An annual list is out from Texas Monthly spotlighting the best new restaurants to open in the state last year. Titled "Where to Eat Now," the list recognizes restaurants that opened across the Lone Star State between December 1, 2017 and December 1, 2018.
Fort Worth scores one entry, an honorable mention for Four Sisters, the family-owned restaurant from Tuan Pham, a former chef at Shinjuku Station and Tokyo Café.
Houston dominates the list for the second year in a row, earning four spots, including the No. 1 slot for chef Chris Shepherd, for his 2018 trio of UB Preserv, One Fifth Mediterranean, and Georgia James.
Food editor Pat Sharpe wonders whether the chef should find a permanent home for One Fifth Mediterranean or simply ditch the plan to shutter the concept on July 31. "When you've just created one of the best restaurants of your career, it would be crazy to mess with success," she writes.
Other Houston restaurants on the list include Nancy's Hustle in third place, Poitín in sixth, and Indigo in eighth. Indianola, Agricole Hospitality's eclectic modern diner, lands Houston's only spot on the honorable mentions list.
Dallas scores three restaurants on the list: Macellaio, the charcuterie-focused spot in Oak Cliff, takes third place; Petra and the Beast, chef Misti Norris' ode to "foraging, fermenting, and whole-animal cookery," comes in seventh. Tulum, the modern Mexican restaurant from restaurateur and El Fenix owner Mike Karns, comes in tenth.
Dallas Design District restaurant The Charles, Victory Park "saloon" Billy Can Can, and Fachini in Highland Park Village all earn honorable mentions.
Two Austin restaurants make the list, including masa-obsessed restaurant Suerte, which ranks second; and Italian restaurant Intero in fifth place. Loro and Sour Duck Market earn honorable mentions.
San Antonio nabs one spot on the list: Clementine, the restaurant where chefs John and Elise Russ let their locally-sourced ingredients speak for themselves. It takes ninth place. Two San Antonio restaurants appear among the honorable mentions: Meadow and Playland, as does Fredericksburg's Emma + Ollie.
Overall, Sharpe's picks seem to be very much on trend. Shepherd is a Beard Award winner, and Macellaio has ties to one of Dallas' most-acclaimed restaurants.
Even 13-seat Indigo has already earned near universal praise locally; Sharpe's including it on her list feels like the next step towards the national spotlight for the tasting menu restaurant.