Scott Hodge



Aug 30, 2007

Here’s a list of the most unusual restaurants in the world

I would probably say that the most unusual restaurant I have ever been to is a toss up between Tru (Chicago) and a traditional Japanese BBQ spot in Tokyo that I ate at earlier this year. 

Some of my favorite restaurants (not necessarily "unique", but great spots):

Signature Room at the 95th, Chicago – unbelievable view!
Frontera Grill, Chicago – Wonderful Mexican from Rick Bayless
Morton’s, Chicago – Steak.  Chicago style.
Murray’s, Minneapolis – Silver Butterknife Steak
Grimaldi’s, Brooklyn, NY – Brick oven pizzeria. Best in NYC.
Kopp’s, Milwaukee – frozen custard & burgers are right on.
Tavern on the Green, Central Park, NYC – Food was so/so, atmosphere was amazing.
Emeril’s Tchoup Chop, Orlando – Asian/Polynesian from "the" Emeril.
Carnivale, Chicago – Nuevo Latino, Great environment and incredible food.
Hot Doug’s, Chicago – Hot dogs like never before.  And the duck fat fries…  Oh man.
Katz’s Deli, NYC – Pastrami.  And lots of it.
Al’s Famous Beef, Chicago – Wonderful italian beef.
IN-N-OUT Burger, LA – It’s a shame if you don’t know what this is.
Cafe Latte, St. Paul, MN – Turtle Cake.  Mama…

And worth a mention even though it’s not a restaurant:

The New York Bar, Tokyo (Lost in Translation, the views of Tokyo were breathtaking.)

Some places I’d love to visit:

Peter Lugar’s, NYC
Gramercy Tavern, NYC
Jean-Georges, NYC
Alinea, Chicago
Nobu, NYC
Resturant Guy Savoy, Paris
ElBulli, Spain

And a gazillion way less expensive, little hole in the walls all over the country.  Way too many to list…

What did I miss?

22 Responses to “Restaurants”

  1. Chris Baker says:

    Salt Lick BBQ (Driftwood, Tx)-
    Lady and Sons (Savannah, GA)-
    Emeril’s New Orlean Fish House (Las Vegas, NV) –
    I’ve been to his Delmonico Rest. In New Orleans that was some pretty good stuff. Specially when someone else was paying for the meal :) . Whataburger and Culver’s (You should have one near you there in the Chicago area). There awesome fast food places.

  2. Big Chris says:

    Geno’s in Philly for a Philly Cheese Steak.
    Gino’s in Chicago for deep dish pie. Or Uno’s.
    Big Chris

  3. Johnny Laird says:

    Something strange here ,Scott: I figured you woulda mention S-bucks. You can buy food there, right? So, does that make it a restaurant? :-) ))
    Peace & Blessings
    J :-)

  4. Doug Lake says:

    El Rosal – in Modesto, CA. Mexican food that you will crave to eat again and again. As Yogi Berra would say, “It’s so crowed nobody goes there anymore!” – It’s that good.

  5. Tony Wheeler says:

    Murray’s is the bomb! I took a date there in college and almost died of sticker shock…but I tell you what I still remember that meat to this day–nearly ten years later. MMM. I’ll also testify that In-n-Out is hands down my favorite burger joint. Double Double, fries and a strawberry shake. It just doesn’t get a whole lot better than that.
    Seasons 52 in Orlando (Dr. Phillips area near Disney). Healthy food that is soooo tasty. Also not cheap. Menu is always changing…I think weekly. So good.

  6. Bill Graver says:

    Oh man!
    You just had to mention In N Out, didn’t you???
    Guess I’ll have to go book a flight to L.A. because I’m jones’n now.

  7. First of all, you didn’t mention that little taco place you took me to in East Aurora (or was it West?), and secondly, the food at Nobu in NYC is overrated – it’s the atmosphere you go for.

  8. Jeff Leake says:

    you need to try Primani Bros in Pittsburgh…cole slaw on your sandwich topped with french fries!!!
    also Quaker Steak and Lube.

  9. Corbett says:

    K-Paul’s in N.O is amazing as is Commander’s Palace (Paul Prudhomme’s first major gig)
    Dreamland in Tuscaloosa, AL has the best ribs in the entire world. That’s all they serve… Ribs and white bread.

  10. Dana Kidder says:

    A couple of years ago I drove past a place in Philly called “And Now We Call it Gravy.” I didn’t get a chance to stop in…someday…

  11. David says:

    Oregano’s Italian Bistro – Scottsdale, AZ
    Taco Beuno – Tulsa, OK and several other places. JUST NOT IN AZ!!! I know it’s cheap but sometimes you just want some.
    In The Raw – Tulsa, OK Pretty darn good sushi for being in a land locked state.

  12. In South Daytona, FL there is a little place called Booth’s Bowery. Everything on the menu is killer, but their Chicken Wings… Medium Garlic Extra Wet… nothing like them.
    Also, Caps in St. Augustine, The Crow’s Nest in Venice, FL… too many to list.
    The one of a kind hole in the walls are always the best.

  13. Sheila Montanez says:

    Definitely NOLA-Emeril’s restaurant in New Orleans, I had the greatest meal there, actually one month before Katrina hit!- I feel for the people in New Orleans.
    ROKA- Great Japanese restaurant in Harvard Square, Cambridge, MA
    Buddha’s Delight in Boston, MA- It is a vegetarian restaurant but you can order pork, chicken and shrimp that tastes like it but isn’t- does that make sense? It was definitely an interesting experience and the food tasted great!
    Salonika’s Pizza, New Bedford, MA- They have the greatest grinders in the world! I miss it!
    East Side Pockets, Providence, RI- Great Middle eastern food! Best falafels!
    Cafe Paragon, Providence, RI- Great lamb chops!
    Kabog-N-Curry, Providence, RI-Great Indian restaurant, their samosas are to die for!
    I can go on…… Now I’m hungry!

  14. crcole says:

    I love this list..Great post.
    Signature Room and Morton’s in Chicago are wow. Don’t forget the Pizza places. ( Gino’s)
    As for hotdogs. Try our city ( Anderson, SC ) and Skins. ( Ask Perry )
    In and Out Burger…Wish they would come here.
    One question; isn’t ElBulli, a deadly virus?

  15. Brad McDonald says:

    Fun thread!!!
    If your in DC be sure to visit Five Guys for Burgers.
    Ray’s the Steaks (Arlington, VA)
    and for fine dining check out CityZen
    I was surprised to see the French Laundry and PerSe absent from your list. Have you been?

  16. Lizzie says:

    I can’t believe you posted in-out!!!!! I LOVE IT!!!! Thats one of the main reasons I miss california! I even wrote to the head people asking to spread it this way!

  17. Chilly... says:

    I like to start my day at the Brooklyn Street Grille in the shadow of Old Detroit Stadium. $2.95 Breakfast! Yum!

  18. Next time you’re in Brooklyn Park… General Pancho Villa’s is a Mexican Place in the plaza on the northeast corner of W. Broadway & Brooklyn Blvd… Great Mexican food! It looks like a hole in the wall (okay, it is a hole in the wall), and you’ll feel weird when you go in, because I can almost guarantee you will be the only white person in the restaurant.
    Did I mention that the food was great?

  19. eschmid says:

    California Dreamin in Charleston SC

  20. um, McDonald’s, hello?

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