If you've made a restaurant reservation in the past few years, chances are you've used Open Table, the reservations software used by many top restaurants nationwide.
But just like everything from Facebook to dating apps, Open Table has gotten into the "reviews" business. Diners have been leaving praise and critiques of restaurants on the Open Table site, and the company has used those reviews to create a list of diners' favorite restaurants across the country.
"The Top 100 Hot Spot Restaurants in America list for 2017 highlights restaurants with not only delicious food and drinks, but vibrant bar scenes, live music and festive atmospheres," writes Open Table. "The list of honorees is based on an analysis of 10,000,000+ reviews of more than 24,000 restaurants across the country — all submitted by verified diners."
Of course, the list doesn't necessarily indicate that a restaurant is one of the best in town, but instead indicates restaurants that are likely to book a lot of reservations for people who are likely to leave online reviews (a specific cross-section of the dining world).
Without further ado, here's the list:
4 Bells, which we agree is an excellent choice when you're searching for classic seafood dishes, plus, it's the best runner-up to Revival when fried chicken is on your mind.
1610 Harmon Place, Minneapolis
Butcher and the Boar has long been one of the top contenders for big cuts of meat, sophisticated Southern, pork, pork, and more pork, plus bourbon.
1121 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis
Chino Latino lost chef Tyge Nelson to his own Mexican restaurant, West 7th Street's Pajarito. Still, the Uptown stalwart is a go-to for fun takes on pan-Latin and pan-Asian fare, especially during their twice-daily happy hour.
It's been open since 2000, so 17 years in the biz can't be altogether wrong. We understand that after almost 20 years on the same block, they're trading in their signature glittery awning for an actual sign, indicating that a new generation is hunting for the place anew.
2916 Hennepin Ave. S., Minneapolis
Fogo de Chao reminds us once more that we Minnesotans love our meat. And if we can get it in portions of "all you can eat," all the better. When it opened, the Brazilian steakhouse concept consistently stayed at the top of the list of Minnesota's most popular eateries.
645 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis
Spoon & Stable will only sound unfamiliar to you if you haven't been paying attention to restaurant lists of any kind, as the name all but signifies new standards for dining in Minneapolis.
When Gavin Kaysen re-planted his Minnesota roots in the North Loop after a big-deal career in New York City, we started seeing our city in all the national glossies, which we lapped up like a cat does cream. Now that he's out in Wayzata with shiny new Bellecour, watch for it at the top of all the new lists. You may even see Bellecour on next year's Open Table list.
211 N. First St., Minneapolis