The best 50 restaurants in the world

Spain's El Celler de Can Roca, a Catalan family restaurant through and through, has been named the S.Pellegrino World’s Best Restaurant 2013, knocking René Redzepi and his team from Noma in Denmark from the coveted top spot which they had held for three years in a row.

Australian highlights


  • Attica, Melbourne, wins Best Restaurant in Australasia and takes home the ‘Highest New Entry’ award, making its debut on the list at no.21
  • Peter Gilmore’s Quay, Sydney, ranks no.48 on the list
  • David Thompson climbs 18 places to no. 32 on the list with Nahm in Bangkok
  • Brett Graham at The Ledbury in London moves up one place to no. 13

After seven years waiting in the wings, the Roca brothers (pictured top) have claimed the coveted number one spot on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list, sponsored by S.Pellegrino & Acqua Panna.

El Celler de Can Roca in Girona has long been hailed as one of Spain’s most exciting places to eat and having spent two years at no.2 on the list, it has swapped places with Denmark’s Noma, which held the top ranking for the last three years.

The Roca brothers’ restaurant has gained global acclaim for its combination of Catalan dishes and cutting edge techniques and the passion that they share for hospitality. Joan heads up the kitchen, Jordi is head pastry chef and Josep is head sommelier, in charge of front of house. Together they make a formidable team, creating a truly memorable dining experience.

El Celler believes in free-style cooking, with a commitment to the avant-garde, but remaining faithful to the memory of different generations of the family's ancestors, all dedicated to feeding people. Its philosophy is one of ‘emotional cuisine’, with different ingredients chosen to take diners back to childhood memories and a specific place in their past.

Supported by El Celler’s rise to the top spot on the list, Spain continues to dominate the top 10 with San Sebastian’s Mugaritz at no.4 (Chefs’ Choice award in 2012) and Arzak (Elena Arzak Espina – The Veuve Clicquot World’s Best Female Chef 2012) remaining at no.8. The country has five restaurants on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list in total. Quique Dacosta who is renowned for his eco-cuisine and sits amongst the Spanish avant garde giants, climbs 14 places to no.26. Asador Etxebarri features at no. 44 on the list.

Melbourne’s Attica wins The Acqua Panna Best Restaurant in Australasia award and takes home the Highest New Entry award, sponsored by, making its debut on the list at no.21.

Executive chef Ben Shewry has carved himself a reputation for respecting nature and the environment, and working carefully with ingredients to demonstrate their pure flavour and texture. Believing a chef should express himself through his cooking, Shewry takes his own experiences and memories, often from childhood, and attempts to portray them through several dishes on Attica’s tasting menu. The result is a playful yet humble reminder of all that Mother Nature has to offer.

Peter Gilmore’s restaurant Quay, overlooking Sydney Harbour, ranks no. 48 and appears on the list for the fifth consecutive year. Gilmore prides himself on being one of the first chefs to refocus on the natural world and an organic aesthetic and describes his cuisine as ‘food inspired by nature’. Renowned for his signature dishes, such as the white nectarine snow egg and pig jowl with maltose crackling, Gilmore is a leader in culinary craftsmanship.

Australian-born chef David Thompson’s Nahm in Bangkok climbs 18 places to no.32. Earlier this year at Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants in Singapore, Nahm placed no.3 on the list. David is renowned as a world authority on Thai food. He established himself with Darley Street Thai in Sydney, a restaurant that opened in 1991 and was voted 'Best Thai Restaurant' by the Sydney Morning Herald eight years in a row. It is a remarkable achievement for an Australian chef cooking a foreign cuisine to rank third in Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2013 and 32nd  in the world.

Brett Graham, born and bred in Australia, wins the no.13 place for his Notting Hill, London restaurant, The Ledbury, which is up one place from last year. Brett began his cooking career in Newcastle, New South Wales in a simple fish restaurant before moving to Sydney, where he won the Josephine Pignolet Award, which granted him a trip to the UK. The Ledbury is renowned for exceptional service standards and his low-key but refined cooking style.

