Saturday, May 4, 2013

The best restaurant in the world...

Osteria Francescana..on the "to visit" list

Regular readers of this blog (are there any?) might recall earlier reports of other-worldly dining experiences at three of the restaurants named in the "World's 50 Best restaurants" List - a list complied by foodie types for 'restaurant' magazine in the UK. Bagging the top spot on this list is an automatic entitlement to be regarded at 'the best restaurant in the world'. Whether you agree with that or note, it is certainly a useful way to identify amazing cuisine of the 'molecular gastronomy' variety. And since the establishments are judged not only on their food, but on the philosophy, service, ambience and experience, it's a pretty sure thing that a visit to one fo these places will be - weel, spectacular.

You can read your blogger's views on the monumental el Bulli, sadly no longer offering its amazing fare; Heston Blumenthal's The Fat Duck, and Noma in Copenhagen in previous posts.

The new list for 2013 was announced a few months back, and I thought I'd share the current standings with you. Spain still occupies two of the top five places, though Italy has slipped in. Osteria Francescana in Modena is now on my "to visit" list --check out its website. Only twelve tables.

And despite an outbreak of novovirus last year, Noma has hung on to top spot (though I must say I smile when I read references to Noma Chef Rene Redzepi's "cooking". Whatever else they do at Noma - and it's pretty amazing - very little of the food is, in my experience, actually cooked. But that's another story.

Here's what Grub Street New York had to say about the current list -- and all those fifty names for you to ponder:

List-makers knocked the Fat Duck down to thirteen after it held places in the top five since 2004, though Heston Blumenthal's London spot, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, debuted at number nine. David Kinch's Manresa breaks into the Top 50 this year, arriving at the 48 spot. Ssäm Bar bumps up from 40 to 37 (still down from the 26 spot it held in 2010). Daniel Boulud's flagship, Daniel, plummeted from 11 last year down to 25 this year. Does this mean any of these restaurants are really any better or worse than they were last year? Not really, since all these chefs and restaurants are absolutely fantastic, and if you go to any one of these places you'll have a very, very good meal, possibly (probably?) one of the best of your life.

1. Noma, Denmark
2. El Cellar de Can Roca, Spain
3. Mugaritz, Spain
4. D.O.M., Brazil
5. Osteria Francescana, Italy
6. Per Se, New York
7. Alinea, Illinois
8. Arzak, Spain
9. Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, U.K.
10. Eleven Madison Park, New York
11. Steirereck, Austria
12. L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon, France
13. The Fat Duck, U.K.
14. The Ledbury, U.K.
15. Le Chateaubriand, France
16. L'Arpege, France
17. Pierre Gagnaire, France
18. L'Astrance, France
19. Le Bernardin, New York
20. Frantzén/Lindeberg, Sweden
21. Oud Sluis, Netherlands
22. Aqua, Germany
23. Vendome, Germany
24. Mirazur, France
25. Daniel, New York
26. Iggy's, Singapore
27. Les Creations de Narisawa, Japan
28. Nihonryori Ryugin, Japan
29. Quay, Australia
30. Schloss Schauenstein, Switzerland
31. Asador Extebarri, Spain
32. Le Calandre, Italy
33. De Librije, Netherlands
34. Fäviken Magasinet, Sweden
35. Astrid y Gaston, Peru
36. Pujol, Mexico
37. Momofuku Ssäm Bar, New York
38. Biko, Mexico
39. Waku Ghin, Singapore
40. Quique Dacosta, Spain
41. Mathias Dahlgren, Sweden
42. Hof Van Cleve, Belgium
43. The French Laundry, California
44. Amber, China
45. Vila Joya, Portugal
46. Il Canto, Italo
47. Bras, France
48. Manresa, California
49. Geranium, Denmark
50. Nahm, Thailand

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