"Since I began compiling our annual roundup, in 2002, I’ve never seen as many exceptional new restaurants," Sharpe writes. "Austin in particular was on fire."
To qualify, these places had to open between November 1, 2014, and November 30, 2015.
Leading the pack is Launderette, the east side hot spot that was also one of our favorite new restaurants of 2015. Sharpe praises the modern Mediterranean restaurant for Chef Rene Ortiz's "over-the-top flavors" and "pastry wizard" Laura Sawicki's sticky toffee pudding.
Juniper also makes the top 10, touted for the "picture-perfect" food styling, the restaurant's design, and the Northern Italian menu created by chefs Nicholas Yanes and Kyle Barker.
Next up on the list is South Lamar's Vox Table, helmed by Chef Joe Anguiano. The restaurant's "kitchen chemistry" and its stellar dishes like the smoked trout and hanger steak designate it as one of the best in the state.
Last but certainly not least is grain-focused Emmer & Rye, which opened on Rainey Street in November 2015. Sharpe writes, "the heart and mind behind the operation belong to 31-year-old Kevin Fink," whose unique, locally sourced menu does not disappoint.
Five more Austin eateries — Bullfight, Fukumoto, Italic, Mongers Market + Kitchen, and Apis — earn honorable mentions.
The rest of the top 10 consists of three Houston restaurants (Helen, SaltAir Seafood Kitchen, and Cureight); two from Dallas (Rapscallion, Ten); and one from Fort Worth (Horseshoe Hill Cafe).
Looking ahead to this year? Check out our list of the 15 most anticipated restaurant openings for 2016.