Spain’s counterparts in South America also have plenty to celebrate with Peru’s Astrid Y Gaston rising 21 places to be crowned the ‘Highest Climber’ on the list, an award sponsored by Gaggenau. The continent has six restaurants on the list with Alex Atala’s D.O.M at no. 6, once again named The Acqua Panna Best Restaurant in South America. The evolution and strength of Latin American gastronomy has called for continent specific recognition and William Reed Business Media is proud to announce it will be holding Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards in Peru this September, sponsored by Cusqueña with the support of PromPeru. 

Following the success of this spring’s inaugural Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards in Singapore, sponsored by S.Pellegrino & Acqua Panna, Asia now boasts seven restaurants in the world ranking including Asia’s highest ranked restaurant Narisawa, at no.20. The Tokyo restaurant scooped both the Acqua Panna Best Restaurant in Asia award and the inaugural Sustainable Restaurant Award, sponsored by Zacapa. The Sustainable Restaurant Award is presented to the restaurant within the ranks of the 50 Best which demonstrates the highest environmental and social responsibility rating, audited by the Sustainable Restaurant Association.

This year’s European highlights include Italy’s Osteria Francescana rising two places to number three on the list and Nadia Santini from restaurant Dal Pescatore in Italy being named The Veuve Clicquot World’s Best Female Chef. France boasts six restaurants in the ranking with culinary legend Alain Ducasse being honoured with this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award, sponsored by Diners Club International®. The UK contingent remains the same with last year’s highest new entry, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, rising two places to no.7, Brett Graham’s The Ledbury up one place to no. 13 and The Fat Duck ranked at no.33.

With six restaurants on the list, the USA remains a key international culinary force, matching France as the country with the highest number of restaurants on this year’s list. Best in class goes to Eleven Madison Park, no.5 on the list and taking the award for the Acqua Panna Best Restaurant in North America, from fellow New Yorker Per Se, which ranks at no.11 this year. The individual Chefs’ Choice Award, sponsored by Silestone by Cosentino and voted for by the chefs within The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list, goes to Grant Achatz of Alinea in Chicago, which ranks at no.15.

This year’s One To Watch Award, sponsored by Cacao Barry, recognises South Africa’s The Test Kitchen. British-born chef Luke Dale-Roberts’ first solo restaurant is located in a shabby-chic suburb of Cape Town where his eclectic style results in unequivocally delicious food.

The World’s 50 Best Restaurants is organised by Restaurant magazine and the awards were presented in the company of the world’s most influential restaurateurs, finest chefs and international media at London’s Guildhall on 29th April.

The list is created from the votes of The Diners Club® World’s 50 Best Restaurants Academy, an influential group of over 900 international leaders in the restaurant industry. The Academy comprises 26 separate regions around the world, each of which has 36 members, including a chairperson, and each member can cast seven votes. Of those seven, at least three votes must recognise restaurants outside of their own region.

The panel in each region is made up of food critics, chefs, restaurateurs and highly regarded ‘gastronomes’. Members list their choices in order of preference, based on their best restaurant experiences of the previous 18 months. There is no pre-determined check-list of criteria.

Kerry Heaney


Just the best food and wine Top Cuts for Brisbane and beyond

This week in Top Cuts

  • New chef for CBD gastro bar
  • Tasting paradise in Port Douglas with Ed+bK
  • Ross Street food bliss
  • Dom gets Fresh on Sundays with Ed+bK
  • New Surfers Paradise bar, new Woolloongabba restaurant
  • Wine dinner in Noosa,
  • Taste Queensland at Stokehouse

New chef for CBD gastobar


With Ben Veldhuijzen (ex Urbane & The Euro) as new head chef, The Villager in George Street, has morphed from a hotel into a gastrobar and supper club. Their new winter menu includes tarted up comfort food with an edge such as crisp pork belly and pumpkin two ways and a trio of lamb cutlets followed by a chocolate stout cake or ice cream sandwich (pictured above) for dessert.

