Padma Lakshmi’s 5 Restaurants to Try Before You Die

Spencer Cain

Yesterday, we caught up with the effortlessly stunning (and we mean stunning) Padma Lakshmi at a preview for her new jewelry collection, PL by Padma Lakshmi, which will be sold exclusively through HSN. The costume jewelry collection, which will launch on March 22, is filled with pieces inspired by vintage Chanel—and how can you go wrong with that? When chatting with Lakshmi, it’s impossible not to bring up food. After all, the “Top Chef” host certainly knows what she’s talking about. Below, Lakshmi shared five restaurants everyone must go to in their lifetime. What are you waiting for? Book a reservation!
Chez Panisse: The Berkeley , California restaurant is known for using local and organic foods, and often credited as the inspiration for the popular style of cooking now known as “California cuisine.” Lakshmi told us: “Everyone needs to go here. Its owner [Alice Waters] is the godmother of every intelligent feeling about food that we have as a culture today. More than anyone, she has not only influenced the professional culinary world, but also farming and agriculture, and the way that food is thought about as well as education, and the way we feed our children.” 1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, California;
L’Arpège: L’Arpège is a world-renowned establishment located in Paris. The chef, Alain Passard, is noted for his exquisite vegetarian and vegan options. The restaurant has had three Michelin stars since 1996. 84 Rue de Varenne, Paris, France;
L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon: Legendary chef Joël Robuchon’s Paris outpost of his restaurant is unlike any other. After all, the man defines haute cuisine—his restaurants across the world have a total of 28 Michelin stars combined, which makes that the most of any chef, ever. 133 Champs-Élysées, Paris, France;

Marea: Marea, located on the swanky Central Park South, is one of New York’s hottest tickets. Here’s why: Chef Michael White makes the most inventive seafood around. Everything from lobster to sea urchin makes the menu here. 240 Central Park South, New York, New York;

wd~50: wd~50, owned by “Top Chef” judge alum Wylie Dufresne, has become a hot ticket in New York thanks to its outrageously inventive dishes, the result of the molecular gastronomy practiced at the restaurant. Some of the menu’s dishes include bay scallop, pear and oatmeal-nori. 50 Clinton Street, New York, New York;