DINING WITH THE STARS: TRIPADVISOR SERVES UP AMERICA'S TOP 10 CELEBRITY-OWNED RESTAURANTS
Legendary Actors, Athletes and Musicians Headline Best Star-Endorsed Dining
NEWTON, Mass. — April 20, 2010 /PRNewswire/ — TripAdvisor®, the world's most popular and largest travel community, today announced its top ten celebrity-owned restaurants in the U.S., according to TripAdvisor editors and travelers. Travelers star-ving for mouth-watering main dishes served with a side of fame can enjoy these prime celeb-endorsed eateries that boast average approval ratings of 86 percent by TripAdvisor travelers.
In addition to earning traveler recommendations, the top ten celebrity-owned eateries in the U.S. beat TripAdvisor's average restaurant ratings for atmosphere and food, earn equal marks for service, but fall short on value.
1. Taste of Tokyo in Tribeca: Nobu, New York City, New York
Recommended by TripAdvisor travelers for: Doing Business, Special Occasions
In 1994, a culinary powerhouse was born when silver screen legend Robert DeNiro partnered with Chef Nobuyuki Matsuhisa to open a modern Japanese restaurant in Tribeca. While there are currently 21 Nobu restaurants around the globe, the flagship New York City location remains the top-ranked among them for its dazzling array of sushi and sashimi, combined with innovative entrees like the black cod with miso. One TripAdvisor traveler observed, "Each plate that came out left you wanting for more and wondering what the next dish would be. This is a must visit in NYC."
2. All-Star American in the Windy City: one sixtyblue, Chicago, Illinois
Recommended by TripAdvisor travelers for: Bar Scene, Doing Business, Special Occasions
Although basketball icon Michael Jordan owns several restaurants and steakhouses in the greater New York area, his Chicago spot is a slam dunk with travelers for its sophisticated cuisine. Located in the West Loop neighborhood, unique entrees include chorizo stuffed squid, bacon-wrapped rabbit saddle and English pea ravioli, plus a highly rated bar menu for those watching their wallets. As one TripAdvisor traveler recalled, "This is a great place to take that ‘special person' in your life. The experience will leave a lasting memory."
3. Perfect Pub Faire in the Big Apple: P.J. Clarke's, New York City, New York
Recommended by TripAdvisor travelers for: Atmosphere, Dining on a Budget
With roots dating back to 1884, Manhattan tavern P.J. Clarke's welcomed actor Timothy Hutton as a partner in 2002. Frequented by famous faces throughout the years, including Frank Sinatra and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, P.J. Clarke's is recommended by travelers for its bustling atmosphere and outstanding burgers. As shared by one TripAdvisor traveler, "According to the legend, the pay phone is still ‘Out of Order,' the broken cigarette machine remains broken, and the ashes of one of the favorite patrons still reside behind the bar. What more can you ask."
4. Visions of Vietnam in the Bay Area: Ana Mandara, San Francisco, California
Recommended by TripAdvisor travelers for: Large Groups, Outdoor Seating
Though Hollywood stars Don Johnson and Cheech Marin opened Ana Mandara while filming the television program Nash Bridges, the dynamic duo remains connected through their joint investment in this successful Bay Area eatery. Located on Fisherman's Wharf, Ana Mandara distinguishes itself with cuisine inspired by Chef Khai Doung's native village of Nha Trang, including Vietnamese braised korobuta pork belly and Mekong Delta prawns. Raved one TripAdvisor traveler, "The food was so delicious we almost returned the next day for a repeat – it was THAT good."
5. Lively Latin in LA: Beso, Los Angeles, California
Recommended by TripAdvisor travelers for: Atmosphere
When developing the concept for Beso with celebrity chef Todd English, TV star Eva Longoria proved that she can hold her own in the kitchen by adding a few recipes to the menu. Foodies can pit her avocado guacamole against English's artichoke version, while enjoying Latin-inspired steak and seafood entrees in a chic environment. Considering the frequent visits from Eva and hoopster husband Tony Parker with their famous friends, it's no surprise that one TripAdvisor traveler sat down to dinner and a show; "Star sightings included Eric Benet, Christina Milian, Ludacris and Jaleel White."
