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San Francisco Voted the Best U.S. Airport for Food in 2023

A new ranking praises the airport’s nearly 70 dining options as being "representative of the Bay Area's vibrant culinary scene"

by Fergus Cole

April 20, 2023

Photo: Courtesy of San Francisco International Airport.

Food & Wine magazine has just unveiled the top ten airports for food in the United States. Amidst a plethora of fabulous food options, San Francisco International Airport (SFO) emerged victorious and claimed the coveted top spot.

The publication’s inaugural reader’s choice awards, Food & Wine Global Tastemakers 2023, have been the talk of the town this week, with enthusiastic foodies anxiously waiting to discover which airports made the cut.

The magazine’s discerning readership reviewed and rated airports nationwide, ultimately selecting the ten most exceptional culinary havens guaranteed to tantalize your taste buds.

Photo: Courtesy of San Francisco International Airport.

San Francisco International Airport was praised for its almost 70 dining options across its four terminals, which Food & Wine described as “representative of the Bay Area’s vibrant culinary scene.”

The magazine gave special mention to several eateries which helped cement SFO’s position as the best airport for food in the U.S., including a branch of the city’s famous and hugely popular Boudin Bakery, Terminal 2’s Cat Cora’s Kitchen – a Mediterranean-inspired restaurant named after the celebrity chef who created it – and Mustards Bar & Grill, a self-described “fancy rib joint” and sister restaurant of the long-time Napa Valley landmark.

Photo: Courtesy of San Francisco International Airport.

Other notable mentions went to seafood specialists Yankee Pier in Terminal 3, legendary dim sum joint Koi Palace, personalized coffee shop Roasting Plant Coffee, and Napa Farms Market, a seasonal restaurant championing local produce with two locations at SFO.

“We are truly thrilled that SFO has been named the Best Airport for Food in America,” said Ivar C. Satero, Airport Director at San Francisco International. “Our concessions team has worked hard to create a dining experience rich in diversity, combining Bay Area favorites with globally-recognized brands. Being honored by the readers of such an established culinary publication is the ultimate validation of our staff’s efforts.”

Here are the top ten airports for food in the U.S. in 2023, according to Food & Wine:

  1. San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
  2. Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL)
  3. Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP)
  4. Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (MSY)
  5. Portland International Airport (PDX)
  6. Tampa International Airport (TPA)
  7. Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA)
  8. Nashville International Airport (BNA)
  9. Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS)
  10. Detroit Metropolitan Airport (DTW)

While San Francisco can now claim to have the best airport for food in the country, London Heathrow Airport (LHR) can make that claim internationally, coming top of Food & Wine‘s top 5 international airports for food.

This was followed by Vancouver International Airport (YVR) in second place, Munich International Airport (MUC) in third, and Dublin Airport (DUB) and Reykavík-Keflavík International Airport (KEF) in fourth and fifth place, respectively.

Other awards in the Food & Wine Global Tastemakers 2023 include the best hotels for food in the U.S. and internationally, the best hotel bars in the U.S., and the best cruises for food.

While Vermont’s Twin Farms Resort & Spa was named the best U.S. hotel for food and had the best hotel bar in the U.S., the best international hotel for food was determined to be the Beaverbrook Estate in Surrey, England.

Photo: Qatar Airways meze appetizer, served on the airline’s long-haul flights. Courtesy of Andy Luten

Airlines were also given their categories, with Qatar Airways being named the best international airline for food, followed by Emirates and Virgin Atlantic. In terms of domestic carriers, Hawaiian Airlines was named the best, followed by Delta Air Lines, Alaska Airlines, JetBlue, and United Airlines.

Finally, the magazine published lists of the best cities for food, both in the U.S. and internationally. So, any food lovers still yet to decide where to go on their next city break, whether it be a short weekend within the States or a longer trip abroad, may want to consider the following destinations:

Best cities for food in the U.S. in 2023:

  1. New York
  2. New Orleans
  3. San Francisco
  4. Los Angeles
  5. Portland, Oregon
  6. Chicago
  7. Charleston
  8. Miami
  9. San Diego
  10. Austin

Best international cities for food in 2023:

  1. Mexico City, Mexico
  2. Tokyo, Japan
  3. San Sebastián, Spain
  4. Tel Aviv, Israel
  5. Madrid, Spain
  6. Paris, France
  7. Copenhagen, Denmark
  8. Lisbon, Portugal
  9. San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
  10. Rome, Italy