Spoon HQ

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Restaurant magazine announces the list of The S.Pellegrino World's 50 Best Restaurants 2009

Ferran Adrià holds on to number one spot whilst witnessing a host of young talent racing up the list

For the fourth year in a row Ferran Adrià has topped a worldwide poll of 806 chefs, critics and other industry experts, whilst Heston Blumenthal’s The Fat Duck retains second place. Below these perennial favourites however it’s all change in the eighth annual listing of the S.Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurants.

Copenhagen’s Noma restaurant with its youthful head chef Rene Redzepi ranks third, making an exciting addition to the world’s greatest chefs trinity. Noma, which rises 7 places, also takes this year’s Chef’s Choice Award. Last month after all of the votes had been counted and the top 50 restaurants established, the head chefs of these extraordinary establishments were asked to nominate the restaurant which they considered to be the best in the world. It is the ultimate honour Redzepi’s peers can bestow.

Last year’s Chef’s Choice, Mugaritz, retains it’s highest ever position at number 4, whilst another Spanish restaurant, El Celler de Can Roca, rises a staggering 21 places to the fifth place making it 2009’s highest climber. With the eponymous restaurant Arzak in the 8th position, Spain can claim more restaurants at the very top echelons of the list than any other country.

Thomas Keller’s New York restaurant Per Se strikes the 6th position and with The French Laundry also well placed on the list, this year, Keller is the only restaurateur with two restaurants in the top 50. Perhaps it’s his eagle eye trained on the live video streamed from the kitchen on the east coast to the kitchen in the west that enables such unparalleled excellence to be maintained.

Family business, Bras, headed by chef Michel Bras is the highest placed French restaurant at 7. France’s culinary heritage and mastery continues to draw in a wealth of admirers from across the globe as it ties with the USA to score the highest number of restaurants on the list, each has 8 establishments in the top 50.

A young star, who refused to let a life threatening illness stall his progress, continues to rise through the ranks. Grant Achatz of Alinea who was the highest new entry in 2007 rose 15 places in 2008 and this year rises a further 11 places to join the top 10.

The highest new entry swoops in from Italy settling at position 13. At Osteria Francescana chef Massimo Bottura introduces Italy’s old guard to Spain’s new wave by taking traditional Italian flavours and boldly toying with them. Meanwhile last year’s highest new entry Vendôme with Joachim Wissler at its helm keeps the momentum going by rising a very respectable 9 places to 25th position.

2009 sees more new talent making its mark on the list than in previous years. Such rising stars, all of which are new entries, include Steirereck of Austria (30), New York’s Momofuku Ssam Bar (31), Mirazur in the South of France (35), Iggy’s in Singapore (45) and Quay in Australia (46).

The growing influence of Japanese chefs on the global restaurant scene has also been recognised by the voters in the Nespresso Worlds 50 Best Restaurants Academy. Les Créations de Narisawa in Tokyo is a new entry at 20.

Restaurant Mathias Dahlgren which opened less than two years ago, has won a clutch of awards for its interior design however the “natural cuisine” served by this renowned Swedish chef resonates just as powerfully with critics and fellow chefs the world over. Already it has gathered enough admirers to find itself awarded a position on the S.Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurants list (50th).

The final new entry, charting at 40, are the rock star chefs from Paris, Le Chateaubriand. Undoubtedly, the coolest of chefs in France, Inaki Aizpitarte and his team were accurately tipped for the top last year when they were awarded “Breakthrough Restaurant” of the Year.

The restaurant tipped to breakthrough into the top 50 in 2010 is Marcus Wareing at The Berkeley. The newly “released” Marcus Wareing has impressed the world with his skill as a restaurateur as well as a chef. He so narrowly missed charting in the top 50 that Restaurant magazine are confident that out of all of the new restaurants ranking 51 - 100, his is the one guaranteed to breakthrough on to the list next year.

