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World's 50 Best Restaurants 2006


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Edited to completely revise content, pointing instead to the quantity of panelists and names of panelists, especially in Asia and Middle East and the geographic distribution of restaurants that receive awards. There's nothing in Japan or China. There is not a full explanation of the process of selection or audience for the list.

Edited by Pontormo (log)

"Viciousness in the kitchen.

The potatoes hiss." --Sylvia Plath

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This list is organized by a UK based "industry oriented" magazine called "Restaurant".

Restaurant Magazine Website

There was a very long thread last year with similar concerns to pontormo's, but, I will be darned if I can find it.

---

Erik Ellestad

If the ocean was whiskey and I was a duck...

Bernal Heights, SF, CA

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Six hundred “professionals” surveyed by the Brit pub Restaurant in partnership with Le Figaro, rated the best restaurants in the world and after El Bulli + the Fat Duck came Pierre Gagniare #3, Michel Bras #6, Louis XV #7, Alain Ducasse #15, Le Cinq #17, l’Astrance #22, Troisgros #24, l’Atelier de Joel Robuchon #25, l’Ambrosie #40, Bocuse #43 and l’Arpege #44. By the bye, for those following the NYT contention that Spain is where it’s at, it garnered 6 top ones versus 11 from France.

John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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A list that includes St. John among the fifty best restaurants in the world has little credit to me, John, or at least tells me a lot about the demographics of those 600 hundreds professionals.

The shocking aspect, if we look at it with some time perspective, is that the first French restaurant comes in the third place and that only three French restaurants are in the top ten.

PedroEspinosa (aka pedro)

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I note with amusement that the Chairperson of the "France" panel is credited on the "World's 50 Best Restaurants" website with being the author of many publications including:

'Comment devenir critique gastronomique sans rien y connaitre' (How to become a restaurant critic without knowing anything)

I wonder if that says everything you need to know about the people compiling this list. :wink:

More seriously though, I find this list to be a bit of light amusement - useful for stimulating debate and conversation but no more definitive as a list of the top restaurants in the world than my personal top 50 (and certainly less relevant to me!).

We all judge restaurants by different criteria - for most of us food and service are the most important but others find "atmosphere" and furnishing to be important to their enjoyment of the experience whereas for me these are minor issues that I tend to pay less attention to. For some price or at least value for money is key, whereas for others if the food and wine are of the right quality almost any price is justified. Personally I would have a problem choosing a restaurant I have almost no chance of getting a reservation at as the "World's Best" - for others that wouldn't matter - indeed the exclusivity might make it even more appealing.

That's why I'm a member of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters - it's home to such a diverse range of opinions and tastes that you can always find members who look for the same things in a restaurant you do and whose recommendations you can follow. Others whose tastes you don't share you can ignore.

Vive la difference.

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A list that includes St. John among the fifty best restaurants in the world has little credit to me, John, or at least tells me a lot about the demographics of those 600 hundreds professionals.

The shocking aspect, if we look at it with some time perspective, is that the first French restaurant comes in the third place and that only three French restaurants are in the top ten.

Pedro: Could you translate your response? Please? !?I think it is wonderful that Mugaritz is 10th on the list of the worlds' best restaurants. This is music to my ears. Judith Gebhart
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I note with amusement that the Chairperson of the "France" panel is credited on the "World's 50 Best Restaurants" website with being the author of many publications including.

I know everyone is kidding around here but Francois Simon is really a pretty informed guy, enough to write the aforementioned book poking fun at himself and other critics. Lately, he’s taken a somewhat contrarian turn and his French is usually beyond me, but he’s never dull, stupid or inaccurate.

On another matter, I’m surprised that no one has questioned the high score for Gagnaire and presence of Bocuse.

John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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On another matter, I’m surprised that no one has questioned the high score for Gagnaire and presence of Bocuse.

Is anyone taking this list seriously?...

Edited by winemike (log)

"Je préfère le vin d'ici à l'au-delà"

Francis Blanche

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François Simon is arguably France's most talented critic. Did you read the book Stephen? I know you know they're easy to judge by their cover...

