The Unvegan

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The Best of 2016
The Best of 2015
The Best of 2014
The Best of 2012

The Best of 2013

Trying to make the cut.
Trying to make the cut.

2014 is here, but my 2013 may have been the best year of eating in the history of the world, so it’s time for another Unvegan Best of. The past year included a honeymoon, an epic month-long road trip and a move from Los Angeles to Pittsburgh, so my list has broadened beyond LA and narrowing down the awesome was quite the process. Nonetheless, I encourage you all to go back through my Reviews section to see what didn’t quite make the cut. Remember that the list only includes places new to The Unvegan and bear in mind that Honorable Nods this year would probably be winners any other year. Without further ado:

Best Burger

unvegan plan checkPlan Check (Los Angeles)

Double cheese, double bacon and an egg and patty cooked to perfection made the Chefs Favorite burger a winner in a very tightly contested category.

Honorable Nods to Edgewood Corner Tavern (Atlanta) and Matt’s Bar (Minneapolis)

Best BBQ

unvegan the smoke joint 1The Smoke Joint (Brooklyn)

Don’t waste time thinking about what to order. Just order everything. And the Beef Ribs.

Honorable Nod to YinzBurgh BBQ (Pittsburgh)

Best Steak

unvegan delmonico steakhouse 5

Delmonico Steakhouse (Las Vegas)

The Bone-in Ribeye here is like butter, which may be because it is cooked in butter, but I don’t care.

Honorable Nod to Taylor’s Steak House (Los Angeles)

Best Wings

unvegan buffalo blues 1Buffalo Blues (Pittsburgh)

I admit that these wings earn extra points because of their Buffalo Blue Fries, but the wings are still quite delicious.

Honorable Nod to Hot’s Kitchen (Los Angeles)

Best Hot Dog

unvegan franktuary 3Franktuary (Pittsburgh)

Grass-fed, snappy and with all sorts of good toppings, as long as you go with hot dogs, you can’t go wrong here.

Best Sandwich

unevgan joey broadwayJoey Broadway (Vancouver)

Somehow, Joey Broadway made an adult grilled cheese without ruining all the joy that comes with that most comforting of foods.

Honorable Nods to Primanti Brothers (Pittsburgh) and Philippe’s (Los Angeles)

Best Pizza

unvegan mercato di vetroMercato di Vetro (Los Angeles)

Blackberries and bacon on pizza. What could go wrong? Nothing. Absolutely nothing.

Honorable Nod to Lucifer’s Pizza (Los Angeles)

Best Breakfast/Brunch

unvegan zingerman's roadhouse 4

Zingerman’s Roadhouse (Ann Arbor)

Grits and bacon in a waffle. If anyone still thinks Zingerman’s is just about sandwiches, it’s time to get to the Roadhouse.

Honorable Nod to Pamela’s (Pittsburgh)

Best ‘Merican (Formerly Gastropub)

unvegan north end caffe 4North End Caffe (Los Angeles)

Everything this place churns out is gold (including their spelling of Caffe) and the staff there know it and love it even more than the customers do.

Honorable Nod to Buckhead Diner (Atlanta)

Best Mexican

unvegan mexicali 1Mexicali (Los Angeles)

Somehow Mexicali found a way to innovate Mexican food to a level Taco Bell still hasn’t thought of.

Honorable Nod to Leo’s Taco Truck (Los Angeles)

Best Random Ethnic (by region)


unvegan arnold's 1Arnold’s (Cape Town)

Best warthog ribs ever.


unvegan night + market 4

Night + Market (Los Angeles)

The Thai you’d eat if you were Thai.


unvegan point brugge 1Point Brugge (Pittsburgh)

Belgian Fries FTW!

Middle Eastern

unvegan cafe turkoCafe Turko (Seattle)

The touch, the feel of Turkey. In Seattle.

South/Central American

unvegan peru chix 2Peru Chix (Los Angeles)

Who knew Torrance was a hotbed of Peruvian delights?

For 2013 Only:

Best Place to Stop on a Coastal Drive

We have a tie!

unvegan splash cafe 1Splash Cafe (Pacific Coast Highway)

The best damn chowder.


unvegan chapmans peak hotel 2Chapman’s Peak Hotel (Chapman’s Peak Drive)

The best damn calamari.

And that’s a wrap. Meanwhile, you can also check out 2012 and 2011 for more listage.