The World’s 50 Best Restaurants Announced! Here It Is – Plus My “A” List! Arpege! Alinea! Atelier Crenn!

The List Of The World’s 50 Best Restaurants Has Been Announced!

Foodies always love and hate these annual lists, but it’s a delicious way to celebrate the world’s best food!

Since 2002, “The World’s 50 Best Restaurants” has released a list of the 50 greatest restaurants…as they say on their website their goal is to reflect:

“the diversity of the world’s culinary landscape. Thanks to its panel of more than 1,000 culinary experts, as well as its structured and audited voting procedure, the annual list of the world’s finest restaurants provides a snapshot of some of the best destinations for unique culinary experiences, in addition to being a barometer for global gastronomic trends.”

The dishes above come, in order, from Atelier Crenn, Arpege, and Alinea…yes, my own personal “A” list!

I have reviewed these three restaurants – all on the list this year – and here is their ranking – and my post as well!

#8: Arpege, Paris

Yes, Alex and I ate at Alain Passard’s Paris Ode To Vegetables at the end of 2015, and he was indeed a master of something people usually do NOT equate with Parisian dining!

Here is what “The World’s 50 Best Restaurants” had to say:

A legendary chef: One of a handful of cooks who have remained at the top of global fine dining for decades, Alain Passard needs little introduction. He has retained three Michelin stars at Arpège for more than two decades during times of great personal and culinary change, and in 2019 he was the recipient of the Chefs’ Choice Award, sponsored by Estrella Damm, at The World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards in Singapore.

What’s it all about? Vegetables, in short. Passard famously in 2001 announced that Arpège – until then a meat institution – was turning vegetarian, and although meat has since returned to the restaurant in smaller quantities, vegetables still take the main stage. They arrive daily from Passard’s own farms and appear on diners’ plates soon after.

Signature dishes: Despite his ever-changing menu, Passard has managed to amass a number of signature dishes over the years, some so famous that diners book months in advance for the first taste of white asparagus in spring or the arrival of black truffles in autumn. Other signature dishes include the dumplings, stuffed with seasonal vegetables, and the langoustine carpaccio with caviar.

As you’ve seen, he is a master with vegetables – and you can read about our meal by clicking here:

Another incredible dining experience made the top 50, and it also was a breakthrough moment for The Michelin Guide as well!

#35: Atelier Crenn, San Francisco

Alex and I ate at Atelier Crenn and met the Chef in the kitchen earlier this year.

Chef Dominique Crenn was awarded her third Michelin Star last year – making her the first female Chef in the United States to receive three stars…

Here is what “The World’s 50 Best Restaurants” had to say:

What makes it special: Perched on a steep hillside in Cow Hollow, San Francisco, Atelier Crenn is a serene escape from the city. Complementing the calm interior and cosy dining room is Dominique Crenn’s elegant cuisine, inspired by her childhood and her artist father.

On the menu: Based on the concept of Poetic Culinaria, Crenn’s tasting menu takes diners through a poetic sequence of stunning dishes that may include spiny lobster and its essence, geoduck tart with oyster and rosé and brioche with house-cultured butter. Superb wine pairings and seamless service are led by charming general manager Maxime Larquier, while pastry chef Juan Contreras produces iconic desserts such as the much-photographed Coconut and Pineapple. Everything is balanced so that guests leave satisfied but never uncomfortably full.

About the chef: Originally from Versailles, Crenn moved to San Francisco in 1988 and fell in love with the city’s approach to diversity and creative thinking. She made her name at Luce in San Francisco’s Intercontinental Hotel, where she earned her first Michelin star in 2009. More accolades followed: in 2012, she became the first female chef in the US to achieve two stars; in 2016 she was voted as The World’s Best Female Chef and in 2018, Atelier Crenn earned the coveted three Michelin stars.

Her cooking was magical, and it was so exciting to meet her as well…she went public recently with her battle with breast cancer, but she isn’t letting that fight slow her down…you can read more about our meal by clicking here:

Finally, what I consider one of the greatest single meals we’ve ever had was at a restaurant in Chicago:

#37: Alinea, Chicago

Yes, this is Alex watching as they “paint” her dessert onto our table! That’s just one example of the food here, thanks to Chef Grant Achetz.

Here is what “The World’s 50 Best Restaurants” had to say:

What makes it special: The key ingredient infused into every Alinea meal isn’t a mountain of caviar, or a fat puck of foie gras. Since Alinea’s debut in 2005, chef and owner Grant Achatz has built a reputation for designing dishes spiked with emotion; eliciting playful nostalgia from his diners via sophisticated riffs off a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, or pheasant served with smouldering oak leaves he calls Aromas of Fall.

What’s on the menu: Alinea has kept itself at the forefront of modern creativity via edible vanilla beans, langoustine yuba, crystal-clear pumpkin pie and what has become Alinea’s most famous dish: an edible, helium-filled, floating balloon designed by former executive chef Mike Bagale.

Best seat in the house: To commemorate Alinea’s 10th birthday, Achatz shuttered his wildly successful restaurant for four months, giving the place a total overhaul. When Alinea reopened in June 2017, the temple of haute cuisine emerged with a clean and bright look, in addition to a new dining experience: a glassed-in kitchen table. With room for four to six diners, The KT (The Kitchen Table) is where guests embark on a lengthy bespoke menu, often with more than 22 courses with interaction with chefs encouraged.

The list then offered up a bit of listory: Alinea first entered The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list in 2007, when it debuted at No.36, the Highest New Entry that year. In 2009, Alinea moved up to No.10 and advanced to No.7 the following year, when it was also the highest ranked North American restaurant. Alinea maintained its top North American spot for 2011 and moved up one position overall to No.6, which was its highest-ever ranking.

The food is simply magical, as you can see by the bacon dish they served us! You can see the entire meal here:

Of course, you should look at all of the top 50 this year – they are restaurants from all over the world! Here is the 2019 list of the 50 best restaurants!

Let me know what you think!

Categories: Art, Awards, BACON, Books / Media, chicago, Exotic Travel, Food, food blog, Food Review, Paris, Pop Culture, Recipes, Restaurants, Travel, Travel Adventures, Travel Memoir, Uncategorized, Wacky Food

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11 replies

  1. The above comment mirrors my other half’s words…He is not a fan of restaurants like that..I am… I love beautifully served food…I agree with your favourite meal and it puts me in the mind of one of my favourite British chefs…Michael O’Hare, he is known for his spectacular dishes …Great post and some awesome restaurants…Ahhhhh one day….

    Liked by 1 person

  2. A wonderous share, and now I must go eat lunch – not nearly as extravagant as what I saw here, lol 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. How many of that top 50 have you eaten in, John? I’m guessing it’s a lot of them.
    I recall my first visit to a ‘nouvelle cuisine’ restaurant, in the 1980s. An hour after we got home, I had to eat three slices of cheese on toast to fill myself up! 🙂
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. A very interesting post, John, and thanks for sharing this list.

    Liked by 1 person


  1. Break Bread With Chef Dominique Crenn! An Incredible Charity Event – Here Are Details! – johnrieber

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