Edited by fresh_a (log)

Anti-alcoholics are unfortunates in the grip of water, that terrible poison, so corrosive that out of all substances it has been chosen for washing and scouring, and a drop of water added to a clear liquid like Absinthe, muddles it." ALFRED JARRY

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Accepting that these lists are really a poor way to select a restaurant (Stephen W says it all), I can't help pointing out that little Belgium has 3 nominees here - from the innovative Hof van Cleve in Kruishoutem (near Gent) via De Karmeliet (Bruges) to the very very classic Comme Chez Soi in Brussels.

Leaving aside Monaco, this seems to be the highest per capita representation for any country which only confirms my long held prejudice that Belgium is one of the best places to eat in the world.

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On another matter, I’m surprised that no one has questioned the high score for Gagnaire and presence of Bocuse.

Well, the presence of Bocuse is the very thing that renders this list useless to me.

Although I *am* looking forward to my trip to elBulli in exactly 2 weeks...

Si

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I note with amusement that the Chairperson of the "France" panel is credited on the "World's 50 Best Restaurants" website with being the author of many publications including.

I know everyone is kidding around here but Francois Simon is really a pretty informed guy, enough to write the aforementioned book poking fun at himself and other critics. Lately, he’s taken a somewhat contrarian turn and his French is usually beyond me, but he’s never dull, stupid or inaccurate.

On another matter, I’m surprised that no one has questioned the high score for Gagnaire and presence of Bocuse.

As much as we might respect Restaurant magazine's opinions, and those of this informed league, did you find it slightly disrespectful that about 4/5ths of the world's restaurants were ignored?

Interested in your thoughts,

J.

from the thinly veneered desk of:

Jamie Maw

Food Editor

Vancouver magazine

www.vancouvermagazine.com

Foodblog: In the Belly of the Feast - Eating BC

"Profumo profondo della mia carne"

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Anyway, the only thing these lists are good for is drumming up interest from a general public that probably knows very little,and is attracted to the sensationalism of it all.

Anti-alcoholics are unfortunates in the grip of water, that terrible poison, so corrosive that out of all substances it has been chosen for washing and scouring, and a drop of water added to a clear liquid like Absinthe, muddles it." ALFRED JARRY

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Accepting that these lists are really a poor way to select a restaurant (Stephen W says it all)

When I was much younger (don't ask) and in France much less (alas), I used to assiduously clip and store articles like this and those from Gourmet and the New York Times, etc and try and triangulate recommendations with the Red Michelin + GaultMillau, etc. Well, sure, now we have eGullet, bless Steve and Jason and the crew, but I still (as Bux figured out when he asked me to do the Digest) read, print out, clip and collect articles and reviews and prioritize where I'm going next. For those who come to Paris or Barcelona or Bruxelles or wherever once every few years, why not? Newspapers and magazines are in business after all to sell and readership surveys show that polls such as these are read and used. Besides, for those of us far superior to those who slavishly follow fashion, it's amusing to watch. N'est pas?

John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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John. Thanks for the post. I find any list coming from anyone almost alwayself-serving anyway. Yet I confess that I find this list, just like Zagat's, Michelin's, Gault-Millau's and especially from those who post in this forum amusing, entertaining, and even a helpful guide in exploring these different restos.

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A list that includes St. John among the fifty best restaurants in the world has little credit to me, John, or at least tells me a lot about the demographics of those 600 hundreds professionals.

The shocking aspect, if we look at it with some time perspective, is that the first French restaurant comes in the third place and that only three French restaurants are in the top ten.

The inclusion of St. John is actually one of the redeeming qualities of this list (tho not placed as it was below Berasategui). That and seeing more Spanish restos, though again Mugartiz # 10 and Celler de Can Roca at 21? WHY? And no Carme Ruscalleda? The top ten make sense--well, almost--and then the list just degenerates into random chaos. Bocuse!?....And nada in Tokyo probably the world's greaest restaurant capital not just for Japanese but for Western food as well. Oh well..

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.And nada in Tokyo probably the world's greaest restaurant capital not just for Japanese but for Western food as well. Oh well..

Okaayyy.....

Anti-alcoholics are unfortunates in the grip of water, that terrible poison, so corrosive that out of all substances it has been chosen for washing and scouring, and a drop of water added to a clear liquid like Absinthe, muddles it." ALFRED JARRY

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