When someone talks about the best restaurants in America, it’s usually filled with places that are found in bustling urban centers up and down the east and west coast and along the Gul Coast. While eateries in NYC, Portland, LA, Nola, Houston, and Miami are almost always deserving of their accolades, it means too many restaurants found within the land-locked states get overlooked. As a result, all the cafes, diners, and fine-dining found in the West, Southwest, and Midwest don’t get the kind of attention they deserve.
With that in mind, here are 15 of the best restaurants out there that may be miles away from an ocean coastline, but offer up some of the best food in the nation — ranging from traditional to progressive and everything in-between.
Historic Oark General Store & Cafe – Oark, AR
Originally opened back in 1890, The General Store & Cafe was originally designed to provide groceries for the isolated community of Oark, AR. While they still keep a few staples on hand, including gasoline, it’s evolved into a full-service restaurant over the years. The menu is simple, consisting of burgers, sandwiches, and milkshakes. But they’re not afraid to test customers’ taste buds with some spicier offerings like The Angry Hornet burger, which comes with grilled jalapenos and chipotle mayo.
Juniper Valley Ranch – Colorado Springs, CO
This well-hidden gem, found just a few miles south of Colorado Springs, has been in the same family for four generations. They do little-to-no advertising, instead making a name for themselves with a cozy atmosphere, family-style cooking, and a menu that hasn’t changed since it opened back in 1951.
Juniper does close down in the winter time, but don’t worry, it’s set to re-open by the end of March.