The Definitive Guide to America’s Favorite Airport Restaurants
GateGuru has created an open forum where travelers can finally voice their opinion on airport amenities, and that is exactly what people have done. To the tune of 35,000 reviews! But we don’t want to keep those opinions bottled up just within GateGuru. Rather we want to free them to the general public so that everybody has access to the knowledge that is contained within GateGuru.
To do that we are going to start publishing the most authoritative list on everything airports. Best dining, best lounges, best shops, heck best AIRPORTS!
To start, we have put together the Definitive Guide to America’s Favorite Airport Restaurants. From casual to formal, this comprehensive list will serve as your guide to airport gastronomy. So on your next trip, don’t forget to consult GateGuru to see if a favorite Airport restaurant is going to be in your airport or terminal. Happy travels!
25) Interstate Barbecue (Memphis Airport, Gate B14) - 33 reviews, 4.2 stars
The Quick Summary:“I wasn’t planning on eating in the airport but the smell of this place was killing me.” Quick service, good prices, and great old fashioned Memphis BBQ. Extremely generous with the sauce, this is southern hospitality at its best.
What the flyers are saying: BBQ Spaghetti. Sounds a little strange, but it’s a specialty of this place and you have to try it.
Best tip: don’t neglect the sides! Potato salad and cole slaw are a must
24) Ufood Grill (Dallas-Fort Worth Airport, Gate B8) - 21 reviews, 4.6 stars
The Quick Summary: Tofu, bison burger, unfries (baked fries), steamed brocolli, egg white breakfast burrito, acai smoothie. Not exactly what you expect to see at an airport restaurant but it all tastes good here! Allergies? Not a problem as everything is clearly marked with ingredients.
What the flyers are saying: “safe, tasty, and healthy food options for everyone.”
Best tip: calories are listed so you can be sure you are making the best selection for you
23) Shapiro’s Delicatessen (Indianapolis Airport, Gate B14) - 28 reviews, 4.5 stars
The Quick Summary:Although tinier than its downtown location, this place still packs all the great tastes into the sandwiches. As one New Yorker said, he was extremely reluctant to try the Rueben but glad he did, as he would “recommend it absolutely.”
What the flyers are saying: “the best Jewish Deli in the Midwest”
Best tip: must get it on rye, “seeing them hand-slice fresh rye bread just made me smile.”
22) Silver Diner (Baltimore/Washington Airport, Food Court) - 31 reviews, 4.5 stars
The Quick Summary:A true diner, something for everyone. Located right at the top of the gates, a very good typical diner with better quality than you’d expect. Excellent service, fair prices, and a 60s throw back feel with mini jukeboxes at each table , this place is well worth the visit.
What the flyers are saying: “Best milkshakes!”
Best tip: don’t have time to sit? Try the to-go kiosk
21) Urban Taco (Dallas-Fort Worth Airport, Gate C22) - 55 reviews, 4.4 stars
The Quick Summary:Breakfast lunch or dinner, this spot has something for every meal of the day. Don’t let the food court location fool you, skip the fast food locations for this “tasty beyond tasty” Mexican food. Signature rice bowls, tacos, or seven-layer salad for a healthy option, you will leave here happy.
What the flyers are saying: a little pricey but well worth it
Best tip: don’t try to eat this on your lap while at your gate, but you can bring it on the plane with you!
20) Chick-fil-A (Atlanta Airport, Gate A10) - 52 reviews, 4.4 stars
The Quick Summary: Limited menu but still the best chicken in the world. Even with long lines and weary travelers, this place gets it done. No lemonade but can’t pass up the sweet tea. Looking for a healthier option? Go with the char grilled chicken garden salad.
What the flyers are saying: “Any layover in ATL must include a pilgrimage to the almighty delicious chick-fil-a”
Best tip: “always ask for extra pickles”
19) The Salt Lick (Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, Food Court) - 30 reviews, 4.6 stars
The Quick Summary:Looking for some genuine Texas food at the airport? Look no further. Great brisket, turkey, sausage, and a stuffed potato the “size of your head.” Beware, you will be offered money for a bite if you take this on the plane with you.
What the flyers are saying: “The restaurant is world famous for its BBQ and the little shack at the airport lives up to its name.”
Best tip: Get a plate order instead of a sandwich – much easier to eat.
18) Café Intermezzo (Atlanta Airport, Centerpoint) - 69 reviews, 4.5 stars
The Quick Summary: An oasis in the midst of fast food junk in the world’s busiest airport. Soup, salad, sandwiches, pasta, sandwiches and treats, the atmosphere here really makes you feel like you are sitting in a café. With two pages of tea options and lobster ravioli, you wouldn’t believe it until you experience it for yourself. Don’t have time to sit? Take it to go.
