Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner: The Restaurants
Photo By: Buff Strickland ©Buff Strickland Photography, 2014
San Diego: Breakfast
For breakfast, Melissa d'Arabian hops into line at this popular downtown San Diego bakery for a bacon-topped maple bar or a split doughnut stuffed with strawberries and cream.
More About: Donut Bar
San Diego: Lunch
After a lunch of tacos with fillings like beer-marinated pork, seared line-caught tuna and lobster, steal Melissa's tip and have the fruit-salad appetizer for dessert.
More About: Puesto
San Diego: Dinner
For dinner, Melissa drops in on star chef Richard Blais for local seafood and the legendary Yodel dessert, made with chocolate devil's food cake.
More About: Juniper & Ivy
Beau MacMillan starts strong at this diner near Arizona State University, where the Bloody Mary comes garnished with a miniature hamburger and fried chicken is served with red velvet waffles.
More About: The Normal Diner
Beau dives into lunch sandwiches packed with fillings like slow-cooked roast beef, and eggplant Parmesan.
More About: Cafe Bink
Beau ends his ideal day of Phoenix dining with a bistro-style dinner at Christopher's, including wine-braised boudin noir and a chocolate mousse tower.
More About: Christopher's Restaurant & Crush Lounge
Los Angeles: Breakfast
When in Los Angeles, Simon Majumdar starts his day with a bagel at this old-fashioned deli in the heart of Beverly Hills.
More About: Nate 'n Al
Los Angeles: Lunch
Simon spices up his midday meal with fiery Thai dishes at Jitlada in Hollywood, eating Morning Glory Salad and the famous Crying Tiger Pork.
More About: Jitlada Restaurant
Los Angeles: Dinner
Simon caps a day in Los Angeles with dinner and drinks at this downtown restaurant, which earns raves for its Oxtail Agnolotti.
More About: Faith & Flower
San Francisco: Breakfast
Though this SoMa pub serves excellent food all day long, Elizabeth Falkner likes to start her ideal San Francisco day here with a full English breakfast.
More About: The Cavalier
San Francisco: Lunch
This Mission patisserie is Elizabeth's favorite noontime haunt for its unique breads and pastries, like a Thanksgiving-inspired turkey toaster pastry and a quince-cappuccino eclair.
More About: Craftsman and Wolves
San Francisco: Dinner
Elizabeth heads to this Italian restaurant in Pacific Heights for beautifully plated dishes that she likens to an edible "amusement park."
More About: SPQR
Aaron Franklin kicks off his days with barbacoa tacos and fresh juice at the alfresco Veracruz All Natural.
More About: Veracruz All Natural
The Brisket Sandwich at The Hightower reminds Aaron of his grandmother's cooking, which helps make it the ideal midday meal stop.
More About: The Hightower
Named for its setting — a former laundromat — this spunky diner is Aaron's favorite place to unwind.
More About: Launderette
Fruit is the name of the game at Michelle Bernstein's childhood-favorite breakfast spot. She starts with punch and a bowl of tropical fruit salad.
More About: Athens Juice Bar
Michelle loves the fresh, wild-caught fish, shrimp and octopus ceviches at this local chain, which are marinated in hand-squeezed citrus.
More About: My Ceviche
Michelle loves this Miami Beach trattoria for its ultra-fresh seafood, crisp snap-pea salad and hearty pastas.
More About: Macchialina
G. Garvin loves the family focus at this lively cafe, where he stops in the mornings for roasted garlic grits and biscuits with peppery, creamy gravy that he says is "truly Georgia gravy."
More About: West Egg Cafe
The Painted Pin could coast on its 20 bowling lanes, darts, pop-up basketball and excellent draft beers, but G. says that it's also "an incredible place for food," including waffle dogs, pizza, ranch-dusted pork rinds and a burger that he calls "righteous."
More About: The Painted Pin
This Mediterranean restaurant sets a standard for fresh seafood, including its renowned, can't-miss grilled octopus.
More About: Kyma
New Orleans: Breakfast
This neighborhood-centric coffee shop specializes in local, healthy morning meals, including multigrain breakfast sandwiches and virtuous green juice.
More About: Satsuma Cafe
New Orleans: Lunch
Regulars like John Besh never consult the menu at this storied lunchtime institution, which specializes in locally sourced French-Creole cuisine, including Poisson Meunière Amandine and a potent Sazerac.
More About: Galatoire's Restaurant
New Orleans: Dinner
This hip Bywater Chinese restaurant is John's choice for a place to unwind, preferably over crisp Crawfish Rangoon and a platter of General Lee's Chicken.
More About: Red's Chinese