GQ names an Austin restaurant one of 10 Best New Restaurants in America

GQ correspondent and restaurant critic Brett Martin debuted his 10 Best New Restaurants in America list today, his second for the magazine, and Austin izakaya-smokehouse hybrid Kemuri Tatsu-ya made the list. Martin loved the “surreal pastiche of Japanese-Texan kitsch, a saloon out of a Quentin Tarantino fever dream.” Among the food he praised, the chili-cheese takoyaki, which perfectly captures the spirit of the Texas-Japanese mash-up.

Brisket at Kemuri. (Ricardo B. Brazziell AMERICAN-STATESMAN)

Martin’s piece isn’t just a rote list. It offers a narrative about the state of dining in America right now (as well as the state of America).  One of my favorite anecdotes from Martin is about the hive-mindedness of restaurants:

My brother, who is a doctor but also an expert backyard smoker, has long mused about leaving medicine behind to open a combination pastrami/ice cream stand. This year a pop-up serving exactly that opened. Two blocks from his house. In the back of a sex shop.

For the complete list, head to

For my recent review of Kemuri Tatsu-ya, head here. 

Author: Matthew Odam

Restaurant critic & features writer at Austin American @Statesman and @Austin360. Austin-born 6th generation Texan. Left-handed.

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