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Best Restaurants in the World

Updated on May 8, 2016

Nowadays, food is all the hype. It's in mainstream media, TV, internet, Twitter, Facebook, IPhone apps and movies. Chefs are celebrities. Restaurants are shrines. With all this hoopla, I ask you, what are the best restaurants in the world? There is the Guide Michelin, but it only rates individual restaurants. On Monday, April 26th, Restaurant Magazine announced its' selections for the 2014 World's 50 Best Restaurants. Sponsored by S. Pellegrino, the awards gala was held at Guildhall in London.

History of the World's 50 Best Restaurants

The list began in 2002, by a then upstart trade publication, Restaurant Magazine, intended solely for chefs and restauranteurs in the UK. El Bulli, the renowned Spanish restaurant, took the top spot in 2002. By the next year, the global demand for the list had intensified. The magazine produced its' 2003 version including a celebratory winners' soiree in London. In 2003, The French Laundry, Thomas Kellers' California flagship was #1. The tradition was established, every spring, the food world buzzes about who will be the numero uno. The current selection process involves a very detailed global participation.The World's 50 Best Academy was established. The world is divided into 26 regions with each region having a chairperson, who selects 30 other participants who vote for the eventual winners. That's 806 people, food critics, journalists, chefs, restauranteurs, and gourmands from around the world, responsible for the yearly rankings. Each academy member has five nominations, two from their own region and three others from around the world. That's 4030 votes to establish the winner!

2010: El Bulli's Reign Is Over

The biggest surprise in 2010 is, El Bulli's four year reign as top restaurant in the world has ended. This years rankings showed a major shuffle, especially in the top ten. Spain placed four and the US had three restaurants in that group. And France, astonishingly, had none. A typical meal in one these establishments could consist of 7-30 courses, take from 2-4 hours and cost anywhere from several hundred to well over a thousand dollars per diner depending on your menu selections.

In the next two years, Noma, a Copenhagen restaurant, took the top honor. Know for using local indigenous ingredients of Scandinavia prepared simply but presented in very imaginative way.

Every year in April, the culinary world waits with bated breath to see who'll be #!!

Behind the Scenes at the World's #1 Restaurant

Noma's Baby Carrots with Edible Soil   Courtesy of World's 50 Best
Noma's Baby Carrots with Edible Soil Courtesy of World's 50 Best

The World's Best 50 Restaurants 2014

The 2014 Top Five are:


Located in Copenhagen, Denmark, Noma is pioneering a new approach to Nordic cuisine. Esteemed Chef/Owner Rene Redzepi brings to Noma extensive experience in 3-star Michelin restaurants most notably The French Laundry, El Bulli, and Jardins De Sens.

*Note: NOMA: Time and Place in Nordic Cuisine a cookbook by Chef Rene Redzepi has just been released, and will be available in the U.S. in the near future. Pre-order Now! (see below)

El Celler de Can Roca

The logo that represents El Celler de Can Roca is an ‘R’ with a difference. The quirk is that the letter that evokes the family name has three ‘legs’ – each representing one of the three Roca brothers, who have combined their diverse skills to such extraordinary effect. This is a Catalan family restaurant through and through, and yet it is also now the best restaurant in the world.

Osteria Francescana

Tradition and modernity collide in spectacular fashion at Osteria Francescana with chef-patron Massimo Bottura’s sense of fun and headline-grabbing cooking. . Brilliant yet eccentric, Bottura’s artistic, show-stopping food has secured him a fervent following.

Eleven Madison Park

Chef Daniel Humm and general manager Will Guidara’s sleek Art Deco restaurant offers a masterclass in surprise. From the mysterious string-tied box that kicks off proceedings to the waiter affixing a meat grinder to the table midway through the meal, little can be anticipated. What diners can rely on, however, is a dining experience that is as delightful as it is engaging.

Dinner by Heston Blumenthal

t may have launched as The Fat Duck’s young townie cousin but, since opening in 2011, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal has rapidly grown up to become widely celebrated in its own right. Signature dishes including Meat Fruit and Tipsy Cake with spit-roast pineapple have already gained iconic status around the world and Dinner continues to wow its patrons with ever-evolving creations.

Grant Achatz and Thomas Keller in the Per Se Kitchen Courtesy of Steven Richter
Grant Achatz and Thomas Keller in the Per Se Kitchen Courtesy of Steven Richter

Desert @ Alinea

Best Restaurants around the World

The 2013 awards were significant for U.S.Restaurants. The highest ranked U.S. Restaurant was Eleven Madison Park at #5, followed by Per Se at #11, Alinea at #15 and Le Bernardin at #19. Eleven Madison Park, Per Se and Le Bernardin are located in New York City. Alinea is in Chicago.

There you have it , the best restaurants in the world for 2013. Food journalists, critics, bloggers, chefs and restauranteurs around the world will both praise and debate the rankings, probably until the awards are announced in 2014. I would give up my right arm to dine in any of these temples of haute cuisine. I'm salivating just thinking about it. Well for now, all I can do is dream.


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    • BarefootFoodie profile image


      8 years ago from Northern Illinois, USA

      About a year ago, I read an article about the best seafood restaurants in the US. Among them was the Lynnhaven Fish House in Virginia Beach, Va. Having eaten there, I can say that it really is pretty good.

    • Jai Warren profile imageAUTHOR

      Jai Warren 

      9 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

      April 2011!!! Thanks Bret E... you 're one lucky guy.


    • profile image

      Bret E. 

      9 years ago

      The next restaurants ranking by restaurant magazine will be released pretty soon, is that right? I had the chance to eat at a few places in europe that made the list last year, including noma. Just amazing how far culinary creativity can go.. thanks for sharing

    • Jai Warren profile imageAUTHOR

      Jai Warren 

      10 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

      Carolyn, I always look forward to the annual announcement by Restaurant Magazine. It amazes me, the lengths these chefs will go, to produce unbelievable food. Thanks for visiting and commenting. Ciao!