Tasting paradise


A Taste of Paradise is Port Douglas Carnivale’s newest food event, to be held at the Sugar Wharf on Saturday, May 25.

The all-day event will showcase the region’s best produce with cooking demonstrations and free food, wine and beer tastings from many well-regarded suppliers including Mungalli Creek, Daintree Estate Chocolates, Julatten Earth Foods, Vanilla Australia, Backfatter’s Pig Farm and Daintree Barramundi Farm. Cooking demonstrations begin on the main stage at 10am with celebrity chef Ben O’Donohue of Surfing the Menu fame, supported by local star chefs who will take the main stage. I’ll also be there on stage with Natascha Mirosch talking the chefs through their presentations.

Look out for popular My Kitchen Rules contestants from the 2012 series of the show, Leigh Sexton, one half of last year’s winning Team South Australia, and David Hopgood the popular soldier from Townsville, who will also be cooking at the event.

Pig out at the School Canteen

If your workplace is around the culinary desert of Ross Street, Newstead, relief is in sight!
The Golden Pig is now open Monday to Fridays for breakfast and lunch, selling savoury food as well as coffee and cakes.  The eat-in or takeout food  menu includes favourites such as Poached seasonal fruit with Greek yoghurt and Toasted Muesli, Egg and Bacon Frittata in Crusty roll with Rocket and Tomato Relish, Five Spiced Chicken, Asian salad, Siracha and Mayo in Crusty Roll and Roast Duck, Chilli Jam, Provolone and Spinach Toasty plus daily specials such as curry or laksa. The Golden Pig

Fresh on Sundays



Tune in to Dominque Rizzo’s new program Fresh on Sunday from 12 -2pm on Radio 4BC. Grab tasty recipe ideas, discover the latest food trends, kitchen gadgets and cooking tips, learn what’s in season, hear from top Australian producers, local and celebrity chefs, writers, food personalities and Eat,drink+beKerry.  I’m often chatting with Dom around 1.30pm. Available on digital and live stream.

Pure food

If you are thinking of exploring Sicily, the Aeolian Islands, Puglia, Greece and Germany, take a look at Dominque Rizzo’s new tours designed to offer a culinary journey which encompass an experience deep in history and local traditions in food, culture, art and family life.

At the Helm



The old Titanium Bar in Ferny Avenue has been transformed with a massive renovation into Helm Surfers, a new drinking and dining hot-spot from the folks at Helm Sydney.

Architects Pecvonhartel, the team behind Sydney’s award-winning restaurant Jamie’s Italian, masterminded the sleek, nautical fit-out inspired by its sister venue in Sydney. Chef Nicolas Ash has created an easy-eating menu packed with pub-inspired favourites, share platters, freshly made pizzas and bar snacks.  Otherwise tuck into a heartier meal at the bistro’s communal table with a selection of expertly prepared pasta, salads and burgers on offer.  Open every day from 12pm for lunch and dinner.

Wine dinner at Sails


Expect a subtle, tantalising experience when pioneer Margaret River winemaker Tim Lovett of Leeuwin Estate meets the driving force behind Noosa’s legendary Sails restaurant for 15 years, Paul Leete, over a five course degustation. The Leeuwin Estate Wine Dinner on Friday May 17. The evening will start with the sensational view at Sails as you watch the sun set over Laguna Bay with canapés and a glass of 2008 Brut Pinot Noir Chardonnay.  It will be followed by second course and a Hervey Bay scallop ceviche, Tostada, sweet potato, corn, lime, avocado and a glass of 2012 Art Series Riesling. Tickets are $140 per person with arrival at 6:30pm. Find out more from Melita.  This is a great add on if you are in Noosa for the Food and Wine Festival.

Step into Asia



Asia has overtaken France with the opening of Birdcage Pan Asian Cuisine restaurant at Woolloongabba in the heritage-listed Moreton Rubber Works building which formerly housed Bistrot Bistro.

