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Cities and Their Famous Foods

I'm planning on making a few road trips later this year and was looking for some input and suggestions. Basically the idea behind the road trips is to visit various cities in the US that are known specifically for certain foods. Examples would be: Philadelphia = cheesesteaks, Baltimore = crab cakes, Kansas City = BBQ, Chicago = deep dish pizza, etc.

Obviously those cities have more to offer than specifically what they're famous for, but you get my drift. First I'd like to compile a list of cities and foods before delving into which restaurant best serves the particular food of that city.

Any suggestions?

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  1. New Orleans, Roast beef poboy, or any poboy for that matter

    1. Cincinnati - chili. For some reason, they like chili here as a sauce for pasta. I tried it at a chain known for this dish. It tasted like a lot of blah chili on top of a mound of starchy spaghetti. One thing - for a very low price (at least by Toronto standards) there was a whole lot of it.

      1 Reply
      1. re: ekammin

        I love the Cinci chili! Skyline Chili is the chain and I beg to differ with the above description. It is a very fine grind, thin, type of chili, uniquely spiced (I think it has hints of cinnamon, nutmeg?) that is served in a bowl, or on a hotdog and even spaghetti. You can add onions, grated cheddar and beans, hot sauce, etc. The one in Middletown Ohio also makes a very good Greek Salad. Should not be missed if you are in town.

      2. San Diego: Fish tacos
        NYC: Pizza, bagels
        Santa Fe/Albuquerque: Dishes made with Hatch chiles (burgers, stews, enchiladas, rellenos....)
        Austin/Hill Country: BBQ


        1. Las Vegas and the 99 cent shrimp cocktail?

          1. Boston is known for it's seafood and it's Italian food. The best place for seafood would be next to the Back Bay and the best place for Italian food is in the North End.

            1. Memphis--BBQ

              Tampa and Miami--Cuban Sandwiches

              Lafayette, Louisiana--Gumbo

              La Mesa, New Mexico--Chile Rellenos


              San Francisco--Sourdough Bread

              Portland, Maine--Lobster

              1 Reply
              1. re: Perilagu Khan

                Also Miami for Stone crab season

                and Seattle for oysters and salmon

                1. re: MGZ

                  Though funnily enough, not as old this thread! :0)

                2. Come to Montreal. and see what the big deal is all about our Fairmount bagels. Why is there an age old debate regarding ours vs New York style . If you plan your road trip in line with NYC you will also be able to compare the classic NYC deli pastrami sandwich with the world famous smoke meat sandwiches from Schwartz deli . Finally, one should try a classic French Canadian comfort food, Poutine, our own version of disco fries. Welcome to Canada, a chowhound paradise. This is a kinder gentler place that seems very familiar, yet with a touch of old Europe. Best of all, your US dollar convrts to a dollar ten here. Come on up,, drop us a line.

                  1 Reply
                  1. Santa Maria, CA - tri tips

                      1. Baltimore---Go to Lexington Market, find Faidley's (a seafood merchant), and get a Crabcake on a Cracker. This is the basic, pure form of crabcake.

                        1. Chicago: Pizza at Pizzeria Uno or Lou Malnati's. Hot dogs anywhere. Beef sandwich ("wet and sweet" or "wet and hot") at Al's Italian Beef. Polish Smorgasbord at Red Apple. Tacos and tamales at Taqueria El Milagro. Indian lunch buffet on Devon Avenue. Vietnamese on Argyle Street. Jewish deli sandwiches at Manny's or The Bagel. Or you could get fancy.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: Querencia

                            Great list....
                            AND Garrett's Chicago Mix popcorn! Garrett's mmm Garrett's. Gotta try Garrett's

                            1. re: GraceW

                              Who was first with the Chicago Mix anyway, Garrett's or Nuts on Clark? Dang, that stuff is great.

                          2. New York: Pizza - everywhere

                            1. Bawlmer, Merlin--Pit Beef Sandwiches