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Dal Pescatore ratings fell from being in the top 10 to 70 in the World's Best restaurant list???

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Oh dear~just read where Dal Pescatore (where we have reservations in June) fell from the top 10 restaurants to 70 whereas Osteria Francescana is rated 5. I don't believe that the chefs have changed at Dal Pescatore. Now I am wondering if I should change my reservations from Dal Pescatore to Osteria Francescana. Have tried to research why such a large drop in ratings. Does anyone have any knowledge of criteria for ratings and are the restaurants listed in top 50 justified?

I have read the reviews from fellow chowhounders and tripadvisor board and hope that they will give their thoughts. I wish we could dine at both restaurants and make a comparison but must choose only one and we realize they have a different type of cuisine.

Thank for your contributions!

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  1. Dal Pescatore was No. 38 in 2011; it's still a drop of 32 places, but it's not a drop from the top 10. Osteria Francescana was No. 4 last year. The year-by-year listings are here:

    http://www.theworlds50best.com/

    As far as I can tell from reading food blogs and online food magazines by people who know far more about it than I do (one of them votes in the World's Best selection), there are changing trends in what is considered "top" in international haute cuisine, and there are also wheels within wheels, lobbies, politics. In other words, a drop in the ratings does not mean a similar drop in quality. Or a rise a similar rise in qualty: The No. 4 restaurant this year was up 11 places last year and is up another 7 places this year.

    Read what you can about the two restaurants and what they have to offer and choose the one whose menu and approach appeal to you more. Neither is likely to disappoint you, if you have a fairly good idea going in of what to expect and not to expect.

    10 Replies
    1. re: Octavian

      There have been recent reports here on both - use the search to find them - totally different styles. Don't let yourself be led by heavily lobbied lists like this one.

      1. re: jen kalb

        @plufmud

        First of all you have to realize the list is just another huge marketing ploy, in this case sponsored by Nestle. I would be willing to bet that most of these restaurants serve or will serve Nestle water (of which there are perhaps a hundred around the world... they've got most of them locked up). Then one has to realize that each of the voters has tried only a fraction of the restaurants. Then one has to ask what does it mean to be the "best. What is the "best." Sure, if people want to just go by the numbers then this list is as good as any. But to make the analogy with Parker wine scores, do you want to drink the Parker score or the wine? Lastly, to show what a farce this whole list is I would note the following: Eleven Madison Park at 10; Daniel at 25; egregiously Il Canto in Siena at 46, Cracco at 55 and the worst of all, Blue Hill at Stone Barns at 77.

        Dal Pescatore, today, is exactly what it was last year and the year before and the year before. It hasn't changed. As Antonio Santini said yesterday in the Mantova newspaper, the chefs are the same (Nadia and Giovanni), the staff is the same (headed by him), the place hasn't changed and the wine cellar is still great.

        IMHO, if you wanted to go to Pescatore before, a list shouldn't prevent you from going now.

        1. re: allende

          Thank you for your replies!!!! Will report about our dinner at Dal Pescatore also having dinner Venissa Ristorante Osteria in Venice.

          We are staying 2 nights at Antico Corte Pallenvinca, 5 nights in Parma, 3 nights in Bellagio and ending the trip with 2 nights in Milan. We think we have pretty much chosen our restaurants in all areas except for the 2 nights in Milan~more research..

          1. re: plufmud

            And where are you eating the two nights at Antico Corte and the five nights in Parma?

            1. re: allende

              One night at their restaurant as well as a cooking class next day,
              Da Ivan, lunch at Guisti, Trattoria ai Due Paltani, Da Amerigo, Marielli and considering Ristorante Cocchi. Will be staying at Palazzo Rosa Prati in Parma. We have a tentative scheduled tour with Parmagolosa and lunch with the tour to visit Parm farm and then Bals.tasting.

              Would love to have any thoughts or other recommendations for our visit. We do read ALL the entries on Chowhound but it also reassuring to have people respond with positve/negative comments or other suggestions about someone's itinerary. When we travel we try to experience as much as possilbe knowing that we may never visit the area again. Of course we also allow for down time and realize that our plans can change when in the area.

              Again, thanks to you all!! Didn't mean for this to get so long.

              1. re: plufmud

                Generally a very good list. Some of my favorite trattorie: Da Ivan; Giusti; Mariella; Amerigo.
                Dal Pescatore. Where are you staying when you go there?

                1. re: allende

                  We are driving from Antica Corte Pallenvinca.

                  1. re: plufmud

                    Leave plenty of time.

                2. re: plufmud

                  what a wonderful list! Im looking forward to hearing more about these places. I think you will need to take some walks in between! - and do give a try to the artisanal liqueurs in this region - we really liked the sburlon (quince) at Spigaroli's less formal restaurant.

                  1. re: plufmud

                    Fantastic list plufmud! We had such an amazing tour at lunch at Pallenvinca, and when we left I told my husband that some day we would stay there! You will love due Platani and we had a great dinner at Cocchi. I still kick myself that I didn't try the bolito misto while we were there!

                    If you find my report, you will see my other recs for Parma - the pizza and aperitivo (if you are looking for something lighter one night).

        2. Plufmud, as you know: ratings are just ratings. Subjective stuff. I ate at Dal Pescatore this past Thursday, and honestly..whatever the folks of San Pellegrino think..I just couldn't care (not meant to be rude, just upfront): it was an amazing meal.

          1. MichelinStar,

            We dined at Dal Pescatore on June 20th and I absolutely agree that it was fabulous!!! We were greeted by Nadia who is so charming. Ater having drinks in the sitting room we were shown the kitchen and were introduced to Nonna. She was preparing saffron risotto which we enjoyed later~delicious. Unbelievable that Nonna is 83 years! The orange souffle was perfection. Everything about the night was magical!!! This was one of the highlights of our trip.