One of only two new restaurants to chart in 2008, the “primitive cooking” of former fire fighter Victor Arguinzoniz sees Asador Etxebarri in Spain continuing to impress chefs and critics alike. In complete contrast to the high tech gadget loving maestros that dominate the top of the chart, this self-taught chef has elevated cooking over an open flame to new heights.

The Acqua Panna Best Continental Awards are bestowed upon the highest-ranking restaurant in Europe, Asia, The Middle East and Africa, The Americas, and Australasia. This year those awards went to El Bulli (Europe), Les Créations de Narisawa (Asia), Per Se (The Americas), Tetsuya’s (Australasia) and Le Quartier Français (The Middle East and Africa).

Compassionate food lovers across the globe can secure a reservation at many of the restaurants on the list by biding on e-Bay for a meal, with all proceeds going to humanitarian organisation Action Against Hunger, official charity partner of the 2009 awards. Bidding begins 21st April. myworld.ebay.co.uk/actionagainsthungeruk

A restaurant’s ranking on the S.Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurants list is decided purely on the votes of a large panel of well respected international judges collectively called the Nespresso World’s 50 Best Restaurants Academy. The Academy comprises of 806 chefs, restaurateurs, food writers and restaurant critics, a third of whom did not vote in the previous year.

Announced a week prior to the event the Lifetime Achievement award went to Joël Robuchon.

The S.Pellegrino World's 50 Best Restaurants 2009 1-50 List

1 El Bulli Spain (=) www.elbulli.com
2 The Fat Duck UK (=) www.fatduck.co.uk
3 Noma Denmark (▲7) www.noma.dk
4 Mugaritz Spain (=) www.mugaritz.com
5 El Celler de Can Roca Spain (▲21) www.cellercanroca.com
6 Per Se USA (=) www.perseny.com
7 Bras France (=) www. michel-bras.com
8 Arzak Spain (=) www.arzak.es
9 Pierre Gagnaire France (▼6) www.pierre-gagnaire.com
10 Alinea USA (▲11) www.alinea-restaurant.com
11 L’Astrance France (=) www.lastrance.abemadi.com
12 The French Laundry USA (▼7) www.frenchlaundry.com
13 Osteria Francescana Italy (New Entry) www.osteriafrancescana.it
14 St John UK (▲2) www.stjohnrestaurant.co.uk
15 Le Bernardin USA (▲5) www.le-bernardin.com
16 Restaurant de l’HÔtel de Ville Switzerland (▲11) www.philippe-rochat.ch
17 Tetsuya’s Australia (▼8) www. tetsuyas.com
18 L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon France (▼4) www.joel-robuchon.com
19 Jean Georges USA (▼2) www.jean-georges.com
20 Les Créations de Narisawa Japan (New Entry) www.narisawa-yoshihiro.com
21 Chez Dominique Finland (▲18) www.chezdominique.fi
22 Ristorante Cracco Italy (▲21) www.ristorantecracco.it
23 Die Schwarzwaldstube Germany (▲12) www.traube-tonbach.de
24 D.O.M. Brazil (▲16)
25 Vendôme Germany (▲9)
26 Hof van Cleve Belgium (▲2)
27 Masa USA (Re-entry) www.masanyc.com
28 Gambero Rosso Italy (▼16) Tel +39 (0)56570 1021
29 Oud Sluis Netherlands (▲13) www.oudsluis.nl
30 Steirereck Austria (New Entry) www.steirereck.at
31 Momofuku Ssäm Bar USA (New Entry) www.momofuku.com
32 Oaxen Skärgårdskrog Sweden (▲16) www.oaxenkrog.se
33 Martin Berasategui Spain (▼4) www.martinberasategui.com
34 Nobu UK (▼4) www.noburestaurants.com
35 Mirazur France (New Entry) www.mirazur.fr
36 Hakkasan UK (▼17) www.hakkasan.com
37 Le Quartier Français South Africa (▲13) www.lequartier.co.za
38 La Colombe South Africa (Re-entry) www.constantia-uitsig.com
39 Asador Etxebarri Spain (▲5) www.asadoretxebarri.com
40 Le Chateaubriand France (New Entry) tel +33 (0)1 43574595
41 Daniel USA (=) www.danielnyc.com
42 Combal Zero Italy (Re-entry) www.combal.org
43 Le Louis XV France (▼28) www.alain-ducasse.com
44 Tantris Germany (▲3) www.tantris.de
45 Iggy’s Singapore (New Entry) www.iggys.com.sg
46 Quay Australia (New Entry) www.quay.com.au
47 Les Ambassadeurs France (▼2) www.crillon.com
48 Dal Pescatore Italy (▼25) www.dalpescatore.com
49 Le Calandre Italy (▼13) www.calandre.com
50 Mathias Dahlgren Sweden (New Entry) www.mathiasdahlgren.com

