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The Restaurants I Need to Visit Straight From the Airport

Runway-to-restaurant jaunts, Alex Atala’s new eatery, and other news in this weekly roundup from the editor

Franklin Barbecue
Bill Addison

This post originally appeared in Amanda Kludt’s newsletter “From the Editor,” a roundup of her favorite food and restaurant stories — both on and off Eater — each week. Read the archives and subscribe now.

There’s something so intensely special about going to a restaurant directly from an airport when traveling. The intensity of needing the food so badly you don’t have time to stop and drop off your bags or shower or check your email. The sense of urgency it adds to your day and meal. The feeling of initiating yourself into a city by having the food you crave as soon as humanly possible.

This weekend I’m in Austin for chef Aaron Franklin’s new food and music festival Hot Luck, and I went straight from the airport to the opening party at Franklin Barbecue, shoving my weekend bag and jacket under a bench, letting the smoke scent seep into them. I did it out of necessity because my flight was delayed and I was a party host, but it reminded me of all those other runway-to-restaurant-seat jaunts. In Nashville, I go straight to Arnold’s Country Kitchen from the plane, luggage in tow. In Portland, it’s Nong’s chicken and rice. In New Orleans, it’s Cochon Butcher. On my recent trip to Napa, I went directly to Molino Central and will gladly make it a regular tradition. I’m going to Paris and London next month and need to figure out what my move is there.

What about you? What’s the place you have to get to before attending to any other need after you land? I’d love to hear about it; email me at

Opening of the Week: Bio

Who is behind it? Brazilian chef and Chef’s Table star Alex Atala.

What is it?: Atala’s biggest (at 140 seats) and most casual restaurant. It’s an all-day eatery with a salad station, an open kitchen with a charcoal grill, and a bar where diners can order cocktails and artisanal sodas made with fruit skins and vegetable peels.

Where is it?: São Paulo.

When did it open?: Earlier this week.

Why should I care?: Atala is a pretty big deal in general, but this project is especially interesting because he challenged Bio’s culinary crew to find a use for things they used to throw away, reducing the food waste to virtually zero. Head chef Raul Godoy and pastry chef Platinni Vieira have created recipes that use typically overlooked components like avocado pits and herb stems. “We have spent more than five months developing the recipes to make sure we could use even more parts of the ingredients [than] we thought [...] would be possible,” Godoy told Eater this week.

Helena de Castro

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