The Best Cities for Food in the United States

If you thought the Big Apple had absolutely nothing in common with the modest New Mexican city of Santa Fe, think again. Travel + Leisure readers voted both as two of the top 10 cities for food in the United States. After all, New York City may be known for its upscale, headline-making restaurants, but Santa Fe is just as popular for its red and green chilies. “For a small city,” said one T+L reader about Santa Fe, “the restaurant and food selections are outstanding.” Others raved about the unique, regional dishes like carne adovada: braised pork featuring local meat, dried red New Mexican chilies, and Mexican oregano.

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No. 10: Portland, Maine

Best U.S Cities for Food
Greta Rybus
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No. 9: Portland, Oregon

Best U.S Cities for Food
Hemis / Alamy Stock Photo

Heading to the Pacific Northwest? This way for our list of Portland's best restaurants. >>

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No. 8: Austin

Best U.S Cities for Food
Jeff Minton

Overwhelmed by a city's dining scene? Check our our list of favorite restaurants in Austin.

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No. 7: Santa Fe

Best U.S Cities for Food
Sunpix Food / Alamy Stock Photo
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No. 6: Savannah

Best U.S Cities for Food
Michael Ventura / Alamy Stock Photo
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No. 5: Chicago

Best U.S Cities for Food
Tara Donne

Our favorite restaurants in Chicago, right this way. >>

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No. 4: San Francisco

Best U.S Cities for Food
Alex Farnum

Booking a trip to the Golden Coast? First have a look at our San Francisco restaurant guide.

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No. 3: New York City

Best U.S Cities for Food
Tukka Koski

Our favorite restaurants in New York City, right this way. >>

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No. 2: Charleston

Best U.S Cities for Food
Peter Frank Edwards

Never been to Charleston before? Get pumped by first checking out T+L's favorite culinary options in the city.

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No. 1: New Orleans

Best U.S Cities for Food
Bryce Duffy

“No place beats New Orleans for food,” said T+L reader Charles Grubb. And he wasn’t the only one to share that sentiment. Finding restaurants in New Orleans is an easy task, and they range from casual sandwich shops (serving impossibly good po’boy sandwiches) to venerable institutions with legendary menu items (think: Brennan’s turtle soup). Just saying NOLA brings to mind powdery beignets (or Coquette’s visionary carrot cake version) and spicy gumbo. Visitors have to try acclaimed Creole classics. And if it’s crawfish season? Then you shouldn’t have any questions about what to eat in New Orleans.

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