Tag Archives: Restaurant


Alain Ducasse is the New Chef of Le Meurice

restaurant Le Meurice

Globally acclaimed chef Alain Ducasse is taking over management of the kitchens at Le Meurice hotel in Paris, part of the Dorchester Collection of hotels.

Starting in September, Ducasse will begin re-imagining the property’s Restaurant Le Meurice, which has three Michelin stars, and Restaurant Le Dalí.

Ducasse has already revamped two other Dorchester Collection hotels: the Plaza Athénée in Paris and The Dorchester in London. The Plaza Athénée has since closed for restoration.

Ducasse commented, “I am honoured that Franka Holtmann, general manager of Le Meurice, with the support of François Delahaye, chief operating officer of Dorchester Collection, has asked me to join Le Meurice. French cuisine has a major place, a role and an impact in the world today. I am pleased to contribute to its success in the two finest locations in Paris: Hotel Plaza Athénée and Le Meurice.”

Eat at every 3-Michelin-starred restaurant in the world

hong kong four seasons restaurant

A luxury, British website has created a once-in-a-lifetime epic travel itinerary that will take one couple to all 109, three-Michelin-starred restaurants around the world, for the cool sum of about $275,000.

It’s a six-month culinary odyssey that will take two people to the world’s top dining addresses across 12 countries, including Lung King Heen in Hong Kong, Sushi Yoshitake in Tokyo, Per Se in New York and Le Meurice in Paris.

Created by VeryFirstTo.com with www.holidaysplease.co.uk, participants will sample some of most iconic, famous and avant-garde dishes in contemorary gastronomy, such as “salmon poached in a liquorice gel” at Heston Blumenthal’s The Fat Duck and “pineapple bubbles” at Juan Mari Arzak’s Basque restaurant Arzak. Visits will average one restaurant every other day.

According to the Michelin ranking system, restaurants that boast all three stars represent dining destinations which are “worth a special journey.” Dishes are nothing short of exceptional, distinctive and precisely executed and use superlative ingredients.

Participants will stay at five-star luxury hotels such as the Trump International in New York; the Conrad in Tokyo; the Hotel de Paris in Monte Carlo; and Claridge’s in London.

Meanwhile, the same website recently sold a luxury vacation package worth $1.5 million to a wealthy Chinese man this past spring that will take him to all 962 UNESCO World Heritage Sites over two years.

The Four Seasons has also created once-in-a-lifetime travel itineraries that include an around-the-world tour with stops in Bali, Bora Bora and Hawaii in 2014, while National Geographic has likewise launched an excursion and guided tour of ancient and historical sites aboard a luxury jet next year.

Groupon Reserve

Groupon Reserve targets richer diners

Groupon Reserve

Daily online deals site Groupon has launched a new restaurant reservation platform that will offer diners deep discounts at popular addresses across the US.

Developed to help restaurants fill tables for last-minute no-shows and cancellations, Groupon Reserve will offer discounts of up to 40 percent without requiring pre-payment or vouchers.

Participating restaurants include popular dining destinations such as Le Cirque in New York, Chaya Brasserie in Los Angeles and Daniel Boulud’s db Bistro Moderne in Miami.

Because the goal is to bring in customers during slow periods and to fill in for no-shows, however, the service is likely best used among flexible diners.

Reserve is being rolled out for restaurants for now, but plans are also afoot for premium deals on beauty products, travel, entertainment, spas, salons and hotels, the company says.

The platform is currently live in cities such as Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, Miami, New York Philadelphia, San Francisco and Washington DC with plans to expand across the US and key international markets by the end of the year.

The new service is the result of Groupon’s acquisition of Savored last year, which operated on the same principle: offering discounts to customers who occupied unfilled tables.

JW Marriott Marquis Dubai Thumb

GQ magazine to open restaurant and bar in Dubai

JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai Photo

Men’s lifestyle magazine GQ is poised to open a new restaurant inside the world’s tallest hotel in Dubai.

After opening the Vogue Cafe at The Dubai Mall — The largest shopping center in the world — in May, Condé Nast International has set its sights on planting another flag at the JW Marriott Marquis Dubai.

