For the first time, Bangkok was organising the Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016, a glamorous event which has all the attributes of a Hollywood Awards Ceremony. The venue was the beautiful Italianate Style Sathorn Mansion, built hundred years ago by a rich Thai Chinese Tycoon.
Organised by William Reed Media, Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants list is an annual snapshot of the opinions and experiences of over 300 independent restaurant industry experts in Asia belonging to the Diners Club Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants Academy. What constitutes ’best’ is left to the judgment of these trusted and well-travelled gourmets. The voting process and its results are subject to independent adjudication by world-renowned professional services consultancy Deloitte.
Countries included in the voting in Asia are: Bangladesh, Myanmar, Bhutan, Brunei, Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Laos, Macao, Malaysia, Maldives, Micronesia, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Timor-Leste and Vietnam.
ASEAN countries fared very well with 16 restaurants being among the top 50. Singapore got the most awards with 9 restaurants being recognized followed by Thailand with 4 restaurants located in Bangkok. Bangkok was indeed crowned with the Best Restaurant in Asia as Gaggan won for the second year in a row the much coveted Top position. Gaggan is a restaurant serving a delicate fragrant Indian cuisine with a twist of modernity and Thai influences. Restaurant André in Singapore was ranked number 3 in the list.
Manila “Gallery Vask” was a new entry and the only restaurant in the Philippines to get the award. For the first time, Cambodia joined the ranking with Wat Damnak in Siem Reap being rewarded for its flavourful cuisine while Bali Locavore was recognised as Indonesia’s best restaurant. Surprisingly, neither Malaysia nor Vietnam made their way into the Top 50. The absence of both countries is rather a surprise as both also have their share of excellent restaurants…
Some other awards crowned ASEAN Chefs dedication for high cuisine. Asia’s Best Female Chef went to Margarita Forès, from Cibo Grace Park Lusso in Manila; a Diners Club Lifetime Achievement Award was given to David Thompson, of Bangkok famed “Nahm”. Asia’s Best Patry Chef was given to Cheryl Koh, a Singaporean running pastry shop Tarte.
List of ASEAN TOP 50 Best Restaurants
1- Gaggan, Bangkok
3- Restaurant André, Singapore
6- Waku Ghin, Singapore
8- Nahm, Bangkok
12- Les Amis, Singapore
14- Burnt Ends, Singapore
17- Corner House, Singapore
19- Issaya Siamese Club, Bangkok
21- Shinji by Kanesaka, Singapore
23- Eat Me, Bangkok
31- Tippling Club, Singapore
36- Iggy’s, Singapore
38- Wild Rocket, Singapore
39- Gallery Vask, Manila
43- Cuisine Wat Damnak, Siem Reap
49- Locavore, Bali