6. A-List Soul Food in the ATL: Gladys Knight and Ron Winans' Chicken & Waffles, Atlanta, Georgia
Recommended by TripAdvisor travelers for: Local Cuisine
Inspired by the legendary Wells Supper Club in Harlem, the Empress of Soul Gladys Knight, along with her son Shanga Hankerson and friend Ron Winans, opened their first chicken and waffle joint in Atlanta in 1997. Now with four locations, the chain serves up soul food classics like shrimp and grits and fried green tomatoes, in addition to their namesake fried chicken and waffles. As noted by one TripAdvisor traveler, "Inside, the place was pretty classy, not what I was expecting from a chicken and waffles joint, but definitely from a Gladys Knight restaurant!"
7. Comfort Classics in Sundance: Zoom, Park City, Utah
Recommended by TripAdvisor travelers for: Romance, Doing Business, Outdoor Seating
Featuring casually elegant American cuisine, acting and environmental legend Robert Redford's Zoom whips up delicious food while playing tribute to Park City's history. Housed in the former Union Pacific railroad depot, travelers are smitten with the restaurant's vintage charm and unique dishes like the warm jalapeño crab dip, buffalo osso buco and pecan-cornmeal crusted trout filet. According to one TripAdvisor traveler, "Loved the eclectic food, attentive service, and interesting atmosphere."
8. Playful Bar Bites in Phoenix: Alice Cooper's Town Sports Bar & Grill, Phoenix, Arizona
Recommended by TripAdvisor travelers for: Bar Scene, Dining on a Budget
Famously theatrical rocker Alice Cooper translated his over-the-top personality into a Phoenix sports bar and grill. Dubbed, "Where Jocks and Rock Meet," Cooper's place shows off servers with "Alice Eyes" face paint and entrees named after famous athletes and celebrities, such as Tedy Bruschi, Kid Rock and even Vanna White. As described by one TripAdvisor traveler, "Far more than just another restaurant, Alice's place is an eclectic rock museum and sports museum rolled into one. You could spend hours here just checking out all of the history that surrounds you."
9. Classic Italian in North Beach: Cafe Zoetrope, San Francisco, California
Recommended by TripAdvisor travelers for: Service, Atmosphere, Outdoor Seating
Located in the historic Sentinel Building in North Beach, famous director and vintner Francis Ford Coppola's Cafe Zoetrope dishes out Italian cuisine in a cozy space adorned with personally collected movie memorabilia. In addition to recommending the outdoor seating, travelers report immediate ‘amore,' upon digging into the meatball pizza and house specialty Caesar salad. One TripAdvisor traveler remarked, "Would one expect anything other than the best from Mr. Coppola? Excellent food and service. Definitely worth a special trip."
10. Down-Home Cookin' in Manhattan: Southern Hospitality BBQ, New York City, New York
Recommended by TripAdvisor travelers for: Food, Service
A native of Memphis, Tennessee, pop star Justin Timberlake's latest restaurant venture, Southern Hospitality, brings his down-home roots and passion for barbeque to New York City. It's no secret that Justin's celebrity status attracts travelers to the restaurant, but tasty nibbles like fried pickles, dry rub ribs and pulled pork keep them coming back for more. One TripAdvisor traveler said, "We went to Southern Hospitality mainly because Justin Timberlake is one of the owners but I have to say it was one of the best meals we've had in NY."
"These restaurants highlight another way stars have won over their fans – through their stomachs," said Christine Petersen, chief marketing officer for TripAdvisor. "Though we've seen a number of celebrity restaurant busts in the past decade, these famous restaurateurs have thrived by showing a strong commitment to star-quality food and service."
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