The 994-square-meter GQ Bar will span two floors and serve contemporary cuisine. The new restaurant is set to open in October and, in GQ style, is expected to be a sleek, sophisticated space that attracts the world’s high society.

The opening of the JW Marriott Marquis in February was attended by British singer Leona Lewis, fashion designer Donna Karan, and Dubai TV personality DJ Bliss.

Dinner in the sky over Venice in June

Dinner in the Sky Venice

From June 19 to 23, guests at Hotel Cipriani on the isle of Giudecca in the Venetian Lagoon will be in for a truly celestial meal: 22 guests at a time will be invited up for a Dinner in the Sky — at a big table on a rotating platform raised 164 feet in the air over the hotel pool. Two chefs will take turns feeding the fearless guests.

Up there in the air, the paying guests will be able to relish a whole gourmet meal or just an apperitivo, prepared alternately by Cipriani Hotel chef Renato Piccolotto or Cips restaurant’s Roberto Gatto.

Those opting for the aperitif will be served appetizers and pre-dinner libations, from €50 per person. These half-hour aperitivi will be offered daily at 5:15, 6 and 6:45 PM from June 19-23.

The three-course dinner with assorted wines will cost from €250 a pop. The one-hour meals will commence daily at 8 and 9:30 PM.

Dinner in the Sky has already been served in several major cities, including Paris, London, Dubai, Las Vegas, Sydney, Monaco and Brussels.

To reserve your Dinner in the Sky: [email protected]

Grand Canal Venice Italy

restaurant tipping

Who are the world’s best tippers?

In a worldwide poll that aimed to gauge tipping habits around the globe, Germans have emerged as the most likely to leave a tip while traveling, while Italians emerged as the stingiest of tippers.

restaurant tip

In a TripAdvisor poll of more than 9,000 respondents across eight countries, 69 percent of German holidaymakers said they always leave a tip while traveling — out-tipping Americans, for whom tipping is ingrained in the service culture.

Rounding out the top five nationalities most likely to tip are Americans at 57 percent; Russians, 53 percent, Brazilians at 40 percent, and the French, 39 percent.

Among US respondents, meanwhile, helpful, friendly and polite service at both restaurants and hotels were cited as the primary reasons that drove Americans to tip.

The tipping rate also rises among US travelers to 59 percent when staff go the extra mile.

To educate themselves on the different tipping cultures around the world, the majority of American travelers said they consult travel guides (73 percent), online reviews (48 percent), and online forums (46 percent).

Here’s how countries rank when it comes to how often travelers from each country surveyed said they always tip on vacation:

1. Germans – 69%
2. Americans – 57%
3. Russians – 53%
4. Brazilians – 40%
5. French – 39%
6. Brits – 39%
7. Spanish – 36%
8. Italians – 23%

Meanwhile, CNTraveler offers a country-by-country guide of tipping etiquette for everything from hotel staff to restaurants, guides and drivers at http://cntrvlr.com.

Ramsay and Beckham opening a Vegas restaurant?

David Beckham and Gordon Ramsay

Update: David Beckham’s rep has confirmed to E! News that news of him opening a restaurant with Gordon Ramsay is not true.

Newly retired soccer superstar, David Beckham, revealed his plans to team up with the acerbic chef Gordon Ramsay to open up a sports bar and grill in Las Vegas.

According to The Sun, hotelier and business tycoon Steve Wynn, who owns the Wynn Las Vegas, is wooing the pair to help him open a sports bar and grill along the strip.

And while the city is already saturated with restaurants, including a trio of Ramsay-branded eateries including BurGR at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino, Gordon Ramsay Steak at the Paris Las Vegas hotel, and Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill at Caesars Palace, Wynn is hoping the complementary star power of one of the world’s biggest soccer players combined with Ramsay’s international fame as a chef will help bring in foot traffic, says the Sun.

The timing is likewise ideal, points out the paper, given Beckham’s plans to retire.