    • profile image

      Carolyn Jung 

      10 years ago

      I think it's so fascinating that the Denmark restaurant got the top spot this year. It's so admirable what they're attempting to do there by cooking with only local, seasonal ingredients -- not an easy feat in that part of the world, either.

    • Jai Warren profile imageAUTHOR

      Jai Warren 

      10 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

      Thanks jasonycc. I'd love to eat at any of these fabulous places. Alinea is in Chicago, not far from my home town. Maybe someday! All the best, Ciao.

    • jasonycc profile image


      10 years ago from South East Asia

      Mouth watering... wish i could travel round the world to check out these restaurants. Well for now, reading a great hub like this one is good enough. Thank you.

    • Jai Warren profile imageAUTHOR

      Jai Warren 

      10 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

      Hi Lis. I've always been fascinated with high end restaurants and the ultimate dining experience. Had fun with this Hub. Glad you liked it... have a safe trip! Mangia bene, Ciao!

    • liswilliams profile image


      10 years ago from South Africa

      Hi Jai, great stuff here

      I recognize some of these. Planning on an overseas trip next month and hope to check out some great places to eat.

      thanks a lot

    • Jai Warren profile imageAUTHOR

      Jai Warren 

      10 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

      Thank you for visiting... Ciao!

    • profile image

      Best Restaurant 

      10 years ago

      this blog shows all best restaurant in the world . the food of these restaurant are awosome. so you can also add restaurant ..thanks.................

    • Jai Warren profile imageAUTHOR

      Jai Warren 

      10 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

      My pleasure! It would be a dream come true for me too. Thanks my friend, Ciao.

    • prasetio30 profile image


      10 years ago from malang-indonesia

      Good information from you, my friend. I'll visit one of these restaurant someday. Thanks for share with us.

    • Jai Warren profile imageAUTHOR

      Jai Warren 

      10 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

      I'm boarding my private jet as I comment(via Iphone). Thomas will be glad to see the two of us. I may be fashionably late though! ;)))

    • wavegirl22 profile image


      10 years ago from New York, NY

      I made us reservations for tonight at Per Se :) 7:30 Sharp . .NY time of course .. so dont be late:)

      Thumbs up on this Hub rated upwards, awesome and of course useful;))))))))

    • Jai Warren profile imageAUTHOR

      Jai Warren 

      10 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

      Steve, wouldn't it be fabulous to visit just a few of these great restaurants? Three in the top 10 are here in the USA. Thanks for visiting! Ciao.

    • SteveoMc profile image


      10 years ago from Pacific NorthWest

      You gave me an incentive to start traveling. To eat of course. Just what I don't need. Thanks

    • Jai Warren profile imageAUTHOR

      Jai Warren 

      10 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

      Thanks Katie! How about a globetrotting adventure, visiting all these great eating experiences? Pure Heaven. And, about 50 extra pounds! :) Ciao.

    • katiem2 profile image

      Katie McMurray 

      10 years ago from Westerville

      A Great treasure of great restaurants in the world, I want to visit and experience them all....WOW

      Thank You for such a stimulating treat. Peace :)

    • Jai Warren profile imageAUTHOR

      Jai Warren 

      10 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

      Lady E, The Fat Duck is a wonderful restaurant and the chef/owner, Heston Blumenthal is a real character. Let me know if you give it a try. For the past several years, Spain has been culinary nirvana. Their chefs have been re-inventing how food is prepared and eaten. UK had a very good showing in the top 50, as did the US. Thanks and all the best! :)

    • Lady_E profile image


      10 years ago from London, UK

      Interesting Hub - I love to eat out, so it's nice to know. I've made a note of the Fat Duck as that is the closest one to me, but I'm curious to know why 3 of those 5 are in Spain.

      Ps. There's a nice google Ad on your page - "London's Best Restaurants", but I'm not sure if Hubbers are allowed to click on Ads.

      Anyway, great Hub. :)

    • Jai Warren profile imageAUTHOR

      Jai Warren 

      10 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

      GL, you just put the biggest smile on my face! Glad you enjoyed it. Ferran Adria decided that he wanted to rethink the restaurant's concept, so he's closing el Bulli for a time. I believe he will do something big in the future. Again, thanks for the kind words!

    • Green Lotus profile image


      10 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      Oh my God! This is bookmarked!!! First off let me say, I am forwarding you Hub to at least 3 foodies in my family. What a gem Jai. If one of my dreams comes true, it will be to visit at least 5 of the top ten best, and you have done all the work. Excellent! I'm saddened and surprised that El Bulli is closing. I wonder why? I knew they had a 2 year waiting list, so I better get on it now. A big thumbs up!!

    • Jai Warren profile imageAUTHOR

      Jai Warren 

      10 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

      Thanks for visiting. Yes, we all have different tastes and I'm sure there's some politics involved but, it's just fun to see how these food professionals rank the world's best. Ciao!

    • telltale profile image


      10 years ago

      I have always wondered how the "Best" restaurants are chosen to be so. Somehow, it's difficult to say which is the best, as what I know, different people have different taste for food, and different culture and so forth. Now, I have an insight on how this is done without having to read the book. Thanks for the hub.

    • Jai Warren profile imageAUTHOR

      Jai Warren 

      10 years ago from Dallas, Deep Ellum, Texas

      That was the fastest comment I've ever had on one of my Hubs. Thanks for visiting and being the first. Glad you enjoyed it. :)

    • DustinsMom profile image


      10 years ago from USA

      Great hub, enjoyed the photos and an impressive list.


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