Food and Drinks

The new World’s 50 Best Restaurants are revealed – but where is Hong Kong?

The top four restaurants were in Italy, Spain, France and the US – while Hong Kong and China struggled to make an impression

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 20 June, 2018, 7:11am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 20 June, 2018, 11:28am

The latest edition of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants was announced on Tuesday night in Spain – with little change at the highest end of the list as the top four shuffled places.

Coming in at the top of the list, which was announced at the Euskalduna Palace in the city of Bilbao, was Osteria Francescana in Modena, Italy, which was in second place in 2017. It was No. 1 in 2016.

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The surprise drop was last year’s winner, Eleven Madison Park in New York, which came in at No. 4. El Celler de Can Roca in Girona, Spain, rose one place to No. 2, while Mirazur in Menton, France, dropped from third place to fourth.

The results were disappointing for Hong Kong, with no restaurants in the top 50. Amber at the Landmark Mandarin, last year’s No. 27, dropped sharply onto the 51-100 list, coming in at No. 56.

Amber culinary director, Richard Ekkebus, said, “We are working hard to define what Amber will look, feel and taste like in the coming 10 years and to fall back, reassess and move forward with an incredible experience of what has worked and what has not, to relaunch us back into the top 50.

“Hong Kong is one of the world’s most exciting food cities and deserves multiple positions on the list. To be in the top 50 has always been our aim and we succeeded for the past eight years. Being part of the top 100 is still a stellar achievement and something we are extremely proud of.”

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One restaurant from China – chef Paul Pairet’s Ultraviolet in Shanghai – made the top 50, climbing from No. 41 to No. 24. Gaggan in Bangkok, which topped sister list of Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants for four years in a row, came in at No. 5.

In a press conference after the event, Massimo Bottura, chef of the Michelin three-star Osteria Francescana, took the opportunity to push his attempts at alleviating world hunger; during the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, he and a team of other famous chefs took what would have been wasted ingredients into nutritious, delicious meals that fed the city’s homeless.

He also started the non-profit Food for Soul with top chefs such as Daniel Humm of three-star Eleven Madison Park in New York, and Alain Ducasse of Alain Ducasse Plaza Athenee in Paris and Le Louis XV in Monaco, both with three stars. Food for Soul has community kitchens in cities that include Milan, Rio and London, feeding the homeless in dignified settings.

“The next generation of young chefs is looking at us so we need to set a good example,” he said. “We have to lead them, to teach them that we need to reduce waste.”

Other awards announced last night include World’s Best Pastry Chef, Cedric Grolet; SingleThread in Healdsburg, California as the One to Watch; Clare Smyth of Core by Clare Smyth in London as World’s Best Female Chef; and Gaston Acuria of Astrid y Gaston in Lima, Peru, for Lifetime Achievement Award.

The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2018

1 Osteria Francescana, Modena, Italy

2 El Celler de Can Roca, Girona, Spain

3 Mirazur, Menton, France

4 Eleven Madison Park, New York, USA

5 Gaggan, Bangkok, Thailand

6 Central, Lima, Peru

7 Maido, Lima, Peru

8 Arpège, Paris, France

9 Mugaritz, San Sebastian, Spain

10 Asador Etxebarri, Axpe, Spain

11 Quintonil, Mexico City, Mexico

12 Blue Hill at Stone Barns, Pocantico Hills, USA

13 Pujol, Mexico City, Mexico

14 Steirereck, Vienna, Austria

15 White Rabbit, Moscow, Russia

16 Piazza Duomo, Alba, Italy

17 Den, Tokyo, Japan

18 Disfrutar, Barcelona, Spain

19 Geranium, Copenhagen, Denmark

20 Attica, Melbourne, Australia

21 Alain Ducasse au Plaza Athénée, Paris, France

22 Narisawa, Tokyo, Japan

23 Le Calandre, Rubano, Italy

24 Ultraviolet by Paul Pairet, Shanghai, China

25 Cosme, New York, USA

26 Le Bernardin, New York, USA

27 Boragó, Santiago, Chile

28 Odette, Singapore, Singapore

29 Alléno Paris au Pavillon Ledoyen, Paris, France

30 D.O.M., São Paulo, Brazil

31 Arzak, San Sebastian, Spain

32 Tickets, Barcelona, Spain

33 The Clove Club, London, England

34 Alinea, Chicago, USA

35 Maaemo, Oslo, Norway

36 Reale, Castel Di Sangro, Italy

37 Restaurant Tim Raue, Berlin, Germany

38 Lyle's, London, UK

39 Astrid y Gastón, Lima, Peru

40 Septime, Paris, France

41 Nihonryori RyuGin, Tokyo, Japan

42 The Ledbury, London, UK

43 Azurmendi, Larrabetzu, Spain

44 Mikla, Istanbul, Turkey

45 Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, London, UK

46 Saison, San Francisco, USA

47 Schloss Schauenstein, Fürstenau, Switzerland

48 Hiša Franko, Kobarid, Slovenia

49 Nahm, Bangkok, Thailand

50 The Test Kitchen, Cape Town, South Africa

World’s best restaurants 51-100 list announced, Hong Kong fine dining stars all drop places