Can you keep a secret? We can’t. The USA is full of hidden foodie delights and we can’t keep them quiet anymore. From sandwich shops found in Irish boozers to tapas bars hidden behind gas stations, the USA has an abundance of undercover restaurants just waiting to be stumbled upon. Speakeasies aren’t secret enough for us anymore, with the help of this blog you’ll be able to avoid the obvious like Five Guys and discover a few authentic gems to feast on!
Grab your knife and fork, it’s time to dig in.
Killer Poboys – New Orleans
Alcohol makes food taste better. FACT. That’s exactly what Killer Poboys thought when they opened their undercover po’boy shop inside a bar. Oh how rude of us, a po’boy is a sandwich unique to Louisiana – but as the name would suggest, these ones are particularly killer! Sure you could always line up at Parkway, but make life more interesting, go covert and taste the international twist on these iconic sandwiches.
What to order: Try the Guinness and garlic-braised beef with horseradish aioli (Yum!) or the prawn with coriander and lime, served with a banh mi influence (It’s Vietnamese. Look it up.) The bar has an Irish vibe so wash your po’boy down with a glug of Gaelic whiskey.
Katipunan Menu at Jeepney – New York City
Get ready to parachute full throttle into Manila. Jeepney takes its name from jeeps left behind by US troops in WW2, the Filipinos took over the jeeps, gave them an eye catching make-over and thus their uniqueness was born. History lesson over, that unique Filipino vibe is what makes this East Village hot-spot so tempting.
Walk ins on #KamayanNight (every Weds & Thurs) are treated to our prix fixe Chef’s Tasting. For your last minute dinner plans, gather your friends (parties of four or more) and experience our traditional “hands only” Filipino banquet!
A photo posted by Jeepney Filipino Gastropub (@jeepneynyc) on
What to order: Bat away those menus thrust into your hands and go for the Katipunan menu, off the list and completely hush-hush. Just say the word ‘Katipunan’ (kah-tee-poo-nan) to the waiter, he’ll give you a knowing wink* and take your order. Try the barbecued tuna collar or the ‘birthday surprise’ (marshmallows and hot dogs. Random.) or fresh Manila clams.
*knowing wink not guaranteed.
Safe House – Milwaukee
The ORIGINAL secret restaurant. Before it was cool to be a secret, there was Safe House in Milwaukee. The whole vibe is very much ‘James Bond-esque’, themed around old spy movies and mysterious history. After you’ve found the unmarked door, you’ll need the password to get in. Luckily for your sake, if you don’t know the password you can complete a secret mission to gain access. Once in, you’ll enter through a genuine KGB prison door. Mission complete.
What to order: Licensed to Kill Cheese Macaroni. That name is golden. Or a unique Martini which is shaken not stirred by traveling through a tube around the restaurant. Love it.
El Carajo – Miami
You thought Safe House was hidden, then El Carajo has gone full incognito with a fake mustache and secret identity. You’ll find this beautiful gem of a wine and tapas bar at the BP gas station on 17th Ave in Miami. Step inside the ‘Food & Deli store’ and you’ll be surrounded by over 2,000 wines from around the world and as much chorizo and ceviche as you can eat!
A photo posted by El Carajo (@theelcarajo) on
What to order: Chorizo El Vino aka sausage sautéed in their specialty red wine and Paella, paella and more paella!
The Blue Plate – San Francisco
Not necessarily a secret but Blue Plate is one of San Fran’s most underrated restaurants. Often overlooked because of its out-of-town location, this is a cozy spot with a very local vibe. Renowned for its meatloaf but don’t be fooled this comfort food menu is full of surprises! Founded in 1999 by two college pals who knew nothing about starting a restaurant, Blue Plate has grown into a classic hang-out in the neighborhood.
What to order: Go for the artichoke risotto or slow-cooked short ribs. Deeee. Lish.
The Little Door – Los Angeles
Step away from the glare of Hollywood and into a French fairy tale. Voted one of the most romantic restaurants in LA, the Little Door is an idyllic escape situated in an elegant courtyard serving fresh Mediterranean cuisine. It’s the perfect place to take a date and you might spot the likes of Jennifer Aniston and Robert Pattinson escaping the bright lights of LA as well.
What to order: Try the Mediterranean white sea bass and saffron espelette sauce, it’s as tasty as it sounds.