Best restaurants of 2021: Tacos x Mezcal gives street food a gourmet twist | Dining

Radish, 1730 S. Boston Ave.: “Midwesterranean” food that brings some Okie flair to Mediterranean cuisine. Superb roast chicken, pita sandwiches and mezze treats. Pictured: The Mediterranean Cobb Salad can be topped with roasted chicken, falafel or gyro meat.

918 Maples Cafe & Catering, 8151 E. 21st St.: Excellent birria tacos headline a wide-ranging menu at this small restaurant.

Cherry Street Kitchen, 111 W. Fifth St.: Relocated from its original 15th Street location, the new Cherry Street Kitchen offers an expanded menu as well as full bar service.

Day Break Cafe, 8178 S. Lewis Ave.: Fans of the old First Watch will find most of their favorites, as well as some new twists, at this breakfast-and-lunch restaurant.

Brick Bros. Pizza, 2 W. Dawes Ave., Bixby: Quality ingredients, unique combinations and a brick oven make for such excellent pizza, well worth the trip south.

Inheritance Juicery, 108 S. Detroit Ave.: Healthy libations are the star here, but the lunch menu is full of vegan-forward items.

Calaca Fresh Mexican, 6902 S. Lewis Ave.; 3202 S. Sheridan Road: California-style Mexican food — the rice and beans are good enough to order by themselves.

Gambill’s Wine & Coffee, 1102 S. Lewis Ave.: Spanish-style tapas and coffee preparations, as well as local, national and international wines.

Curds & Whey, 1124 S. Lewis Ave.: Chef Faith Walker describes what she does as “sophisticated comfort food,” with such items as the Very Berry Salad and the Cali Girl ($13) with fresh avocado, candied bacon and a zesty ranch; topping great fries.

Salt & Vinegar, 1124 S. Lewis Ave.: Few places are recommended for their Brussels sprouts, but few places make them the way Salt & Vinegar does, frying and seasoning them into a sweet and tangy treat. The rest of the menu’s pretty good as well.

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Two more Shore restaurants have closed their doors

The first week of 2022 has been a rough one for New Jersey’s restaurants, which are battling staffing shortages, COVID-19 exposures, supply chain issues, rising costs and much more. Since the weekend, Eli’s Hot Bagels, in business in Aberdeen since 1974, and Bordentown Township’s Mastoris Diner & Restaurant, which has […]