GapKids 2013

The world’s best restaurant booked until next spring

El Celler de Can Roca

History is repeating itself at El Celler de Can Roca, which only one month after being declared the best restaurant in the world is booked until April 2014.

The Girona-based eatery about an hour’s drive outside Barcelona has officially become one of the toughest tables to secure in the world and is fully booked for the next 11 months, reports popular food blog Eater.com.

Even before topping the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list, announced last month, the head of reservations Manel de la Rubia told the blog that weekend reservations had to be made nine to 10 months in advance.

It’s yet another sign that the ranking, hosted by “Restaurant magazine”, has become a powerful, influential benchmark among the culinary elite and foodie gourmands rivaling the authority of longstanding gastronomic bible the Michelin guide.

Topping the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list is a major coup for restaurants, filling up dining rooms months in advance and turning chefs into household names.

El Celler de Can Roca, meanwhile, will begin taking reservations for May 2014 and out on June 1.

If you can’t wait that long, the Roca restaurant brand, helmed by brothers Joan, Josep and Jordi, also extends to Roca Moo, a one-Michelin-starred restaurant, and Roca Bar, both at Hotel Omm in Barcelona.

Jiro On sushi

Japan gets another three-Michelin-star restaurant

Jiro On sushi

Michelin inspectors have awarded Hiroshima the city’s first three-star restaurant in the inaugural issue for the region, which now expands the brand’s coverage of Japan’s culinary landscape from three guides to four.

Nakashima restaurant, which serves traditional Japanese dishes using seasonal ingredients, puts the overall tally of triple Michelin-star restaurants in Japan at 37.

The inaugural Hiroshima guide expands Michelin’s coverage of Japan’s food scene, which covers Tokyo, Yokohama, Shonan; Kyoto, Osaka, Kobe, Nara; and Hokkaido.

The latest guide out of Japan also recognized regional Hiroshima cooking styles and specialties for the first time, including anago (saltwater eel), okonomiyaki (savory Japanese pancakes), and dishes made with oysters, says Michelin.

In addition to inducting Nakashima into the exclusive three-star club, inspectors awarded five restaurants with two stars and 24 restaurants with their first star.

The 2013 Hiroshima guide also lists 49 Bib Gourmand restaurants, defined as being excellent value for money. Bib Gourmand eateries offer a complete menu for no more than 3,500 Yen (€27).

Foods represented in the Hiroshima guide include Japanese curry, ramen, udon, yakiniku (grilled meats), yoshoku (Western-influenced Japanese foods), while cuisines range from Thai, Italian, French and Spanish fare.

Michelin guide Hiroshima 2013

Chef Alex Atala

Alex Atala is reshaping the culinary scene in Brazil

Alex Atala

Brazilian chef Alex Atala has been named one of the most influential people of 2013, the only chef to make the Time 100 list this year.

In a write-up for Time magazine, friend and chef colleague René Redzepi describes the 44-year-old as a giant of chefs for his growing influence on Brazil’s culinary landscape, and for his efforts to preserve South America’s food heritage by using indigenous, Amazonian ingredients.

Atala’s Sao Paulo restaurant D.O.M. is currently ranked fourth on the World’s 50 Best Restaurant list.

Take a virtual tour of the chef’s work, and see why Time editors deemed him one of the most important artists of 2013.

Chilled beetroot cream

A dish at D.O.M.

Chilled beetroot cream

Sao Paulo restaurant DOM


A look at one of the hottest tickets in Sao Paulo

Palm heart fettuccini

A dish at D.O.M.

Palm heart fettuccini at D.O.M. Restaurant.

Inside DOM restaurant

D.O.M. Restaurant

Inside D.O.M restaurant

Priprioca milk pudding

Dessert at D.O.M.

Priprioca milk pudding with lime ravioli and ouro banana, a smaller, sweeter type of banana. Priprioca is a local root.

Pirarucu with tucupi

One of Atala’s signature dishes.

One of Atala’s signature dishes at D.O.M. is Pirarucu with tucupi, a type of white fish with the juice of a root.

