flickr: djjewelz

Eleven Madison Park, in New York City, rates high by universal standards.

A New Way to Pick the Best Restaurants in the Country

Renzell is using data to identify the top dining destinations.

Renzell is out to disrupt the restaurant industry’s rating system, a process it believes is too “subjective” and flawed overall. Renzell’s ratings are data driven and based on a proprietary algorithm coupled with comprehensive reviews from its members. The result: a list “unimpeachable and more accurate” than those other guys.

Renzell released an early preview of its 2018 ratings, which encompasses more than 600 restaurants in 11 cities. The ratings assess dining out through eight categories: cocktails, design, hospitality, food, service, value, vibe, and wine/sake/beer.

“Previews such as this are exciting because it gives our restaurants a chance to see how they’re doing and our members a valuable resource for dictating where they should dine out,” says Bo Peabody, founder of Renzell, in a statement. “We analyze data over an entire year and giving insight into how restaurants are faring over time is more meaningful and transparent than doling out an annual rating without context.”

Here are the top restaurants in each city’s ratings preview:

Atlanta: The Lawrence

Boston: Tasting Counter

Chicago: Grace

Dallas: FT33

Los Angeles: Maude

Denver: Fruition

New York: Momofuku Ko (However, Eleven Madison park took over the top spot in the official rankings, the only city so far released).

Philadelphia: Kensington Quarters

San Francisco: Quince

Seattle: Art of the Table

Washington, D.C.: minibar

“Renzell exists to fulfill a simple promise: to provide accurate, unimpeachable ratings. We want to provide a clear picture of what our own experience will be like if we visit that restaurant. No ratings or review system accomplishes that task,” Peabody says in a statement. “Renzell’s methodology eliminates the bias that plagues every other rating system out there today.

More than 12,000 members nationwide, “all of whom are regular patrons and connoisseurs at high-end restaurants,” according to Renzell, rate the restaurants.

Another note separating Renzell is its group of 600 restaurants in the Renzell Restaurants list. To get there, each venue is scrutinized and vetted in advanced of being surveyed by Renzell members. Restaurants are graded on 32 specific criteria before being considered.

The collected data, totaling millions of analytical data points, is leveled against member preferences to ensure accurate ratings. Renzell’s data collection process is independently validated. In an effort to be transparent with the restaurants and consumers, Renzell makes its survey, methodology and data available to the restaurants it covers.

“Renzell's mission is to bring modern data methods to the restaurant ratings ecosystem, which will help restaurants and their guests, and will better allow us to celebrate and enjoy these amazing institutions,” Peabody adds. 

Check out the full ratings here.