What the flyers are saying: “So relaxing I almost missed my flight!” Enjoy, but don’t let this happen to you!
Best tip: try the black bean burger
17) Pappadeaux Seafood Kitchen (George Bush Intercontinental Airport, Gate E4) - 39 reviews, 4.6 stars
The Quick Summary: Come with a big appetite cause the portions here aren’t small. If you’re looking for Cajun and Creole, this is your place. Not a fan of spicy, they have something for everyone; if you want healthy get your dish grilled with veggies, very gluten free friendly. Lastly, you can’t beat the lunch buffet, great price and solves the problem of having too many good things to choose from.
What the flyers are saying: “Hands down the best airport dining deal anywhere.”
Best tip: “Awesome alligator.” ‘Nuf said!
16) Nonna Bartolotta (General Mitchell Airport, Gate D38) - 24 reviews, 4.7 stars
The Quick Summary:Keeping true to the Bartalotta’s chain of restaurants, you will only find excellent food and service at this airport location. Whether sitting at the bar (Spotted Cow on tap) or in the “patio” area across from the main restaurant, you won’t be disappointed with pasta or pizza here.
What the flyers are saying: “Salmon pizza for breakfast!”
Best tip: Save room for the gelato!
15) Anthony’s Restaurant & Fish Bar (Seattle-Tacoma Airport, Main Lobby Center) - 46 reviews, 4.6 stars
The Quick Summary:Not only does this place have a great view but also the staff is super friendly and attentive. Their breakfast can’t be beat, even though you don’t think of a seafood place for breakfast (think salmon bagel and other local fare). Salmon and chips is a must with the most reviews, but the Mahi Mahi Taco is a close second. Top it all off with a Bloody Mary.
What the flyers are saying: “Anthony’s wins for best local/regional tap selection I’ve ever seen in an airport.”
Best tip: Go to the bar and they’ll plug your laptop in on their side!
14) Sushi Maki (Miami International Airport, Gate D29) - 27 reviews, 4.7 stars
The Quick Summary:Sushi here is always fresh and prices are comparable to outside locations. Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The fried rice is extremely tasty and big enough for two.
What the flyers are saying: “This place made me a believer that it is possible to have fresh sushi at the airport.”
Best tip: Ask for a cup to pour your soy sauce & wasabi into – the to-go trays are not very good for mixing the sauce.
13) Chef Jimmy’s Bistro (Denver International Airport, Concourse Center) - 45 reviews, 4.6 stars
The Quick Summary:Don’t think you can find chicken marsala and marinated skirt steak with tomato, basil, and balsamic glaze on an airport menu? Think again. With fast prompt service and over 40 options (you can go for a simple panini, or burger) you might just plan your trips around flying out of this terminal.
What the flyers are saying: “I eat here several times monthly. Never had any menu item that wasn’t good.”
Best tip: Only place open that serves alcohol in the entire airport past 9:30PM; a key for those taking the red-eye.
12) Brioche Doree (Atlanta Airport, Centerpoint) - 35 reviews, 4.7 stars
The Quick Summary: As quick as fast food but the quality of a restaurant. Hidden and a little hard to find (tucked in the corner right next to the bookstore), this best kept airport secret away from the noise is a superb place to get food, and a smile from the staff.
What the flyers are saying: “A hidden gem”
Best tip: Have to try the turkey/brie/ apple sandwich
11) Harry & Izzy’s (Indianapolis Airport, Gate A6) - 22 reviews, 4.7 stars
The Quick Summary:Best sit down restaurant in Indianapolis airport. Tremendous praise for all the food here, prime rib sandwich, fillet sliders, and calamari, you can’t go wrong. With prompt and polite service, Harry & Izzy’s provides you with everything you need for an enjoyable dining experience that makes you feel like you’re not in an airport.
What the flyers are saying: “Outstanding prime rib sandwich.”
Best tip: Order the shrimp cocktail, but be careful, when they say it’s spicy they mean it!
10) Nature’s Table (Atlanta Airport, Centerpoint) - 25 reviews, 4.7 stars
The Quick Summary: “Not typical airport junk food. Delicious and health conscious!” From fresh squeezed OJ to generous portions of balsamic chicken, this place is worth a trip from other concourses. Tucked away in the quieter Concourse E, this is a great place to come for healthier options.
What the flyers are saying: “ Best fresh squeezed OJ I have ever tasted”
Best Tip: Crew gets a discount
9) Lenny’s Sub Shop (Memphis Airport, Gate B4) - 23 reviews, 4.8 stars
The Quick Summary: Name says it all; this is where you come for a great sub. Only the freshest best tasting ingredients go into the made to order sandwiches here and at a reasonable price. No wonder there is a usually a long line, but don’t let that discourage you as they know how to keep it moving.
