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Savannah, Georgia Named to the List of "Hottest Food Cities"

Zagats recently recognized the food scene in Savannah by naming it to their list of the “26 Hottest Food Cities for 2016” in the United States. This is an honor well deserved with the many amazing restaurants found throughout the city.

It’s not hard to find down-home cooking and Southern cuisine in Savannah. However, it takes more than just one or two cuisines to make Zagat notice. The Savannah culinary scene has exploded over the past few years and it has finally started to gain notice.

Savannah landed in the #12 spot on the list for many reasons. Zagat contacted editors all around the country and asked them to explain why their city had the best year when it came to food. The editors looked for the growth in new restaurants, local and national awards given to area restaurants, media attention and a few other factors. Then, Zagat too the information and asked the top people in the food media before creating their list.

What Zagat Said About Savannah

The Hostess City is “on the rise again” and Zagat believes the city has shifted into a higher gear when it comes to the food scene. They said the city had reawakened over the past few years and many top restaurants are known as game changers in Savannah.

They mentioned the nationally acclaimed The Grey because of the elegant decor and incredible Southern dishes. This restaurant is actually found in an restored bus terminal and provides plenty tradition of the area throughout the menu.

Another restaurant cited by Zagat was The Florence, which offers fine Italian cuisine. The Florence is known for using southern-grown ingredients and the rustic ambiance. It’s found in an old ice factory building.

Zagat also noticed the movement towards a more modern southern cuisine throughout the city. Some of the restaurants the cited for this type of food included:

  • Cotton & Rye – Known for fusing traditional with modern.
  • The Wyld Dock Bar – Found on the waterfront and providing a menu full of seafood dishes with a Southern twist.
  • Rocks on the River – Serving American comfort food with a Southern influence.

Expansion Also Made a Difference

As one of the key factors for cities making the list, Zagat looks closely at how the food scene expanded. In Savannah, this means looking at three specific restaurants: Hitch, Savannah Taphouse and Vault Kitchen & Market.

Hitch has become a place known for unique choices, such as chicken pancake tacos and PB&J wings. While it’s certainly unique, it also draws a crowd.

The Savannah Taphouse is one of the best new restaurants in the city with an upscale sports bar feel and an incredible menu. The made-from-scratch dishes have won many awards.

Vault Kitchen & Market has become known for the unique bank offerings found throughout the menu, such as Deposit Box Duck Tacos. It’s found in a renovated bank building and provides a chic atmosphere.

Visitors Discovering What Locals Already Know

Those living in Savannah probably won’t be surprised that the city made the list. However, they may feel it should have been higher as locals have known how great the food scene is for many years now. With plenty of excellent restaurants and all types of unique finds throughout the city, visitors now have the chance to discover what the locals already know.

The Full list of 26

Here’s a quick look at the full list of 26 U.S. cities named as the hottest food cities of 2016.

  • 1. Washington D.C.
  • 2. Los Angeles, CA
  • 3. Denver, CO
  • 4. Boston, MA
  • 5. Seattle, WA
  • 6. New Orleans, LA
  • 7. Asheville, NC
  • 8. Philadelphia, PA
  • 9. Charlotte, NC
  • 10. Atlanta, GA
  • 11. Charleston, SC
  • 12. Savannah, GA
  • 13. Detroit, MI
  • 14. Birmingham, AL
  • 15. Indianapolis, IN
  • 16. Nashville, TN
  • 17. Chicago, IL
  • 18. Austin, TX
  • 19. Raleigh, NC
  • 20. San Francisco, CA
  • 21. New York, NY
  • 22. Miami, FL
  • 23. Houston, TX
  • 24. Dallas-Fort Worth, TX
  • 25. Province, RI
  • 26. San Diego, CA