Owner Darryl Marsden has called on his 30 years of experience around the world to recreate the Asian traditions of sharing, appreciating and enjoying food with family and friends.

“Throughout my many roles in Malaysia, Indonesia and my travel in South East Asia, I have had the opportunity to enjoy many of the flavours from across the region,” says Darryl. “I have put together a menu that incorporates some of my favourite dishes using the wonderful produce we have available here in Australia.”

BirdCage’s bar will also offer more than a dozen specialty cocktails ranging from Ho Chi Minh Mary – a chili-infused Bloody Mary topped with beer – not for the faint hearted, to the BirdCage Martini with white rum, fresh ginger and lemongrass with freshly squeezed lemon juice double strained into a chilled martini glass.

A taste of Queensland at Stokehouse

If you’re missing the Noosa Food & Wine Festival this year, never fear – Stokehouse will be serving up specials throughout May in celebration of their chefs’ participation in the festival. Head Chef Tony Kelly and Sous Chef Richard Ousby will be taking part in the festival and you can try their signature dishes for yourself from the restaurant’s specials board. Try Tony’s Cannelloni of Noosa Spanner Crab, or Richard’s Wild shot hare and Salt crusted salmon creations, each celebrating the best of fresh Queensland produce. Book your table at Stokehouse: (07) 3020 0600.

Kerry Heaney

Noosa Farmers Market - I went and I saw ..

When it comes to farmers markets its hard to get better than this.

Noosa Farmers Market draws its produce from the famed Noosa UNESCO Biosphere Reserve and just beyond. It's a market filled with farmers selling their own fruit and veg, beef and chicken and bananas that taste like bananas.

There's also a wide selection of foods to eat from street food favourites to sinful French treats.

You can eat your way around the market for breakfast with a wide range of options from smoked salmon omelettes for $9.50 (my choice) or a BLT + egg burger (K2's choice). For the more health inclined there was also activated muesli on offer or the most delicious aroma of almond croissants.

Here’s what I saw-

This market is held every Sunday at  The Noosa Australian Rules Football Club on Weyba Road, Noosaville between 7am and 12pm.

Bottom line: a great way to experience the flavours of Noosa Best tip: take a big bag and a cooler pack for all your take home goodies.

Other Noosa stories you might like

Disclaimer: this is not a paid post


Eves on the River, Teneriffe.

On a sunny Sunday autumn day in Brisbane there's no finer place to be than down by the river so that's where we went to celebrate a much loved mother's birthday.

Eves by the River has stood the test of time providing guests with more ten years of dining pleasure.  The rear terrace is enclosed from tough weather providing a large, relaxed dining space.  Inside it is a little more cosy.

Set back from the river by a wide grassy lawn studded with mature trees, palms and the odd sculpture, Eves is a family friendly destination for all ages.

The cuisine is modern Australian with menu choices and flavours that will suit most paletes, good service and well presented dishes.  I was impressed by the menu which not only clearly identifies vegetarian options but also dishes designed to be suitable for coeliacs.  There's also a glossary to explain some of the menu items.

Zucchini & Haloumi Rosti

Macadamia Crusted Baramundi

Duck & Porcini Ragu

Sumac lamb fillet

This is food designed to suit a non-demanding palate. You'll find the chilli is sparse and the garlic probably the same.  This is great when you want everyone, from grandma to the youngest child, to enjoy their meal.

Bottom line:  Go for the view and good company.
Best tip:  Parking here is difficult to find.  Allow extra time to find a spot and be prepared to walk.

Eves on the River

Kerry Heaney 

Disclaimer: Ed+bK paid for this meal.


Catch a mullet on the run after Anzac Day!

According to the old timers, Anzac Day and the first chilly southwester signal the start of the mullet run with delicious sea mullet working their way north for the winter months.

Southern Queensland ocean beach crews will be perched on headlands ‘spotting’ patches of these winter beauties.

I've always been partial to the stronger flavour of mullet. Mullet die-hards pan fry the fillets, roe and the melt. Roe is the sacs of eggs from the female mullet (like caviar etc) and is a highly prized item in Japan and equally on the local scene. It can be smoked or fried.

