On Our Plate: 100 Hottest Restaurants in the U.S.; Ramps Are Here; Austin Restaurant Week; Where Mad Men’s Don Draper Should Dine in Season 5

Apropos of nothing in this article, I really love the dress Bethany wore on this episode of Mad Men.

Happenings on and around OpenTable…

* We’re celebrating the 2012 Diners’ Choice Awards for Top 100 Hot Spot Restaurants. How many hot spots have you dined at?

* Where will Don Draper dine during Mad Men’s fifth season? We take ten guesses.

* This week’s restaurant review trend? Ramps!

* Do you view the menu before dining at a restaurant? Let us know in this week’s poll!

* Did you send the Tweet of the WeekFind out.

* Reserve to Dine out to fight AIDS at select DenverMinneapolisPhiladelphiaSan DiegoSan Francisco, and Washington, D.C.  restaurants on April 26th!

* Restaurant Weeks in Austin, Boston, Hudson Valley, Portsmouth and Talbot County are happening now. Don’t miss your chance to dine out for less in your city.

* Restaurant reservations are now available for additional Restaurant Weeks, including Atlanta Hotel, DetroitLong Island, Main Line, and Seattle.

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Trending on Recent OpenTable Reviews: Ramps

Pickled ramps are a popular way to extend the season for this spring plant.

Spring officially sprung last week, and one of its hallmark ingredients that most excites chefs and diners alike are ramps. Also known as wild leeks, garlicky ramps can be served dozens of different ways. Actually, there are probably hundreds of ways to enjoy them. See what diners are saying about ramps in select OpenTable reviews from the last seven days!

* Alligator Soul, Atlanta, Georgia: “The rabbit five ways was a treat well tied together with dirty rice and served with crisp haricot verts and ramps.”

* Island Creek Oyster Bar, Boston, Massachusetts: “My Maine halibut on risotto, fresh english peas, muscadine grapes and grilled ramps was the star! Every bite was like velvet and such fresh spring flavor.”

Maialino, New York, New York: “Pasta was sublime (made with fresh ramps). Meat dishes were good. Chicken was actually better than their signature pork. Will return.”

* MarketHouse, Chicago, Illinois: “The dishes used a very good variety of seasonal ingredients to come up with flavorful results. They just started their spring menu and the wild ramps were excellent.”

* Naha, Chicago, Illinois: “Two ramps sitting on top [of my rib eye] were the most tasty component.”

Top Chef D.C. Episode 10: Not-So-Brilliant Disguise

"I'm not sure that wd-420 would have been a better name, Padma."

My DVR didn’t need to work this week as I was watching live. No Memorex for me, baby. Future (C’mon, Bravo!) cheftestant Ed Hardy and I were IMing throughout. And, just like last week, we’re sharing our convo about everyone’s fave cooking contest.

Hey, Ed…first thoughts at beginning of this episode…is Alex going down? And, would you just do your best to not help him in the kitchen?

I absolutely think Alex will be going down. Everyone thinks only the food matters the most in a kitchen, but, in reality, relationships are important. No matter what your culinary ability you can always use a little help. Alex has obviously done nothing on-screen or off-screen to endear himself with his fellow cheftestants. I would have given him that can opener he was looking for, but only after freezing it in a block of ice first.

Is Angelo sincere? He’s all “Kenny was the biggest threat,” but he hated him. Are these crocodile tears — or good editing?

More than anything else, Kenny going home might have damaged Angelo’s bravado. Remember the old Angelo from Episode 1 when he wanted to be the first cheftestant to win every challenge? Where has he gone? When Kenny left he might have taken some of Angelo’s confidence with him, and so, in a way, he might miss him. A bit.

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