth and depth of ethnic restaurants, especially if the city has a neighborhood such as a Chinatown.
6. A significant number of neighborhood restaurants where the locals tend to eat out regularly.
7. A well-traveled clientele that regards eating out in that city one of the real pleasures of going there. Prices reflect an average three-course dinner for two before wine, tax and tip.
Strangely, looking at the restaurants they do discuss, it almost seems like they threw out #3 through 7. I'm just sayin'.
UPDATE: It was later in the evening when I wrote this. I don't know why I lose my sense of grammar then, more so than at other times. I went back and corrected some typos.