Roca brothers

The world’s best restaurant is…

TOP 50 Best Restaurants 2013

Spain’s El Celler De Can Roca edged past Denmark’s Noma and Italy’s Osteria Francescana to be named the world’s best restaurant on Monday in a ceremony in London.

It’s been a long time coming for the Girona restaurant in the northeast of Catalona, Spain, having spent the last two years fixed at the No. 2 position on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list and the last seven “waiting in the wings” for its turn at the spotlight.

Steered by Roca brothers —  Joan, the chef or “architect of taste”; Jordi, the pastry chef; and Josep, the sommelier — the restaurant has built a steady and faithful fan base for its “freestyle” cooking, avant-garde techniques, and innovative ideas.

But Monday’s new title is sure to do for El Celler de Can Roca what it did previously for a small restaurant in Copenhagen years ago, and turn it into a household name for even the tepid food-lover.

Since owning the No. 1 spot three years running, Noma chef René Redzepi, for instance, has graced the cover of mainstream news magazine “Time.”

Spanish chef Ferran Adrià of now-closed El Bulli, likewise garnered near mythical status after snapping up the title of world’s best restaurant five times, inspiring a handful of books and big-budget movies.

Meanwhile, if the winners of the Best Restaurants awards are known for pushing the culinary envelope and challenging diners’ concepts of traditional dining, the Roca brothers’ award is richly deserved.

Whether it be playing with essential oils to develop a menu, trying to mimic the texture and bubbles of Cava in an oyster dish, or bottling the memories of childhood in a milky, lemon muffin perfume, the restaurant has never been content to rest on its three Michelin-starred laurels. Restaurant cuisine is described as ‘freestyle cooking’ that hinges on Catalan dishes using cutting-edge techniques.

El Celler de Can Roca

Here’s are the Top 50 restaurants in the world according to a panel of 900 food critics, chefs, restaurateurs and “gastronomes” tapped into the food scene:

1 El Celler de Can Roca – Girona, Spain
2 Noma – Copenhagen, Denmark
3 Osteria Francescana – Modena, Italy
4 Mugaritz – San Sebastián, Spain
5 Eleven Madison Park – New York, USA
6 D.O.M. – São Paulo, Brazil
7 Dinner by Heston Blumenthal – London, UK
8 Arzak – San Sebastián, Spain
9 Steirereck – Vienna, Austria
10 Vendôme – Bergisch Gladbach, Germany
11 Per Se – New York, USA
12 Frantzén/Lindeberg – Stockholm, Sweden
13 The Ledbury – London, UK
14 Astrid y Gastón – Lima, Peru
15 Alinea – Chicago, USA
16 L’Arpège – Paris, France
17 Pujol – Mexico City, Mexico
18 Le Chateaubriand – Paris, France
19 Le Bernardin – New York, USA
20 Narisawa – Tokyo, Japan
21 Attica – Melbourne, Australia – NEW ENTRY
22 Nihonryori RyuGin – Tokyo, Japan
23 L’Astrance – Paris, France
24 L’Atelier Saint-Germain de Joël Robuchon – Paris, France
25 Hof Van Cleve – Kruishoutem, Belgium
26 Quique Dacosta – Dénia, Spain
27 Le Calandre – Rubano, Italy
28 Mirazur – Menton, France
29 Daniel – New York, USA
30 Aqua – Wolfsburg, Germany
31 Biko – Mexico City, Mexico
32 Nahm – Bangkok, Thailand
33 The Fat Duck – Bray, UK
34 Fäviken – Järpen, Sweden
35 Oud Sluis – Sluis, Netherlands
36 Amber – Hong Kong, China
37 Vila Joya – Albufeira, Portugal
38 Restaurant Andre – Singapore – NEW ENTRY
39 8 1/2 Otto E Mezzo Bombana – Hong Kong, China  – NEW ENTRY
40 Combal.Zero – Rivoli, Italy
41 Piazza Duomo – Alba, Italy
42 Schloss Schauenstein – Fürstenau, Switzerland
43 Mr & Mrs Bund – Shanghai, China – NEW ENTRY
44 Asador Etxebarri – Atxondo, Spain
45 Geranium – Copenhagen, Denmark
46 Mani – São Paulo, Brazil
47 The French Laundry – Yountville, USA
48 Quay – Sydney, Australia
49 Septime – Paris, France – NEW ENTRY
50 Central – Lima, Peru – NEW ENTRY


Top 20 hostels in the world for food

fresh fruit smoothies

Influential food blog The Daily Meal has curated a list of the world’s best hostels in an unexpected category: their food offerings.

