By Rachel Jones | Photographs by Michael Fornataro 

More than 600 foodies packed the Circuit Center and Ballroom for WHIRL Magazine’s fifth annual Chef’s Best Dish, where they were faced with one of the most difficult challenges of their lives — sampling delicious bites from 20 local restaurants and voting for their favorites. While every single bite was simply divine, the crowd did come to a decision in our closest competition ever. We’d like to thank everyone who attended and congratulate this year’s six winners! 

Best Overall — a tie! 

Jimmy Wan’s 

Tuna Poke Bowl with rice, seaweed salad, guacamole, black sesame seeds, ginger, and scallions

Head Sushi Chef and Partner Alex Tang & Owner Jimmy Wan 


Jerked Pork and Plantain Nachos — a heaping pile of fried plantain chips topped with Chihuahua cheese sauce, jerked pork, scallions, cilantro, pickled red onion, Fresno Chiles, and lime 

Executive Chef Ben Sloan 

Best Seasonal Dish

Burgh Bites’ Brick N’ Mortar 

Harvest Corn Chowder with charred corn, roasted pumpkin, crispy prosciutto, sage, and scallion with grilled jalapeño cornbread on the side 

Owner Ricci Minella 

Best “Pittsburgh” Dish

Bigham Tavern

Black & Gold Pierogi Bowl — pierogi topped with mesquite pork, sunny-side-up eggs, and house-made black and gold sauce, which is a peppery Carolina barbecue sauce 

Executive Chef Les Murphy 

Best Presentation

Eighty Acres Kitchen & Bar

Serenity Hill Farms rack of lamb with roasted Brussels sprouts, butternut squash, and apples, and a warm couscous salad with pomegranate yogurt sauce 

Owner and Executive Chef Don Winkie

Best Dessert

Gaby et Jules 

Macarons in a variety of flavors 

Executive Pastry Chef David Piquard

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