The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2013 were announced at a lavish award ceremony last night at London’s Guildhall – which was organised by Restaurant magazine and sponsored by San Pellegrino and Acqua Panna. The list has been compiled from votes cast in The World’s 50 Best Restaurants Academy, an influential group of over 900 international leaders in the restaurant industry.
Here is a list of the top 10 winning restaurants:
1. El Celler de Can Roca (Girona, Spain)
Owned by the Roca brothers, El Celler de Can Roca is a family restaurant through and through. The Spanish favourite entered the World’s 50 Best list eight years ago, and has climbed the rankings since. Its relatively low-key rise is reflective of the Rocas’ evolutionary approach and modest outlook.
2. Noma (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Noma is known for its experimental dishes featuring unusual ingredients – last year saw chef patron, Rene? Redzepi, host a 10-day pop-up in a London hotel in which live ants were on the menu. Although sometimes shocking, the food on offer at Noma is of high quality, locally sourced and reflective of the Danish culture – explaining why the restaurant previously held the top spot in the list for three consecutive years.
3. Osteria Francescana (Modena, Italy)
Osteria Francescana is a restaurant where tradition and modernity collide in spectacular fashion. In the late 2000s, the Modena-based eatery enjoyed one of the quickest ascensions in the history of the list – and has now occupied a top 10 slot for fours years running. Chef patron Massimo Bottura’s artistic, show-stopping food has secured him a fervent following.
4. Mugaritz (San Sebastián, Spain)
This remote 50-cover establishment is located in the heart of Gipuzkoa in Spain’s Basque country. Led by chef Andoni Luis Aduriz, the restaurant aims to provoke emotions in its diners – challenging their preconceptions of texture and flavour, and take them out of their comfort zone with the use of unusual ingredients and preparations.
5. Eleven Madison Park (New York, USA)
Chef Daniel Humm and general manager Will Guidara’s sleek art deco-style restaurant serves food loosely based around centuries-old American culinary traditions. Towards the end of the meal, a server performs a card trick at the table – emphasising the restaurant’s sense of theatre. After the meal, diners are whisked off to the kitchen for a bracingly powerful cocktail made in full view of chef Humm and his team.
6. D.O.M. (São Paulo, Brazil)
D.O.M. – domus optimus maximus, or home is greatest and best – was founded in 1994 by part chef, part historian and part botanist, Alex Atala. The restaurant was set up to champion the traditional ingredients and dishes of Brazil, and boasts an even more sophisticated feel since its recent major refurbishment.
7. Dinner by Heston Blumenthal (London, UK)
Located in the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park in Knightsbridge, the 130-cover restaurant was conceived by renowned chef, Heston Blumenthal, and his increasingly influential right-hand-men Ashley Palmer-Watts and James ‘Jockey’ Petrie. Dinner’s menu is inspired by historical British recipes from as far back as the 14th century, which are reworked using contemporary cooking techniques.
8. Arzak (San Sebastián, Spain)
Despite its heavyweight gastronomic status, Arzak retains the vibe of a local, family-run restaurant. Led by Juan Mari Arzak, the restaurant utilises a research-based approach to its food offering – bringing out the best of local ingredients and food culture by reworking ideas and using modern techniques. Inspired by advances in science and technology, certain dishes are served on computer screens.
9. Steirereck (Vienna, Austria)
Having broken into the top 10 for the first time this year, Steirereck is located in a stylish art deco building in the Austrian capital’s verdant central Stadtpark, with views across the River Wien. Chef-owner Heinz Reitbauer’s cooking takes inspiration from his family’s Styrian roots, unearthing rare ingredients from the land and via the restaurant’s unrivalled collection of historical cookbooks.
10. Vendôme (Bergisch Gladbach, Germany)
Part of the Grandhotel Schloss Bensberg, Joachim Wissler’s restaurant takes its name from the town of Vendôme in central France – despite the fact that it does not serve French food. On the contrary, the menu is a proponent of neue Deutsche ku?che, a doctrine that sees Germanic ingredients and traditions come to the fore, often in a highly technical, avant-garde way. This year sees the restaurant entering the list’s top 10 for the first time – and is the first German establishment to do so.
A full list of winners can be found on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2013’s dedicated website.