> Restaurant: Sam Choy’s Kai Lanai
> Location: Kailua-Kona (Big Island)
The ebullient, James Beard Award-winning Choy serves what he calls “Hawaiian heritage cuisine” at his beautifully situated restaurant on Hawaii’s Big Island. Asian braised short ribs, poke bowls and a poke wrap, and duck stew are examples.
> Restaurant: The Snake Pit
> Location: Enaville
This landmark establishment near Coeur d’Alene dates its origins to 1880. Along the way, it has operated under numerous different names, but has been known as the Snake Pit at least since the 1950s. Chicken-fried steak and eggs for breakfast and sandwiches and burgers for lunch and dinner are typical fare, but there are also barbeque specialties smoked in-house.
> Restaurant: Twin Anchors Restaurant & Tavern
> Location: Chicago
Frank Sinatra was a regular at this 1932-vintage tavern and barbecued rib joint, with its linoleum floor, bare red tables, and nautical decor. Sinatra, hosting a party there in the 1970s, reportedly ordered “Ribs, and keep ’em coming!” Other celebrities who have enjoyed the food at this Chicago standby include Conan O’Brien, Jack Black, Mike Ditka, Goldie Hawn, and Helen Mirren.
> Restaurant: St. Elmo Steak House
> Location: Indianapolis
This classic steakhouse has been serving Indianapolis since 1902. There’s nothing contemporary here – just a signature shrimp cocktail, Caesar salad, lobster tails, an array of steaks, and other standards of the genre. No trendy wagyu, either, but the Midwestern Black Angus beef dry-aged USDA prime steaks will do you up just fine.
> Restaurant: Breitbach’s Country Dining
> Location: Balltown
It’s tough to beat a company history that opens like this: “Opened in 1852 by federal permit issued from President Millard Fillmore, Breitbach’s is Iowa’s oldest food and drinking establishment.” What’s more, the place has been in the Breitbach family since 1862. Steaks and seafood (including frogs’ legs) are featured, there’s a full range of sandwiches, and the pies are homemade. Or come for the all-you-can-eat buffets at lunchtime Thursday-Saturday and dinner Friday-Sunday.
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