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The Year in Eater: Biggest Dining Surprises of 2007

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To close out 2007, Eater once again invited many of our favorite food correspondents to join us in assessing the year's best eats, biggest surprises, and favorite neighborhoods for dining out. First we celebrated Meals of the Year, then Restaurant Standbys; now, Biggest Dining Surprises of 2007.

Balthazar, Dave Chang's biggest surprsie in 2007. Shot by Kalina for the Eater 38.

William Tigertt, Freemans Restaurant: The DOH Death March. Who thought a few KFC lovin' rats would have restaurants all over town scrambling for their lives?

Anon, Sr. Editor, Food & Wine: Multi-way tie: Take down of Tailor, The mess at Gramercy Park Hotel That Waverly Inn is as good as it is, That Ninja is still open.

Jennifer Leuzzi, Snack: TV Chefs (Harold Dieterle and Anne Burrell) open cozy neighborhood spots where they're actually cooking! And the food is good!

Joshua David Stein, Gawker: That Abbe Diaz hasn't killed anyone and isn't homeless yet.

Dave Chang, Man of the Year: I had a great lunch at was perfect, we did breakfast into lunch, eggs into a beautiful plateau of oysters, conch, periwinkles, etc., brandade, steak frites. Everything was spot on, the meal totally surprised us.

Mimi Sheraton: Prices.

Joanne Wilson, aka Gotham Gal: Lunch at Pamploma

Adam Kuban, Serious Eats: A barbecue joint in an auto-parts yard in the Bronx. Totally something I would expect from the KC area, where I grew up, but also so very NYC.

Danyelle Freeman, NY Daily News Food Critic, aka The RG: The most surprising success story has to be Michael Stilman's literal interpretation of the four seasons. It was a bit of a gamble and I'd probably forgo the white glare of winter for spring, but Park Avenue Summer and Autumn were splendid.

Zach Brooks, Midtown Lunch: The biggest surprise about Midtown lunch'ing is the fact that people are still willing to pay over $10 for crappy sandwiches and salads from generic delis. We live in New York people. Walk your lazy ass an extra block and a half during lunch, and you are bound to find something better.

LS: Wandered into a random restaurant in Chinatown and had a really shitty meal. I kind of thought that was like never supposed to happen ever?

BL: That Tom Colicchio seems to be throwing in the towel at Craftbar.

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