01/13/2012 09:33 am ET Updated Mar 14, 2012

Countdown: The 10 Best Sustainable Restaurants In The U.S.

They say it's not easy being green. But, honestly, it's gotten easier lately, especially with so many great restaurants making efforts to operate sustainably. But these days it's more than just serving foods sourced from local, organic farms.

Sustainability in 2012 is about designing an efficient, eco-friendly environment, reducing waste, recycling, composting, using biodegradable products when possible, conserving water and generally paying more attention to one's impact on the environment when eating and drinking -- whether it's serving organic wine or knowing where your meat comes from. Here are 10 restaurants whose small footprints are making a big impact:

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