For once, Thailand and Singapore are on par. They shared the first rank as the most awarded destinations in culinary at the prestigious ceremony of Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2017 on Tuesday night in Bangkok. Both destinations can proudly claim to have 9 restaurants among ASEAN’s top tables. Outside ASEAN, Japan received also awards for 9 restaurants while Hong Kong had seven restaurants being recognised among the top 50.
In other ASEAN countries, only Indonesia and the Philippines managed to secure one awarded restaurant each. Neither Malaysia or Vietnam managed to have one entry while Cambodia -which was present in 2015 and 2016 with Cuisine Wat Damnak in Siem Reap, an international recognition for the Kingdom’ emerging culinary stage-dropped out of the list.
The event is an important benchmark for all Asian countries which over the last decade are increasingly recognising the importance of culinary tourism. They are now strategical units in Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand to promote culinary and gastronomy tours.
Thailand has seen the biggest jump in the number of awared restaurants. The Kingdom had five awarded entries in 2015, four in 2016 and this year nine while Singapore has been loosing one restaurant. The city state used to have 10 restaurants in 2015 and 2016.
Gaggan, Bangkok, claims the No.1 spot for a third consecutive year thanks to its permanently reinvented culinary experience . Gaggan retains the dual titles of The Best Restaurant in Asia, sponsored by S.Pellegrino & Acqua Panna, and The Best Restaurant in Thailand, sponsored by S.Pellegrino & Acqua Panna. Second best is Restaurant André in Singapore, which managed to gain one rank.
The 2017 list welcomes 10 new entries, including four from Thailand. The four new Bangkok restaurants are Sühring (No.13), The Dining Room at The House on Sathorn (No.36), Le Du (No.37) and L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon Bangkok (No.40).
Singapore showed only one new entry, Odette. The restaurant received the Highest New Entry Award. Launched in November 2015, chef-owner Julien Royer’s restaurant at the iconic National Gallery Singapore debuts at No.9, the highest new entry in the history of the list. Serving Asian-inspired modern French cuisine, each dish at Odette is presented with impeccable style and characteristic perfection.
Also representing Thailand are familiar favourites: Nahm gained three ranks, rising from 8 to rank 5; Issaya Siamese Club (No.21), Eat Me (No.31) were also among the top best while Bo.Lan (No.19) made a welcome return to the list.