France dominates new list of top 100 restaurants in the world

By AFP - Relaxnews | Published on January 29, 2015
  • Chef Pierre Gagnaire

    Chef Pierre Gagnaire

    © AFP PHOTO/MIKE CLARKE

France dominates new list of top 100 restaurants in the world

In a not-so-subtle jab at the controversial World’s 50 Best Restaurants ranking, another food publication has released its own version of the top 100 restaurants in the world, this time asking for the input of Michelin-starred chefs.

In the last few years, The World’s 50 Best, organized by British publication ‘Restaurant’ magazine, has rankled feathers in the world of high gastronomy.

In addition to murky details on whether or not voter panelists pay for their own meals, the voting system has also been criticized for being both over and under-represented in certain geographical areas.

Enter “Le Chef” magazine, a French publication whose response to the World’s 50 Best Restaurants was to poll 512 two-to-three-Michelin-starred chefs around the world.

The idea was simple: “Which five chefs and restaurants represent the best of the cooking profession? Which chefs and restaurants would they want to see on a list of the top 100 restaurants in the world?"

Dominating the top 10 list is France, with five of the spots taken by French culinary titans such as Pierre Gagnaire, Paul Bocuse and Alain Ducasse. The balance is represented by Spain, Japan, and the US, including Daniel Humm and Thomas Keller.

The results were announced out of SIRHA, in Lyon, France this week, a five-day food fair best known for hosting the prestigious culinary competition the Bocuse d’Or.

A scan of the top 10 chefs and restaurants on ‘Le Chef’s’ list, meanwhile, and the top-ranked dining destinations on The World’s 50 Best list could also be described as a simple division of old versus new guard in gastronomy.

While the latter list recognizes adventurous, trailblazing chefs -- many of whom are of younger generations -- the former leans heavily towards older, more established cooking heavyweights.

Here are the top 10 chefs and restaurants, as deemed by ‘Le Chef’ in no particular order:

  • Restaurant Pierre Gagnaire, Chef Pierre Gagnaire, France
  • Restaurant Paul Bocuse, Paul Bocuse, France
  • El Celler de Can Roca, Joan Roca, Spain
  • Per Se, Thomas Keller, USA
  • Louis XV, Alain Ducasse, Monaco
  • Restaurant Michel Bras, Michel Bras, France
  • Epicure, Eric Frechon, France
  • Ledoyen, Yannick Alleno, France
  • Nihon Ryori Ryugin, Seiji Yamamoto, Japan
  • Eleven Madison Park, Daniel Humm