In their list of top 20 food hostels, standard fare like burgers and chicken nuggets are replaced with regional specialities like maple whiskey mousse in Vermont, organic oatmeal and fruits in San Francisco, and an assortment of Moroccan breads and locally harvested honeys in Marrakech.

The hostel with the best food in the world meanwhile, can apparently be found in Granada, Spain, where food is central to the stay.

When backpackers arrive at the Oasis Hostel, for instance, they’re greeted with a complmentary drink. Breakfast is free, as are tapas tours that take guests on guided tours of the best bars in the city.

Esencia Nativa hostel in El Salvador was given nods for welcoming guests with fresh fruit smoothies and for its restaurant that overlooks the ocean and serves everything from typical Salvadorian breakfasts and freshly caught seafood to homemade pizzas and veggie burgers with homemade hummus.

Here’s the full list of the Top 20 hostels in the world for their food:

1. Oasis Hostel in Granada, Spain

2. Esencia Nativa hostel in El Salvador

3. Villa Salis Hostel in Sète, France

4. La Hamaca Hostel in Honduras

5. Ostinatto Hostel in Buenos Aires

6. Be Hostels in Barcelona

7. Malabar Farm in Ohio

8. Menaggio youth Hostel on Lake Como, Italy

9. Hostel Tevere in Vermont

10. Hostel Pangea in Costa Rica

11. Mosquito Hostel, Krakow, Poland

12. Canadian Backpackers Inn, Toronto

13. Green Tortoise Hostel, San Francisco

14. Villa Saint Exupéry, Nice, France

15. Osa Mariposa in Oaxaca, Mexico

16. Hostel Nari-Nari in Marrakech

17. Betel Box in Singapore

18. Oasis Hostel in Lisbon, Portugal

19. Kex Hostel, Iceland

20. PLUS Berlin Hostel

restaurant noma table

Noma restaurant launches gourmet coffee program

Noma coffee program

Noma has launched a new coffee program with a world champion barista who uses a Japanese drip system to produce a brew that looks like red wine and smells of red berries.

The Copenhagen restaurant announced on its blog that after “months of planning and preparations,” the eatery has started to offer a special coffee menu which uses a special blend of lightly roasted coffee developed by world champion barista Tim Wendelboe of Norway.

The light, fresh and acidic flavors are meant to complement the menu and the “Noma experience.”

Tim Wendelboe sources his beans from small-scale, sustainable, socially responsible coffee farmers in Kenya and Central America. Currently on the menu is a java sourced from Mount Elgon, Kenya.

Coffee is brewed through a V60 system, designed by Japanese company Hario, a manual ceramic dripper which optimizes extraction by filtering the coffee through a brewing cone and into the cup.

Coffee is also served in custom-made glassware, designed by a local Dutch glass blower to enhance the flavor experience.


The 10 most beautifully designed new restaurants


Restaurants spanning Doha, Paris, Berlin and Vietnam have made Architectural Digest’s top 10 list of the most beautifully designed new eateries in the world.


Chosen for “going beyond the ordinary,” the magazine shines the spotlight on recently opened dining destinations such as The Troll Wall in Romsdal, Norway, which does an architecturally admirable job of competing against its stunning backdrop, a location set against the highest vertical rock face in Europe.


At the foot of the towering slate grey Norwegian mountain, a pyramid-like structure of dramatically angled glass walls rises out of the ground – angled so as not to impede any sight lines to the sky.


Other restaurants that got an AD nod include the Astor Grill at St.Regis Doha, a steak and seafood restaurant where guests are greeted with a striking 5-meter tall, curved, silver sculptural art piece that wraps around the entrance wall.