The S. Pellegrino World's 50 Best Restaurants 2009 51-100 List

51 Zuma China www.zumarestaurant.com
52 Marcus Wareing at the Berkeley UK www.the-berkeley.co.uk
53 Spondi Gre www.spondi.gr
54 L’Arpege Fra www.alain-passard.com
55 L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon China www.joel-robuchon.com
56 Hibiscus UK www.hibiscusrestaurant.co.uk
57 Aqua Ger www.ritzcarlton.com
58 Le Gavroche UK www.le-gavroche.co.uk
59 Chez Panisse USA www.chezpanisse.com
60 Les Amis Sng www.lesamis.com.sg
61 El Poblet Spn www.elpoblet.com
62 Maison Pic Fra www.pic-valence.com
63 Cafe Pushkin Rus www.cafe-pushkin.ru
64 Le Meurice Fra www.lemeurice.com
65 Bukhara Ind www.itcportal.com/hotels
66 Varvari Rus www.anatolykomm.ru
67 Schauenstein Ger www.schauenstein.ch
68 RyuGin Jap www.nihonryori-ryugin.com
69 La Maison Troisgros Fra www.troisgros.fr
70 Wasabi Ind www.tajhotels.com
71 The River Café UK www.rivercafe.co.uk
72 Enoteca Pinchiorri Ita www.enotecapinchiorri.com
73 Le Cinq Fra www.fourseasons.com/paris
74 Allegro CzR www.fourseasons.com/prague
75 Quintessence Jap www.quintessence.jp
76 Restaurant Dieter Müller Ger www.schlosshotel-lerbach.com
77 Geranium Den www.restaurantgeranium.dk
78 Caprice China www.fourseasons.com/hongkong
79 Jardines SA www.jardineonbree.co.za
80 Amador Ger www.restaurant-amador.de
81 Biko Mex www.biko.com.mx
82 L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon USA www.joel-robuchon.com
83 Fasano Brz www.fasano.com.br
84 Mozaic Bali www.mozaic-bali.com
85 Obauer Austria www.obauer.com/de
86 Alain Ducasse au Plaza Athénée Fra www.alain-ducasse.com
87 L’Ambroisie Fra www.ambroisie-placedesvosges.com
88 Maison Boulud China www.danielnyc.com/maisonboulud
89 De Librije Neth www.librije.com
90 Babbo USA www.babbonyc.com
91 Maze UK www.gordonramsay.com/maze
92 Zuma UK www.zumarestaurant.com
93 Manresa USA www.manresarestaurant.com
94 Pier Australia www.pierrestaurant.com.au
95 De Karmeliet Belg www.dekarmeliet.be
96 Aubergine SA www.aubergine.co.za
97 Bo Innovation China www.boinnovation.com
98 Rust en Vrede SA www.rustenvrede.com
99 Del Posto USA www.delposto.com
100 Reflets par Pierre Gagnaire UAE www.intercontinental.com/dubai

Friday, April 17, 2009

9 New Restaurants make it onto the 2009 S.Pellegrino World's 50 Best Restaurants List

Over the past eight years the S.Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards has established itself as the most credible guide to the best places to eat on earth. As a host of new talent finds itself on to the list, who will have made way for the 9 newcomers?

