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May 1, 2012 02:23 PM

Top 50 restaurants in the world list released yesterday

I just booked a table at Noma in June :-) Go René! I am bummed that some of my favorites fell off the list, like my Basque favorite Asador Etxebarri... but Joan Marie Arzak is still keeping it real at #8, well deserved, however speaking of NE Spain, where is Carme Ruscalleda's magical Sant Pau on this list, yo? And is anyone surprised to see Momofuku Ssäm Bar on here? I mean, it's pretty good, but top 50? Just had drinks at Booker & Dax last night however and loved the cocktails...

1) Noma (Copenhagen, Denmark


2) El Celler de Can Roca (Girona, Spain)

3) Mugaritz (Errenteria, Spain)

4) D.O.M. (São Paulo, Brazil)

5) Osteria Francescana (Modena, Italy)

6) Per Se (New York)

7) Alinea (Chicago, Illinois)

8) Arzak (San Sebastián, Spain)

9) Dinner by Heston Blumenthal (London, England)

10) Eleven Madison Park (New York)

11) Steirereck (Vienna, Austria)

12) L'Atelier Saint-Germain de Joël Robuchon (Paris, France)

13) The Fat Duck (Bray, England)

14) The Ledbury (London, England)

15) Le Chateaubriand (Paris, France)

16) L'Arpege (Paris, France)

17) Pierre Gagnaire (Paris, France)

18) L'Astrance (Paris, France)

19) Le Bernardin (New York)

20) Frantzén/Lindeberg (Stockholm, Sweden)

21) Oud Sluis (Sluis, Netherlands)

22) Aqua (Wolfsburg, Germany)

23) Vendôme (Bergisch Gladbach, Germany)

24) Mirazur (Menton, France)

25) Daniel (New York)

26) Iggy's (Singapore)

27) Narisawa (Tokyo, Japan)

28) Nihonryori RyuGin (Tokyo, Japan)

29) Quay Restaurant (Sydney, Australia)

30) Schloss Schauenstein (Fürstenau, Switzerland)

31) Asador Etxebarri (Atxondo-Bizkaia, Spain)

32) Le Calandre (Rubano, Italy)

33) De Librije (Zwolle, Netherlands)

34) Fäviken Magasinet (Järpen, Sweden)

35) Astrid y Gastón (Lima, Perú)

36) Pujol (Mexico City, Mexico)

37) Momofuku Ssäm Bar (New York)

38) Biko (Mexico City, Mexico)

39) Waku Ghin (Singapore)

40) Quique Dacosta (Denia, Spain)

41) Mathias Dahlgren (Stockholm, Sweden)

42) Hof van Cleve (Kruishoutem, Belgium)

43) The French Laundry (Yountville, California)

44) Amber (Hong Kong, China)

45) Vila Joya (Albufeira, Portugal)

46) Il Canto (Siena, Italy)

47) Bras (Laguiole, France)

48) Manresa (Los Gatos, California)

49) Geranium (Copenhagen, Denmark)

50) Nahm (Bangkok, Thailand)

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  1. Been to Nahm a couple of times (50), although the food was very good.... I would not say it had the best Thai food in Thailand. Wonder what the criteria was - since I doubt the same group of people did not go to all the restaurants :p

    1. Wow, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal's the highest-rated entry from the UK? Well done!

      Not too sure about Iggy's (Singapore) being the highest-ranking restaurant in Asia though. It's rubbish.

      3 Replies
      1. re: klyeoh

        I imagine your comments on Iggy's from last year are still correct?

        1. re: huiray

          Pretty much the same - as you can see from Iggy's web-site, it doesn't need expensive expat chefs, but 2 local SHATEC graduates (Akmal Anuar and Ansari Abdullah) to man their kitchens - and they can still trump other Singapore-based celebrity-driven restaurants like Daniel Boulud's DB Bistro Moderne, CUT by Wolfgang Puck, Guy Savoy, Joel Robuchon, etc., with their highly-experienced French chefs. What Iggy's have is industry connections within Singapore.

          1. re: klyeoh

  's that bad? Now I'm really second guessing my upcoming meal there. Granted its just for lunch but for $85 prix fixe maybe i should reconsider.

      2. It is compiled by Restaurant Magazine (Industry magazine).

        "Voters are comprised of 837 members, each selected for their expert opinion of the international restaurant scene. To create the Academy, and give it a fair representation of the global restaurant scene, we divide the world up into 27 geographical regions. Each region has a chairperson appointed for their knowledge of their part of the restaurant world. These chairs each selected a voting panel of 30 – ensuring a balanced selection of chefs, restaurateurs, food/restaurant journalists and gourmands.". Each voter has seven votes to cast.

        Which to me guarantees it is going to create a list of restaurants that are funded well enough to "create buzz", and pretty well shut out every hole in the wall dinner. And pretty well all going to be a high cost restaurant. It will exclude any restaurant that focuses solely on food quality and not on "ambiance". In other words - it is really NOT the top 50 restaurants. It is the top 50 restaurants of a certain ilk.

        1 Reply
        1. re: cacruden

          Agreed. It also pays to be "well-connected" in your city/country's F&B industry, to guarantee that the usual industry big boys will vote for you.

          1. I posted this before and it got deleted for some reason, but...

            for a place that has as many 2 and 3 star Michelin rated restaurants as it does, Japan does not have one restaurant in the top 50.

            5 Replies
            1. re: DougRisk

              I can only guess that the Japanese contingent split the vote more widely. Another weakness of the voting is that if they have 7 votes each and they do not follow each other to the same restaurants then their vote will get split wider and will end up off the list. My guess is there is more of a "buzz" around a smaller set of restaurants that are frequented by more voters in other countries.

              1. re: DougRisk

                You can also get regional collusion...... you cannot vote for your own restaurant or have an interest in one, but you could vote for another than is a buddy of yours and he could return the favour so you have a more concentrated number of votes for a small set of restaurants within a region. So many ways to rig an system like this.

                1. re: cacruden

                  Agreed. There is a tendency for the judges to go to the restaurants that were ranked highly the year before, which means they are more likely to rank them that year. This amount of inherent bias should discredit the list to nothing more than a fun novelty.

                2. re: DougRisk

                  Am I reading something wrong here? I am seeing two (maybe I misunderstand what you are saying?)

                  27) Narisawa (Tokyo, Japan)

                  28) Nihonryori RyuGin (Tokyo, Japan)

                  1. re: LulusMom

                    You are correct, there are two. But the point still stands that Japan's concentration of Michelin 2/3 far outweighs its presence in this years Pellegrino Top 50.