In our weeklong coverage of the foods you should fly to try, we can’t help but think of how eternally grateful we are to our neighbors to the north. They’ve given the culinary world important things — Yukon gold potatoes, red McIntosh apples, for example – but, for the cheese- and fries-loving foodies we are, we’ve got to give it up for poutine above all else. A godsend to those of us who have gone a little too hard and need a late-night bite to help soak up that last Scotch of the evening, as well as a solid pick for brunch, basic poutine features French fries topped with cheese curds and dressed with brown gravy — and it’s a national treasure. Chefs there and here are offering up more elaborate versions (see the disco fries at Denville Dinerbar). But if you can’t fly to try the real thing in Canada, check out one of these restaurants for poutine in the States And don’t forget to enter our #WillFlyForFood giveaway.
Toups South, New Orleans, Louisiana
Poutine – now in po’ boy form (just as you might expect in NOLA). The poutine po’ boy from Isaac Toups has all the flavors. Made with pommes frites, chicken bologna, gravy, cheese curds, and fried eggs, it’s toups good. Make a reservation at Toups South.
Halifax, Hoboken, New Jersey
Made with Yukon gold potatoes, cheddar cheese curds, and sherry gravy, chef Seadon Shouse’s potato poutine brunch dish uses roasted Yukon gold potatoes (because Canada?) instead of French fries. They’re broken into bite-sized chunks and fried, capped with cheddar cheese curds, and broiled until the cheese is perfectly melted. To finish, Sherry gravy is poured atop. Make a reservation at Halifax.
Mon Ami Gabi, Chicago, Illinois
A luxe take on the humble hockey-fan fave, the poutine Gabi, served at brunch, features bacon, Jarlsberg, blue cheese, crème fraîche, green peppercorn sauce, and a poached egg. Make a reservation at Mon Ami Gabi.
The Original Dinerant , Portland, Oregon
Recently showcased on Food Network’s Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, The Original Dinerant’s executive chef AJ Voytko serves three (!) varieties of poutine, the most decadent of which is Shorty’s, which includes red-wine braised short ribs and cheddar cheese curds covered with rich brown gravy. Make a reservation at The Original Dinerant.
CBD Provisions, Dallas, Texas
A lot of love goes into making executive chef Coner Seargeant’s tater tot poutine. Peeled Kennebec potatoes are sous vided, shredded, compressed, and fried a golden brown. They’re then crowned with a roasty chicken gravy, herbs, a sunny side up egg, and Eagle Mountain Farmhouse Cheese aged Gouda. Make a reservation at CBD Provisions.
Dinosaur Bar-B-Que, New York, New York
There’s a barbecue flair to the dino poutine at Dinosaur Bar-B-Que. Executive chef Leland Avellino covers hand-cut fries with beef gravy, housemade pimento cheese, succulent pulled pork, pickled jalapeño, and crispy belly cracklings. Pro tip: Don’t get your cholesterol checked the next day. Make a reservation at Dinosaur Bar-B-Que.
Grayson Social, Dallas, Texas
Served in a rustic cast-iron skillet, Darlene Marcello puts a dash of Southern style on her rendition. Hand-cut fries join shaved prime rib, pepper gravy, and pimento cheese for a dish that blends the best of two cuisines. Make a reservation at Grayson Social.
UNI, Boston, Massachusetts
And now for something completely different. Chef-partner Tony Messina does poutine his way, topping housemade fries with foie gras ramen gravy, cheese curds, and green onion. Add on foie gras and black truffle supplements bring the dish to a baller level. Make a reservation at UNI.
Holsteins Shakes and Buns, Las Vegas, Nevada
Las Vegas means late nights — or never-ending ones – so chef de cuisine Robert Acros offers a feast for diners weary from poppin’ bottles. Fries are smothered with the requisite curd, shredded short rib, and stout gravy. The egg is optional, but not in our opinion. Make a reservation at Holsteins Shakes and Buns.
Have a favorite picture of a food you flew to try? Share with us to enter OpenTable’s #WillFlyforFood social media contest; for full details, click here. Prize includes dinner for two at the legendary Pujol restaurant in Mexico City, a walking culinary tour of Mexico City, round-trip airfare and three nights of hotel accommodations for two. To enter, share a photo of a delicious dish you flew for. Post it on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter, or visit our blog for more options and tell us where else you dream of flying for your next culinary adventure. And, if entering on Instagram or Twitter, be sure to follow and tag @OpenTable and use the hashtag #willflyforfood so your entry is visible.
Photo credits: Anjali Pinto (Mon Ami Gabi); Andrea Merrill (UNI).