A restaurant’s ranking is decided purely on the votes of a large panel of well respected international judges collectively called the Nespresso World’s 50 Best Restaurants Academy. The Academy comprises of 806 chefs, restaurateurs, food writers and restaurant critics, a third of whom did not vote in the previous year.

For the first time since the creation of the Nespresso World’s 50 Best Restaurants Academy we see a restaurant from Japan, another from Singapore and another from Austria feature on the list. Meanwhile a solitary chef manages the extraordinary feat of being the only restaurateur to see two of his restaurants in the top 50.

In addition to the Best Restaurant in the world title the chefs and restaurateurs also await news of the prestigious Acqua Panna Best Continental Awards. These awards are bestowed upon the highest-ranking restaurant in Europe, Asia, The Middle East and Africa, North and South America, and Australasia.

Last month after all of the votes had been counted and the top 50 restaurants established, the head chefs of these extraordinary establishments were asked to nominate the restaurant which they considered to be the best in the world. The Chefs’ Choice Award is the ultimate honour a chef’s peers can bestow. This year’s recipient will be picking up this prestigious award for the first time.

Flying in from around the world to hear the announcement live will be Spain’s Ferran Adrià, the highest ranking chef for the past three years. He will join English maverick Heston Blumenthal to discover whether they have held on to their top spots. Michelin’s most highly awarded chef Joel Robuchon will be crossing the channel to pick up the Laurent Perrier Lifetime Achievement Award fresh from opening his latest restaurant. It is the biggest chefs’ night off of the year after all.

Action Against Hunger, one of the leading international organisations in the fight against malnutrition, has been chosen as the adopted charity of The S.Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurants. Compassionate food lovers across the globe can secure a reservation at many of the restaurants on the list by bidding on e-Bay for a meal, with all proceeds going to the charity. Bidding begins 21st April.



Thursday, April 16, 2009

Joel Robuchon Wins St. Pellegrino Lifetime Achievmen 2009t

Prolific multi-award winning restaurateur Joël Robuchon wins the 2009 Lifetime Achievement Award as chosen by Restaurant Magazine.

The award will be presented at The S.Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards ceremony in London on 20 April.

Joël Robuchon has long been one of France¹s legendary culinary masters. He is renowned for his rigour, skill and passion, and for reinventing the notion of fine dining. In addition to building up a culinary empire, he has taught and inspired many of today¹s great chefs.

Robuchon will be presented with his award by chef Claude Bosi in the magnificent surroundings of the Freemasons’ Hall in London’s Covent Garden. In accepting this honour the Hibiscus chef-proprietor Bosi extolled the great chef’s influence:

Having accomplished what most chefs can only dream of in their careers, Joël Robuchon has made a huge impact on our industry. Building his empire using basic fundamentals; discipline, honesty and consistency; he has achieved the formulae of worldwide success. Joël Robuchon is one of the few who I can personally say has been instrumental in developing the food and restaurants we have today."
Claude Bosi, chef-proprietor, Hibiscus

On Monday 20 April Joël Robuchon will be surrounded by his peers, all fellow members of the restaurant nobility, to hear the annual roll call of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants. 

Paul Wootton, editor of Restaurant magazine which organises the S.Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurant Awards, explains why Joël Robuchon was chosen to be recipient of this award:

His embracing of other culinary cultures and dining experiences propelled him to new heights when he re-emerged on to the restaurant scene in 2003, allowing him to create a restaurant empire that spans the globe. He demonstrated how great food can both absorb and transcend cultural and linguistic differences. While he may now be a global culinary superstar (the fact that he holds more Michelin stars than anyone else attests to that), he remains a stickler for detail and as infatuated with the art of cooking as he has ever been. That he can disseminate his culinary vision without diluting it is a rare achievement indeed.”

Paul Wootton, Editor, Restaurant 

In accepting this award Joël Robuchon joins previous winners Gualtiero Marchesi (2008), Alice Waters (2007), Michel Roux Sr. and Albert Roux (2006) and Paul Bocuse (2005), all of whom have made an outstanding contribution to the pursuit of culinary excellence.

