Jonathan Kauffman admits that he pores over newly released lists like the Michelin Guide and Bauer's Top 100 "the way some people search for meaning in baseball stats" and concedes, "That these lists are limited, subjective, and controversial is their selling point." But he points to one obvious limitation of the Chron's annually changing canon: It ain't all that culturally diverse, and is, in large part, about Cal-French-Italian food. Now, what constitutes a Top 100 restaurant isn't just food, but atmosphere and service too, so the vast majority of small, ethnic eateries are out of the running right away. Bauer broke with precedent in including Mission Chinese Food, despite it being in the dumpy environs of Lung Shan; but as a rule the only variety of Indian restaurant that will make the cut, for example, are the Dosa and Amber India variety.
"But do 80+ French- and Italian-based restaurants really represent the pinnacle of dining in the Bay Area?" counters Kauffman, noting only eleven Asian restaurants and two measly Mexican/South American restaurants. Point taken.
The Joy of Arguing with Top 100 Lists [SF Weekly]
The Top 100 Bay Area Restaurants [Chron - finally!]
Earlier: Spruce, Bix, Dining Room at the Ritz All Dropped from the Chron Top 100 [Grub Street]
The Five Restaurants That Should Be in the 2011 Top 100, But Aren’t [Grub Street]