The food industry has faced an unsteady future these past 19 months.
Businesses shuttered unexpectedly at the beginning of the pandemic then restaurant owners faced rehiring challenges as cities slowly reopened.
But these seven California restaurants weathered through the turbulence brought on by COVID-19 — and they made it on The New York Times’ list of America’s favorite places to eat in 2021.
These eateries were scouted by the newsroom’s food critics, reporters and editors to “reflect the rich mosaic of American dining.”
And they sure do.
Three destinations in San Francisco made the cut.
Times food critic Tejal Rao raved about Mister Jiu’s, a Chinese-American restaurant in The Golden City, and its “casual takeout-inspired Mamahuhu.”
While you’re in the city, catch The Anchovy Bar for “glorious seafood” like anchovies, oysters, squid, octopus and clams.
Or save room for dinner at Nari — a “family-style” fine dining Thai restaurant in northeastern San Francisco.
Marshall, an unincorporated community about 50 miles north of the city, was also included in the most “vibrant and delicious” places to eat across the country.
The Marshall Store serves locally grown raw or grilled oysters, along with soups, sandwiches and local cheeses.
Multiple restaurants in Southern California also made the list of places The Times is “most excited about right now.”
Visit Pearl River Deli in Los Angeles’ Chinatown or try Kaiseki cuisine at n/naka. Mini Kabob — a “small” family-owned Armenian restaurant in Glendale — is noted for its, you guessed it, famous “mini kabob.”
Whichever place you choose, they all have one thing in common.
“All of them beckon us back to the table,” the news outlet wrote.