Food + Wine

American Food

by JANE AND MICHAEL STERN
Having spent the last 25 years driving 4,000,000 miles around America and eating 72,427 meals, this we know for sure: America is a culinary crazy-quilt of unique dishes beloved by locals but little known to outsiders. There is no better way to experience this nation's incredible diversity than to hit the road, drive past the malls stuffed with Outbacks and Applebees, and seek out the local specialties (though we'll kindly skip vinegar-steamed chitlins in southern Virginia, thank you). Here are our secret finds—all prime summer fare—from Maine lobster rolls to New Mexico's green chile cheeseburgers.

Published June 2006

Jane and Michael Stern write a monthly food column for Gourmet, and their current book is Two for the Road: Our Love Affair with American Food. To read more about their favorite spots to eat, visit roadfood.com.
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