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My 2019 Top Five Favourite Restaurants

My next 2019 Top Five picks surround food, and, well, more food.

My waistline is evidence of lots of good eating out last year, although I did seem to do that mostly in Miami and New York. It was tough to select my Top Five Favourite Restaurants but I narrowed it down to a handful in the end plus some notable mentions.

1. Novikov, Miami
There’s one of these in London too. Slightly overhyped, but we loved it. Japanese-Chinese concept with an outside terrace. Inside was a little too perfect, bit like a museum exhibit but a seat next to the elaborate glassed fresh market was a winner. Our food was also delish.

2. Herbsaint, New Orleans
I first went here 12 years ago, it was good then, it is really good now. A French-Italian hybrid menu housed lots of classics with the crispy goat a particular fave. Buzzy but not snobby atmosphere in a disarmingly casual open dining room.

3. Nobu Downtown, New York
This was in my Top Five last year too. Nobu provides a complete showcase of great fish dishes and delicious bite size sashimi and sushi plates. I was with a big group and we were in there for hours. Like clockwork service, sumptuous, opulent, busy, expensive.

4. Babbo, New York
Top notch very established Greenwich Village Italian. Casually elegant, the restaurant not the food. Relaxed and fun environment with a foot-tapping play list in the background. The wine guy was a little over-zealous I thought, yet the food was amazing with the beef cheek ravioli with red wine and squab liver spectacular.

5= Los Fuegos, Miami
Good looking place, although we were forced to sit outside presumably as we were with a 9-year old and the crowd inside was very South Beach! Big portions with an Argentinian slant, the salt crust beef was fab. Gigantic and lumpy wine list, but the food matched the hype.

5= Pau, Miami
I couldn’t split these last two and they were both in the Faena Hotel. Chef Paul Qui is known for his bold flavour combinations and we were treated to small plates of a rich mix of cuisines. We had a great server who explained the menu perfectly, which did actually include a Unicorn dish.

Honourable Mentions: Niche Niche, New York; Au Cheval, New York; Jacks Wife Frieda, New York; Faith & Flower, Los Angeles

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