2012 Clean plate Awards

Once again, we have tapped some of the top tastemakers in the country to nominate the most irresistible, most scrumptious restaurant dishes they’ve enjoyed over the past year. The stellar group we assembled has eaten its way through countless cuisines in venues ranging from street carts to temples of fine dining. They may say they’re doing “research,” but as anyone in the business knows, eating out is an integral part of our DNA; it feeds our passion and stokes the soul.

So, click here to see where these well-traveled chefs and restaurateurs—your peers—have been and what has inspired them to clean their plates.

Today's top stories

1
Menu labeling—for calories in particular—has been around at the municipal level (most notably in New York City) for some time now, and in 2010 federal legislation was proposed (and lobbied against)...
2
A QSR humming through the lunch rush is sweeter than a Carpenters medley to veterans who rose from sweaty, pressure-filled crew jobs to find wealth and success as chain executives. It’s common to...
3
Today’s consumers equate healthy with “clean” or “free-from” additives, even when it comes to indulgent items. Technomic asked consumers to rate the healthfulness of these terms, shown here with the...
4
Because different people define “healthy” different ways, this ranking of the top brands does as well. Technomic’s Consumer Brand Metrics study asks customers to rate the chains they frequent on a...
5
When Jennifer Peters opened Just Be Kitchen in April 2017, her mission was “to serve mindful mouthfuls from a conscious kitchen with kindness on a plate,” she says. On the menu, that translates to...
6
A cocktail of low unemployment and high turnover is not going down so easy for the industry. The Bureau of Labor Statistics is reporting the lowest national unemployment rates in a decade—the effects...
7
For many limited-service spots, vegetarian options consist of regular menu items minus the meat: for example, a salad without the chicken, or a saucy pasta dish, hold the sausage. That omission can...
8
Today’s diners are more conscious than ever about the foods they eat—what they’re made of, but more importantly, what they’re not made of. Consumers are interested in, and in some cases, will pay...
9
In today’s rigid labor market, restaurant operators have made headlines launching education benefits , referral bonuses , competitive wages and career development programs to attract workers and coax...
10
Like any kitchen tool, a protective glove is only as good as the skills of the person using it. I know chefs who swear by cut-resistant gloves and others who do not allow them in their kitchens,...