Melt, from the male fish, is white and smooth in texture. It’s usually a secondary choice to roe and is best crumbed and fried.

Mullet is an ideal partner for modern Mediterranean flavours. Rich in the good oils, mullet fillets are the perfect fish to load up in the kipper box and enjoy hot kippers on a wintery day.

Look out for the pink fleshed sea mullet fillets in your local fishmonger.

Kerry Heaney


Think you know something about cocktails?

"After ten years working in hospitality I thought I knew a thing or two about making and drinking cocktails - nope," says Alexander Stone.

Nursing a hangover, Ed+bK Bar reporter Alexander Stone compiled this report on the second round of the Diageo World Class Cocktail Championship at Mr and Mrs Gs Bar, Eagle Street last Monday, where the goal was to find Queensland and Western Australia’s best bartenders.

If a ticket to Ibiza for the world final isn’t enough to inspire you, how about $100,000 to start up your own bar?

That’s just a few steps away for bartenders contenders at the Diageo World Class Cocktail Championship competition.

World Class is, as the name would suggest,  a world-wide competition that sees bartenders pitting their cocktail and their skills against thousands of others. Last year’s winner,  Australian Tim Philips,  has spent his year as world champ being flown all over the world to show everyone else how it’s done.

I’m going to be making a concerted effort to check out the winner’s new bar as I will be the first to admit that the next morning I realised that I might have enjoyed all their cocktails a bit too much.

First cocktail was by Perryn Collier of Alfred & Constance, Fortitude Valley in the Ketel One East meets West category. The influences of Perryn’s cocktail were explained using props of an old map and a model pirate ship which caught my attention straight away. The drink went down a treat.

The second drink was made by Rinna Kato of Bacchus, South Bank in the Don Julio Reposado tequila, tropical cocktail category. Rinna explained to us that punch should have five elements as she made us a drink with one of the most interesting cocktail making devices I've seen. I'm not really sure how to describe it, although my friend on the evening said it was something straight out of the movie ‘The Fifth Element’. It seems punch has come a long way from tin pineapple, lemonade and the nearest bottle of alcohol.

Andrew Bennett from The Classroom in Western Australia was the winner of the Johnnie Walker Gold Label Reserve Scotch Whisky Celebration Cocktail category. If this cocktail was supposed to be inspired by your best times of ultimate celebration, Andrew must have had some very good times. He crafted the base of the drink in an awesome looking bronze cocktail shaker and finished it off with a bottle of 23 karat gold flake infused champagne which he proceeded to open in the traditional French way with a saber. This delectable drink was certainly a show stopper.

The last drink of the night was by Nick Royds from The Walrus Club in the Bundaberg Master Distillers' Collection Dark Oak rum Gentleman's cocktail category. Embracing the true Queensland spirit he said he tried to create the ultimate gentleman’s drink for enjoying around a roaring fire. A miniature blow torch to set alight a small piece of wood really helped set the mood and get the olfactory senses going. I’ve always had a soft spot for Bundy and fire as most people who know me will tell you, so this one went down a treat for me.

Nick says while the name of his drink sounds frightening, it is really more theatrical than threatening. Mixing Bundaberg Dark Oak Rum, Banana Rooibos Syrup, Oak & Orange Bitters and black truffle and cocoa oil, the concoction is then poured into coffee pots, set alight to slightly warm through and then served in a beautiful crystal glass. Guests are then given their own sachet of oil-absorbing Tapioca Maltodextrin powder on the side, which they are encouraged to swirl into the drink until dissolved.

The four winners from this round plus eight others from the Sydney and Melbourne rounds will be showcasing their drinks for the final at the Noosa International Food & Wine Festival on May 17. Good luck to them all. I'm very envious of all the poor judges who have to try and decide between these amazing creations.

Bottom line: Sip slowly
Best tip:  Stay tuned for updates on the winner’s new bar opening

Disclaimer: Ed+bK reporter’s was a guest at this event.