What the flyers are saying: “A really good sub on great bread. The friendly staff keeps the order flowing, so don’t let the line out the door keep you from enjoying a treat”
Best tip: Try to spicy relish!
8) Ivar’s Seafood Bar (Seattle-Tacoma Airport, Main Lobby Center) - 26 reviews, 4.8 stars
The Quick Summary:A great local fast food seafood chain but don’t let that fool you; this place is top quality. A smart friendly staff trained well to handle the long lines that accumulate here. Smoked salmon chowder, fish and chips, crab cakes, everything on the menu here receives high praises.
What the flyers are saying: “Never had anything here that I don’t love! Have to try the smoked salmon chowder”
Best tip: Go for the grilled options to be healthier.
7) Five Guys (Reagan Washington, Gate 37) - 32 reviews, 4.8 stars
The Quick Summary: Everyone has their favorite burger place, and this one steals the hearts of east coasters. The Idaho potatoes can’t be beat (hint: get them Cajun style). Best part, they serve burgers for breakfast!
What the flyers are saying: “You simply cannot find a better burger or fries… Look for high quality beef augmented by fresh vegetables (jalapenos)!”
Best tip: “Be sure to get a few extra napkins, especially if you plan on eating it on the plane.” Sounds like our kind of burger joint!
6) Potbelly Sandwich Works (Chicago Midway Airport, Gate B1 ) - 70 reviews, 4.7 stars
The Quick Summary:Don’t let the long line discourage you, this places moves fast thanks to great service, and is well worth the 5-minute wait. You cannot go wrong with anything here; sandwiches, salads, and soups are all worthy, with a special call out to The Wreck. You know you have a winner when you can spot flight crews dining.
What the flyers are saying: “Quite simply…the best food and value you will find at any airport.”
Best tip: If you call when you land, they will prepare your order ahead of time so you don’t have to wait in line. Now that’s service!
5) One Flew South (Atlanta International Airport, Centerpoint) – 45 reviews, 4.8 stars
The Quick Summary: Can’t decide between sushi and a sandwich? Come here and have both, paired with creative cocktails to wash it all down! The sushi rolls are fantastic; the pork belly entree receives high praise for those less fish inclined. With a fancy atmosphere and great ambiance, you’ll forget you are in an airport.
What the flyers are saying: “Proper respect for cocktails.” “Not many eateries are worth buying a plane ticket to get to, but this is one of them.”
Best tip: Despite Atlanta Airport being paid WiFi, the bonus of One Flew South is that it has its own free WiFi!
4) Ike’s Coffee Bar & Cocktails (Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport, The Mall) - 25 reviews, 4.8 stars
The Quick Summary: Breakfast, lunch, or dinner, the great American menu here is sure to please. A classy joint in a convenient location away from the airport turmoil with décor that will make you forget you are in the airport. The burgers receive the most praise.
What the flyers are saying: “Have to try the vanilla milkshake…just like Grandpa used to make!!”
Best tip: Not the cheapest of joints but you won’t be disappointed.
3) Garrett’s Popcorn (Chicago O’Hare International Airport, Gate B8) - 29 reviews, 4.8 stars
The Quick Summary:You don’t have to stand on long lines in downtown Chicago to get the classis taste of Garrett’s, yes, the “famous one that even Oprah talks about.” However, one traveler said - “I don’t buy it because of Oprah, I buy it because its good.” Local and global favorite: the Chicago mix.
What the flyers are saying: ““Simply the best stuff on earth.”
Best tip: If you are still on the fence, “ask for a sample, they will give you a small cup of the cheese and caramel to help make your decision.”
2) Vino Volo (Washington Dulles Airport, Gate C3) - 23 reviews, 5 stars
The Quick Summary:Great selection of wine at reasonable prices and knowledgeable staff in an airport? Better believe it. This little slice of paradise is a great place to relax, munch on some food, and have a glass of good wine before you flight. Like the wine you were sipping on? Everything is available for take away.
What the flyers are saying: “An oasis of calm and good taste. What a refreshing experience!”
Best tip: Trust the staff when they make a recommendation. And don’t forget to use the GateGuru coupon for free olives!
1) Amy’s Ice Cream (Austin-Bergstrom Airport, Food Court) - 33 reviews, 4.9 stars
The Quick Summary:For a true taste of local homemade ice cream, this is your place. With the “wackiest/funniest workers” around, expect to have things your way. With innovative flavors like Mexican Vanilla, Sweet Cream, and Sweet Leaf Original and lots of mix-ins like Oreo’s crush, Reese’s crush, and strawberries, the possibilities are endless.
What the flyers are saying: “They take a craftsman’s approach to making each customized order”
Best tip: “Get a bottle of Sweet Leaf Original sweet tea to go.”