Danish restaurant Noma crowned world's best for second year

08:29, April 20, 2011      

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Danish restaurant Noma was crowned top of the prestigious S. Pellegrino World's 50 Best Restaurants 2011 on Monday for the second straight year.

The Copenhagen-based restaurant, managed by chef Patron Rene Redzepi, also won the Acqua Panna Best Restaurant in European at Monday night's award ceremony in London.

Specializing in Nordic cuisine, Noma beat Spanish restaurants El Celler de Can Roca and Mugaritz, which ranked second and third respectively.

Italian restaurant Osteria Francescana came fourth, also winning the coveted Chef's Choice award for its top chef Massimo Bottura.

Famous British restaurant The Fat Duck, fell two places to settle for fifth, while The Amber restaurant from China was a new entrant at number 37.

More than 800 restaurants from all over the world took part in the contest, where a panel of food critics, journalists, chefs and restaurant owners deliberated on who would make the final list of 50.

"We heartily congratulate Rene Redzepi for the difficult task of maintaining his position as the number one restaurant on our list, which underscores his commitment to redefining Nordic cuisine," said William Drew, editor of the Restaurant Magazine, which organized the list.

He said the 2011 list showed an "even greater geographical spread than previous years and recognizes the influence of fledgling culinary nations such as Peru and Russia," while also revealing the growing culinary dominance of countries such as China, Brazil and Mexico.

Typically, restaurants from France, Spain, the United States and Britain populate the list.

Noma, which is among what the Restaurant Magazine calls the "new guard of global cuisine," has engineered a gastronomic revolution by creating innovative dishes from locally sourced ingredients, and re-interpreting the use of traditional products from the Nordic kitchen.

Sea urchin and dill, beef cheek and pear, and pickled vegetables and smoked bone marrow are among the more exotic items featuring on its menu.

Asked after Monday night's ceremony about what set Noma apart from other high-end restaurants, 33-year-old Redzepi said: "Anyone can poach and present a piece of fish, but I believe we have a zeitgeist that gives us the edge."

The restaurant has featured in S. Pellegrino's top 50 restaurant list since 2006 and was placed third in 2009 before rising to the top in the past two years.

"It's even more important to win a second successive award. It shows that we're more than just a one-hit wonder," Redzepi said.

Source: Xinhua

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