Kerry Heaney


Restaurants open in Brisbane on Anzac Day

The weather has been so beautiful lately and with a public holiday on Thursday it's a great chance to enjoy good food, good wine and good friends.

Here's a list of restaurants open in Brisbane on Anzac Day, May 25, 2013

Please leave a comment below or email me if you have somewhere to add.


All venues in Queen Street Mall strip including Pig and Whistle
The Villager, from 7am
Hotel Urban

Fortitude Valley/Teneriffe

Alfred & Constance - all day and night
Bar Alto: Lunch from 11:30. The bar will be open from 1:00pm
Watt - 10am - 6pm no surcharge
Cactus Mexicana from 5pm
Cloudland from 11.30am

South Bank

Cove Bar & Dining: Trading as usual
Ole: Trading as usual
Next Door: Trading as usual
The Point Bistro: Trading as usual
Ahmets:Trading as usual

Brisbane West

Peasant: Dinner only, opening from 5:30pm
Cabiria: Dinner only, opening from 5:30pm
Sichuan Bang Bang - from 5pm
Hundred Acre Bar, Hillstone St Lucia - no surcharge

Brisbane North

Baguette - lunch and dinner - no surcharge
Byblos - 11.30am till late

Brisbane East

Raj's Palace Indian Restaurant, from 5pm

Noosa Beach House Peter Kuruvita to open in Noosa

It's hard to think of a better fit than Peter Kuruvita opening a new restaurant in Noosa on Queensland's Sunshine Coast in late May.

Peter, whose love of seafood and the beach shines through in his wildly popular television SBS series, will open Noosa Beach House Peter Kuruvita in Hastings Street, transforming the old Cato's Restaurant and Bar which fronts The Sheraton Noosa.

With a wide street frontage shaded by giant trees and a terraced interior with plenty of bar space, this site is perfect for Peter's casual but stunning food.

Just in case you have missed his rise in popularity, Peter Kuruvita is a chef, restaurateur, television presenter, author, consultant, surfer, fisherman and most importantly, a family man. He has an irrefutable passion for food, which was nurtured as a child growing up in Sri Lanka and spending time in the kitchen with his grandmother. Fresh produce, creative modern dishes, sumptuous seafood and stunning locations are just a few of the things for which he is so well known and all the more reason why Noosa is his perfect fit.

Peter established himself as one of Australia’s leading chefs in the early 2000s and for eight years was the Executive Chef at Sydney’s award winning Flying Fish Restaurant & Bar. In 2008, in partnership with the Starwood Hotels & Resorts he opened the Flying Fish Fiji, which is now referred to as the best restaurant in Fiji.

In 2009, Peter published his first cook book, “Serendip – My Sri Lankan Kitchen” which takes food lovers on a journey through the kitchen experiences of his childhood. He then presented his first television series on SBS “My Sri Lanka with Peter Kuruvita” which is a visual feast of breathtaking scenery and an incredible look at the culture and culinary diversity of Sri Lanka. 2012 saw his next series “Island Feast with Peter Kuruvita” which looked at the local cuisine of the islands of Indonesia, Vanuatu, Philippines and the Cook Islands and inspired his next cook book “My Feast with Peter Kuruvita”.

“Noosa is a place I have always loved and having the opportunity to work with Starwood again," says Peter. "The relaxed vibe of Noosa Beach House is my style of place, a casual restaurant that will grow up as the day progresses. The casual holiday vibe will be complemented by a tasty all-day lunch menu. The bar will thrive all day and all are welcome to simply relax in the sun with a cold beer or cocktail and some smart bar snacks. As the day goes on, Noosa Beach House Peter Kuruvita will evolve into a restaurant and cocktail bar worthy of this iconic strip.”

Bottom line: Add this to the long list of reasons to visit Noosa.
Best tip: Make a weekend of it and just enjoy.

Kerry Heaney

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post.

Here's a few more reasons to visit Noosa.