Despite having achieved such heights of culinary excellence, Robuchon shows no sign of him taking his foot off the pedal. Robuchon opened his first “pure” Japanese restaurant, Yoshi in Monaco in January this year.

Joël Robuchon will be in the UK for a limited period and will be available for a select number of interviews on Monday 20 April only.

The Lifetime Achievement Award is sponsored by Laurent-Perrier. 

Biography Joel Robuchon

Joel Robuchon was born on April 7, 1945 in Poitiers.  His father was a mason, his mother a housewife.

He entered the seminary at the age of twelve, and was intended for the priesthood.  Three years later, however, family difficulties forced him to find work, and as his best moments at the seminary had been spent in the kitchen, he consequently became an apprentice at the Relais de Poitiers for three years, where he learnt the basics of traditional culinary techniques.

In 1966 Robuchon became the official chef of La Tour de France namely “Compagnon du Tour de France”, enabling him to travel throughout the country, learning a variety of diverse regional techniques.  As a companion he also became inculcated with the spirit of reaching moral, manual and physical perfection.  

Aged 28, Robuchon was named head chef of the new hotel, Harmony-Lafayette, overseeing 3000 meals everyday.  Two years later, he received the highest distinction to which a manual worker can aspire to in France “Meilleur Ouvrier de France”.

In 1981 Robuchon set up his own restaurant, Jamin, in Paris.  Within three years, he received three Michelin stars and was subsequently elected “Cuisinier du Siècle” (“Chef of the Century”) by the Guide Gault Millau. 

In 1996, at the age of 50, Robuchon left the eponymously Parisian restaurant which he had opened two years earlier. Rather than retire, he maintained the direction of his restaurant in Tokyo. He opened L’Atelier Joel Robuchon Tokyo in 2003 followed swiftly by further L’Ateliers in Paris (2003), Las Vegas (2005), New York (2006), London (2006) and Hong Kong (2006). He also established Restaurant Joel Robuchon Monte-Carlo (2004), Restaurant Joel Robuchon Las Vegas (2005), La Table de Joel Robuchon Paris (2004), La Table de Joel Robuchon Tokyo (2004), La Table de Joel Robuchon Nagoya (2007) and a shop La Cave de Joel Robuchon Paris (2007).

With no sign of him taking his foot off the pedal, Robuchon opened his first “pure” Japanese restaurant, Yoshi in Monaco in January this year. 

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Ferran Adria's new book Food for Thought

Just had word from Ferran Adria's PR in Spain that the great chef's new book Food For Thought will be published in English at the end of may / beginnning of June 09.

Further details have been nabbed off the press release...
"Food for Thought", edited by Vicente Todoli, director of the Tate Modern (London) and by Richard Hamilton, American contemporary pop-art legend, explores Adria's participation in Documenta 12 and the debates this has stimulated between the worlds of gastronomy and art. "Food For Thought" compiles the discussions of the artists, chefs, critics, gallerists, and curators who took part in two round tables at elBulli, presenting the voices of 12 potent personalities of the art and gastronomic worlds, opening the boundaries between kitchen and art. This work offers a fascinating look at artistic expression and gastronomic creativity, featuring breath-taking photos of Adria's creations with texts and discussions by internationally acclaimed creators and critics. Ferran Adria has revolutionized the world of gastronomy over the last 20 years. Adria has appeared on the cover of "The New York Times Magazine" as the leader of A New Nouvelle Cuisine. Le Monde named him as the best chef in the world and "Time" magazine included him in the 100 most influential personalities on the planet. Adria's restaurant, elBulli, holds 3 Michelin stars and has been recognized 4 times as the world's best restaurant by "Restaurant Magazine". So original and poetically sensible is his approach to cooking that he is considered to be the greatest 'artist of the kitchen' of his generation. In 2007, Adria was the first chef ever to be invited to participate in Documenta (Kassel, Germany), considered to be the most important international art exhibition.

