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15 US Foodie Cities Anyone Who Loves To Eat Should Add To Their Travel Goals List

Anyone else want to eat their way across America?

I think we can all agree that food is the best part of life. And what's better than sinking your teeth into your favorite meal? Finding a new favorite, of course! There's nothing as satisfying as traveling to a new town, taking a chance on some cuisine, and delighting your taste buds. So here are 15 US cities that every foodie should add to their bucket list:

Note: Currently, some of these restaurants are temporarily closed due to the coronavirus. It’s important to check and adhere to local government policies as you’re planning any trips. But this list allows you to plan for that long-awaited vacation!

1. Charleston, South Carolina

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Surrounded by marshlands and sea, the Lowcountry combines seafood with Southern charm and culinary traditions from West Africa and the West Indies. Grab shark steak or shrimp and grits at local favorite Hannibal's Kitchen and some crab soup from Charleston Crab House. Admire the sunset with a frozen Bellini and oysters at Stars Rooftop & Grill Room, the only rooftop bar in the city with a 360-degree view.

2. Miami, Florida

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Considering its location, it's no wonder that Miami has become a hub for superb Latinx food. For Peruvian, try the risotto con mariscos (seafood) at CVI.CHE 105. For authentic Cuban cuisine, visit the iconic Versailles Restaurant and order the popular ropa vieja. If you're craving Mexican, visit Bakan, where they serve three Oaxacan moles and a mean Mezcal mule.

3. New Orleans, Louisiana

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Over 18 million tourists visit New Orleans every year, and I'm betting the food has something to do with it. The city offers a unique mix of soul food and Cajun and Creole cuisine that everyone should experience in their lifetime. There's too much good stuff to list it all here, but the fried shrimp po-boys at Domilise's Po-Boy & Bar and jambalaya at Gumbo Shop are a good start. Fun fact: Bananas foster was created in New Orleans, so don't forget to grab some from Brennan's for dessert!

4. Los Angeles, California

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The City of Angels is a sprawling metropolis that offers everything from pop-ups to James Beard Award winning restaurants. With so many cultures thriving in LA, it's unsurprising that fusion spots can be found on just about every corner. For a delightful Korean-Mexican combo, hit up a Kogi BBQ food truck. For a Japanese-American twist, try the ramen burger at Tatsu Ramen.

5. Austin, Texas

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In Austin, barbecue and Tex-Mex reign supreme. At Franklin Barbecue, you might have to wait in line for a couple hours, but the brisket is worth it. And be sure to stop at Matt’s El Rancho, a favorite with both locals and tourists, for their Bob Armstrong queso and chile relleno.

6. San Francisco, California

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The city is bursting with creativity and the food scene is no exception. Make a reservation and head up a secret elevator to Eight Tables by George Chen for an extravagant Chinese tasting menu. Enjoy a Persian omelet at Foreign Cinema, a restaurant that also screens films and hosts art exhibits. Or grab a cocktail at nautical rum bar Smuggler's Cove. The possibilities are endless in the City by the Bay.

7. New York, New York

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With over 25,000 restaurants in NYC, there's something for everyone. After you grab the compulsory slice at Joe's Pizza, take advantage of the diverse cuisine by ordering some Sri Lankan food at Sigiri or a Moroccan meal at Cafe Mogador. And do yourself a favor by splurging at Le Bernardin, a French seafood restaurant with three Michelin stars.

8. Chicago, Illinois

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The Windy City is the master of comfort foods. Dive into some deep dish from Lou Malnati's Pizzeria and savor Garrett Popcorn Shops' CaramelCrisp. But don't forget to check out one of the city's more upscale restaurants like Alinea, the only restaurant in Chicago with a three Michelin stars, which offers imaginative tastings like its famous edible helium balloon.

9. Seattle, Washington

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If you love seafood, the Emerald City is the place for you. From the honey walnut prawns at Peony Kitchen to the oysters tossed in buffalo sauce at Saltwater Fish House & Oyster Bar to the King Crab legs at The Crab Pot, Seattle's got you covered.

10. Las Vegas, Nevada

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Celebrity chefs from around the world open award-winning restaurants in Sin City, making it a world-class dining experience. Visit Guy Fieri’s Vegas Kitchen & Bar for loud, playful meals like his Trash Can Nachos. And be sure to stop at Hell's Kitchen — inspired in name and interior design by Gordon Ramsay's hit show — where you can treat yourself to Beef Wellington and sticky toffee pudding.

11. Portland, Oregon

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Portland is perhaps most famous for its breweries (over 75!), earning the city the nickname "Beervana." But Portland has much more to offer than just beer: An emphasis on locally-sourced produce and an eagerness to experiment has blessed Portlanders with a dynamic food scene. Try the chorizo lollipops at modern Spanish gastropub Ataula or the smoked salmon Norwegian lefse (potato flatbread) at Viking Soul Food, a popular food cart.

12. Nashville, Tennessee

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Nashville's culinary scene has exploded in recent years. In addition to the classic dining spots, chef-driven restaurants are now drawing in the crowds. For some good old-fashioned Southern food, hit up the Loveless Cafe and join the millions who swear by their fried chicken and biscuits. For a trendy vibe, visit Etch Restaurant for some octopus bruschetta or tempura tofu.

13. Denver, Colorado

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In addition to craft beer galore, the Mile High City is known for its sense of adventure and love for locally-sourced and seasonally-driven cuisine. Visit Root Down for this and more: a gas station turned eclectic restaurant, it offers everything from watermelon gazpacho to carrot gnocchi. And Fruition Restaurant offers a new take on farm-to-table — owner Alex Seidel purchased a 10-acre farm, which ensures sustainability and creates artisanal products.

14. Honolulu, Hawaii

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Honolulu is known for its gorgeous beaches and relaxed vibes, but its food scene remains pretty underrated. Enjoy some traditional kalua pig or lomi salmon at Helena's Hawaiian Food. Mix it up with some Hawaiian–Asian fusion at Roy's Hawaii Kai, where people travel for miles for the Misoyaki Butterfish. Or make dinner an adventure at Mugen where Chef Jason Yamaguchi combines his heritages into a Japanese-French eight course tasting.

15. And Washington, D.C.

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The food scene of the nation's capital reflects the country itself: a smorgasbord of different cultures that all contribute to making it better. Enjoy your favorite Indian curry at Rasika. Grab some vegan Israeli street food at Shouk, a food stall at Union Market. Try some cow heel soup and oxtail at Cane, a restaurant led by siblings from Trinidad and Tobago. The only limits in this city are your taste buds.

What's your favorite foodie city? Let us know in the comments below!

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