Doused in butter, its crab claws are everything you'd want in a bite of crustacean, and Tracy's earns bonus points for a crab bisque that's worth the trip alone.

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If we were judging biscuits alone, Silver Skillet might get the nod (we're suckers for grandmothers' recipes), but the total package is at Home Grown, whose massive buttermilk-brined chicken breasts sprawl onto a bed of biscuit, then get drowned in sausage gravy that tastes just as good as it looks.

With respect to laulau, poke, loco moco, Spam musubi, and plate lunches everywhere, the most delicious of all the famously iconic Hawaiian foods has to be its take on the Portuguese donut known as the malasada.

From him: “Steve only serves 'new' shell because the meat is sweeter and more tender, and he has his own lobstermen he uses to supply him so he knows exactly what he’s getting.

He keeps them in seawater, instead of cold water -- because he sells so many so quickly he doesn’t have to worry about them eating each other -- then boils them in salt water, shucks them fresh, and cools them on ice. We'll happily line up for a Baltimore pit beef on a Kaiser roll any day of the week, but when in a port state, nothing tastes sweeter than the local catch.

Other than Outkast, Georgia's greatest export to the rest of the country is undoubtedly the chicken biscuit.

Combining two great sources of Southern pride into one flaky, battery protein hand grenade isn't rocket science, but it does explode taste buds unlike any other Southern staple.

And we’d venture El Norteño makes them better than anyone else in Arizona. And while we do have a place in our hearts for the California burritos stuffed with fries and fish tacos of So Cal, we must go with our one true love: the Mission burrito.

It’s an old-school, counter-service spot where an asada chimichanga brings an unexpected heat, and only gets better when topped with red chile, sour cream, and cheese. We’ve long been fans of the spa town’s iconic restaurant and its fantastic spicy sauce. Yes, yes, it won all sorts of awards when Nate Silver used science and then people to cook up a huge burrito bracket, but we’ve been spouting off about the carnitas at La Taqueria for as long as Thrillist has been in SF, and its hard to argue with the perfection that is its super burrito, especially if you’re going to finish it off with those green/red salsas that are sitting on the table.

But if you want to start a real argument, especially in the Chicago area, start talking about Italian beef, sort of like an Italian riff on a French dip to the uninitiated, and much, much more than that to those who get it. Should you get it dipped (the whole damn sandwich dunked in the rich, spice-laden pan gravy), wet (an extra ladle full poured over the ribbons of beefy goodness held together by a soft roll), or dry (what's wrong with you? It's a lot to figure out, so don't sweat where to get one. Trek out to the small town of Winchester (about 90 minutes west of Indianapolis), order a slice, and enjoy forkful after forkful as three of the most perfect English words dance through your head. You'll find a hubcap-sized serving of tenderloin, pounded thin, battered, and impossibly juicy. And they also make a perfect brisket, which is just fine on its own. Even more than boudin sausage and po-boys, gumbo represents Louisiana’s entire attitude toward food: it’s a rich, deeply flavored stew that utilizes whatever’s bountiful in the season, shows off the state’s unique heritage, and is meant to draw in the family and neighbors for a shared meal.

You'll also find a tiny burger-sized bun and smattering of fixin's that are completely dwarfed by the pork's presence. But the Z-Man somehow makes it even better, stacking onion rings, smoked provolone, and the signature meat on a kaiser roll. Dooky Chase's serves our favorite Creole gumbo, laden with andouille, veal, shrimp, and oysters, and thickened with a dash of filé.

And while the state does amazing things with other foodstuffs, the humble fry is forever associated with Idaho. Deep dish and dogs are generally the first foodstuffs sought by tourists. Hog farming is serious business in Iowa, and so are breaded pork tenderloin sandwiches, one of the meaty fruits (sure, why not) of said farming. But when it comes to the Hot Brown -- Kentucky's legendary open-face turkey, bacon, and Mornay sauce masterpiece -- the original at the Brown Hotel remains the best.