The Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants awards were handed out at Macau’s Wynn Palace on Tuesday night and for the first time in five years, there’s a new “best restaurant” in Asia and Malaysia’s very own Dewakan was the only Malaysian restaurant to make it to the top 50.
46th on the list, Dewakan also nabbed the title of Best Restaurant in Malaysia. Chef Darren Teoh who is the culinary mastermind behind the restaurant, takes pride in showcasing locally sourced ingredients and elevating them into edible masterpieces. In an interview with Lifestyle Asia, Teoh said,“It’s nice to be acknowledged for the work that’s being done by all in Malaysia – the farmers, the producers and other restaurants who are pushing it every day as well as our guests and the guys at the restaurant now and before.”
The glitzy ceremony is considered by many to be the Oscars of fine dining in Asia, bringing together top chefs from around the largest continent to celebrate food and drink. The list, now in its seventh year, is compiled based on votes from 300 industry insiders, including food writers, critics, chefs and restaurateurs.
Odette restaurant in Singapore walked away with the top prize, knocking Bangkok’s four-time winner, progressive Indian restaurant Gaggan, into second place. Led by chef Julien Royer, Odette is located in Singapore’s National Gallery and serves Asian-inspired modern French cuisine.
“What to say? It was not expected and we are very thankful to all the people who just love our food, our cuisine, our restaurant,” Royer said in his acceptance speech. “It’s been an incredible four years for us (since we opened the restaurant). It’s not just about food, it goes beyond that. Tonight is a very special moment for us. We are extremely happy and thankful.”
Odette’s rise up the “Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants” ranks has been swift. Named after Royer’s maternal grandmother, it received the “Asia’s Highest New Entry Award” in 2017 before rising to the number five spot in 2018. Last year, it debuted on the “World’s 50 Best Restaurants” list at No. 28.
In total, Singapore ended the night with seven restaurants on the list, including Burnt Ends (No.10) and Jaan (No.32).
Japan leads the night
But it was Japan that had the most venues in the top 50 this year — 12 to be exact. Tokyo’s Den took the No. 3 spot, making it Japan’s best restaurant for a second consecutive year. Three other restaurants in Japan also cracked the top 10: Florilège (No. 5), Narisawa (No. 8) and Nihonryori RyuGin (No. 9).
Meanwhile, the “Highest New Entry Award” went to Bangkok restaurant Gaa, which snagged the No. 16 spot on the “Asia’s Best” list. Located on the same tiny street as Gaggan, it’s led by executive chef Garima Arora, who was named Asia’s Best Female Chef 2019 and last year became the first Indian woman to win a Michelin star.
A total of 10 new entries appeared on the 2019 “Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants” list.
Here are all the winners for 2019:
1. Odette, Singapore
2. Gaggan, Bangkok
3. Den, Tokyo
4. Suhring, Bangkok
5. Florilege, Tokyo
6. Ultraviolet by Paul Pairet, Shanghai
7. Mume, Taipei
8. Narisawa, Tokyo
9. Nihonryori Ryugin, Tokyo
10. Burnt Ends, Singapore
11. The Chairman, Hong Kong
12. 8 1/2 Otto e Mezzo, Hong Kong
13. Mingles, Seoul
14. La Cime, Osaka, Japan
15. Belon, Hong Kong
16 Gaa , Bangkok (New entry)
17. Indian Accent, India
18. Il Ristorante — Luca Fantin, Tokyo
19. Bo.lan, Bangkok
20. Le Du, Bangkok
21. Amber, Hong Kong
22. Nahm, Bangkok
23. Sazenka, Tokyo (New entry)
24. La Maison de La Nature Goh, Fukuoka, Japan
25. Sushi Saito, Tokyo
26. L’Effervescence, Tokyo
27. Jade Dragon, Macau
28. Paste, Bangkok
29. Fu He Hui, Shanghai
30. RAW, Taipei
31. Shoun Ryugin, Taipei
32. Jaan, Singapore
33. Les Amis, Singapore
34. Vea, Hong Kong (New entry)
35. Ministry of Crab, Sri Lanka
36. Wing Lei Palace, Macau (New entry)
37. Neighborhood, Hong Kong
38. Lung King Heen, Hong Kong
39. Nouri, Singapore (New entry)
40. Waku Ghin, Singapore
41. Toc Toc, Seoul
42. Locavore, Bali
43. Toyo Eatery, Manila (New entry)
44. Seventh Son, Hong Kong (New entry)
45. Quintessence, Tokyo
46. Dewakan, Kuala Lumpur (New entry)
47. Sugalabo, Tokyo
48. Sorn, Bangkok (New entry)
49. Corner House, Singapore
50. Ta Vie, Hong Kong
Source: Karla Cripps/CNN International
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