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Monday, April 13, 2009

S.Pellegrino World's 50 Best Restaurant Awards

Awards to be announced on Monday 20 April, 2009 at The Freemasons’ Hall, London.


Now in its eighth year, this internationally recognised event has established itself as the most credible guide to the best places to eat on earth. Year after year, the global pool of voters expands, this year by almost 20%. It also refreshes with a third of voters never having voted before. To arrive at this year’s results a total of 4,185 votes will have been cast by 837 restaurant experts - all well-travelled restaurant commentators, chefs or restaurateurs. Emanating from a unique polling of world’s best travelled and most polished palates the S.Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards has proved itself time and again to be an insightful barometer of culinary trends.


In addition to the S.Pellegrino World’s 50 Best Restaurants list, other announcements on the night will include the Lifetime Achievement award – which last year went to the legendary Italian chef Gualtiero Marchesi –, the Chef’s Choice, the Breakthrough Award and the Acqua Panna Best Continental Awards all of which carry almost as much cache as the number one spot itself. The Acqua Panna Awards are bestowed upon the highest ranking restaurant in Europe, Asia, The Americas, Australasia and (forming one category) The Middle East and Africa.


How the list is compiled.

For the purposes of compiling the list, the world has been divided into 26 regions each with a regional chair who presides over a panel of judges – together they form The Nespresso World’s 50 Best Academy. More representative of the world restaurant industry than ever before, the USA & Canada now comprise of 3 regions instead of one, whilst South East Asia has been split in two, a northern region and a southern region. In recognition of its mature restaurant industry Japan is a region of its own whilst China and Korean voters sit together to form a new region. Each panel member is allowed 5 votes, of which a maximum of three may be for restaurants within their own region. Any restaurant voted for must have been visited within the last 18 months and no-one is allowed to vote for their own restaurant.


This invite only event, where the 2009 ranking is revealed for the first time, will be attended by international restaurant royalty as well as the chefs and restaurateurs from the top 50 restaurants.




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Bill Granger's new book FEED ME NOW published

‘Bill Granger has a gift for creating recipes with instant appeal’

Telegraph Magazine


Feed Me Now is a bright joyful collection of simple, straightforward and nourishing recipes that answer the day-to-day food dilemma’s of modern families.

Nowadays families come in all shapes and sizes, with or without children, young and old, some related and some not.  All have a requirement in their busy lives to be fed nourishing meals, usually in a hurry.  Feed Me Now covers all aspects of providing satisfying and nutritious food quickly and easily. 


Chapters include ideas for quick healthy breakfasts, fast lunches, nursery teas, cook-ahead ideas, after-work suppers and dinners with friends.  A day in the Feed Me Now family might start with rhubarb and strawberry breakfast crisps, mid-day could fuel up with an open sandwich of mushrooms, hazelnuts and goat’s cheese, the afternoon might bring a treat such as Chocolate and pistachio biscotti while friends for dinner might enjoy slow-cooked lamb leg with anchovies and orange.


Combining fresh flavours and ingredients Bill’s recipes produce divine results every time as well as answering the need for fast, healthy food for families and their friends.



The Author

Bill Granger has always had a passion for cooking.  He is a self-taught cook with a strong philosophy that food should always be a joy, never a chore.  This easy-going approach to food is an essential element to his enduring popularity in Australia and the UK.  He was born in Melbourne but moved to Sydney where he opened his first restaurant, bills, at the age of 22, and bills Surry Hills only three years later; a third Sydney restaurant opened in July 2005.  In March this year he opened his first beachside restaurant, in Tokyo – where Bill’s customers queue for up to 2 hours to sample his trademark dishes.  Previous cookbooks include bills, Sydney food, bills food, bills open kitchen, simply bill, Every Day, and Holiday, all international best sellers.  In all, he has sold over 800,000 books. His television series, bills foods, has appeared on the BBC with audiences of 2 million, as well as appearing in twenty-six other countries world-wide.