April 23, 2008

Restaurant Magazine's Top List 2008

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The list of "World's 50 Best Restaurants" have just been published yet again by UK's Restaurant Magazine. The updated list for 2008 remains unchanged at the top, and since I haven't made any visits to Europe and the US since 2006, I have only been to 4 out of the top 10.  I would certainly agree that El Bulli, French Laundry and per se all merit a place within the top 10. Not so sure about Arzak.  I have been to 18 of the top 100 restaurants listed.

Honestly, some of the restaurant rankings make me choke, and I question whether some of the people on the panel really know what they are talking about, particularly when it comes to Asian/Japanese food.

As Chubby Hubby has already mentioned in his blog, restaurants from Japan are glaringly missing - there are NONE among the top 100. The top restaurant in Asia continues to be Bukhara in New Delhi - at #55. While I have been to Bukhara and really enjoyed my dining experience there, I feel that there are many, many better restaurants across Asia. Can this be a result of the heavy British influence, where many of the Brits have visited India while travel less to Japan?

Other British/western influence end up with some glaringly ludicrous rankings. Hakkasan at #19? Puh-leeeze! Chinese food for Brits in a hip setting, only a step up from serving chop suey and General Tso's chicken... Nobu London, Nobu New York, Zuma London and Zuma Hong Kong?! These guys clearly have never had a good meal in Japan! Why does Zuma Hong Kong even deserve its #99 spot?!

I am happy, however, with the fact that Singapore's Iggy's has shown up at #77. I have always liked Iggy's and felt it was the best western restuarant in Singapore by a long shot. Pierre Gagnaire in Hong Kong has also made it at #88.

Let us hope that the list improves every year, in terms of having more people on the panel who actually know Asian cuisine...


Anonymous said...

Hakkasan be the world top 100 is a joke!

La Tour D'Argent isn't as good as used to.... there are many better restaurants in Paris.

Peech said...

I agree that La Tour d'Argent is no longer all that it used to be. But it does have the best wine list in Paris, and I have a soft spot for the classic dishes.


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