Every year the editorial team of Nation’s Restaurant News takes a moment to look at the high end of the restaurant industry and honor those who have contributed consistently to the notion of dining as an art form.

This year we’re inducting four restaurants into our Fine Dining Hall of Fame: Hot and Hot Fish Club in Birmingham, Ala.; Incanto in San Francisco; Jasper’s in Kansas City, Mo; and Momofuku Ko in New York City. We also are naming Boston chef and restaurateur Lydia Shire as our Fine Dining Legend.

Fine Dining in the United States has changed radically over the years, from obligatory white tablecloths and mostly stern waiters serving mostly French food, to venues for entertainment and culinary discovery.

At Incanto, chef Chris Cosentino spearheaded the celebration of organ meats and continues to push boundaries both in exploration of offal and in delving deeply into the many facets of Italian cooking.

Jasper’s is more of a traditional venue that has succeeded for decades with the tried-and-true recipe of classic dishes and great service.

Momofuku Ko helped introduce a new sort of fine dining — the intimate kitchen counter, in which a few guests sit around an open kitchen and marvel at the chefs’ daily creations.

At Hot and Hot Fish Club, Chris Hastings was a pioneer at elevating Southern cuisine and continues to create great memories for his guests every day.

Read more about this year's inductees into Nation's Restaurant News' Fine Dining Hall of Fame:

    •    Hot and Hot Fish Club
    •    Incanto
    •    Jasper’s
    •    Momofuku Ko
    •    Fine Dining Legend: Lydia Shire