Philippe Starck-designed restaurant Ma Cocotte, located in the biggest and most famous flea market at the edge of Paris the Marché aux Puces Saint-Ouen, was also singled out for its eclectic interior, furnished with vintage and modern finds from the surrounding minefield of antiques.

ma cocotte restaurant

And French chef Michel Roux’s Vietnam outpost La Maison 1888 at the International Danang Sun Peninsula Resort also made the list for its stunning, contemporary take on French Colonial architecture.


Guests take their seats on opulent Louis XVI-style chairs, and dine on classic French dishes in a clean, black and white setting with leafy green plants which never let diners forget they’re in tropical Asia.


Other addresses which made the top 10 list include NoMad and Atera in New York; 5-Cinco, Berlin; Brasserie Zédel in London; Volkshaus Basel in Basel, Switzerland; and French Blue in St. Helena, CA.

NoMad Hotel Bar

Beef Valentine

Zero-calorie restaurant opens in London

steam pop up restaurant

Chef Frederick Forster has joined forces with Miele to launch a pop-up restaurant called “Steam” in London’s Covent Garden, which is totally calorie-neutral.

So, what will be served up? Dishes for the day include beef fillet with beansprout salad, scallop and chorizo brouchette with cucumber and ginger dressing, quail egg cocotte with mushroom and leek fondue and prawn stuffed lemon sole with herb butter sauce.

Beef Valentine

Between courses, guests will take part in stretching classes to aid digestion, sit on vibrating seat pads to increase calorie burn, and engage in full-on dining workouts

And calorie-neutral doesn’t mean skimping on dessert, as the chef is also offering banana cake with pineapple confit and crème Chantilly to end the meal.

The pop-up eatery is being launched to promote German appliance manufacturer Miele’s new steam-cooking appliances, which will be used to cook the meals.

Banana Cake

Steam opens Wednesday, March 13, in Covent Garden with four 90-minute seatings at lunch and dinner. For tickets, email [email protected].

Miele isn’t the only appliance brand to launch innovative dining experiences. Electrolux launched a mobile pop-up restaurant called The Cube, which was set up on rooftops and landmarks around the world, including the arcade of Belgium’s Jubelpark and London’s Royal Festival Hall.

Chef Frederick Forster

Michelin Guide Tokyo 2013

Michelin to make restaurant reservations easier

Michelin Guide Tokyo 2013

Michelin has struck a partnership with the largest online reservations provider in Europe that will allow consumers to book a table at a Michelin-rated eatery instantly.

The partnership with Livebookings.com will first launch in France and Germany, offering instant table reservations at thousands of restaurants across both countries before being rolled out across the rest of Europe.

Currently, Michelin’s restaurant site provides descriptions, ratings, inspector and user-generated reviews but users cannot make reservations directly.

Livebookings services will aim to rival real-time online reservation site OpenTable. Headquartered in San Francisco, OpenTable also operates  in Canada, Germany, Japan, Mexico and the UK, seating 10 million diners a month in 27,000 restaurants.

Gordon Ramsay at Claridges

Gordon Ramsay leaving Claridge’s in London

Gordon Ramsay at Claridges

After a 12-year run, Gordon Ramsay is packing up his knives and leaving the kitchens of luxury London hotel Claridge’s.

According to Caterer and HotelkeeperGordon Ramsay at Claridge’s will close June 30, after Ramsay and the hotel owners failed to agree on a long-term contract.

After a falling out with head chef Mark Sargeant, who helped the fine dining eatery gain a Michelin star, the hotel restaurant subsequently lost its standing following his departure in 2009 and has since been criticized for delivering lackluster dishes at exorbitant prices by restaurant guide Harden’s in the UK.

It’s the latest setback for Ramsay’s restaurant empire, particularly in London, where he’s also vacated the kitchens of hotels such as The Berkeley and The Connaught.

The restaurants are now occupied by Marcus Wareing and Hélène Darroze, respectively, points out Caterer and Hospitality.

Meanwhile, as is the pattern with Ramsay, where one restaurant closes, another one opens, as he plans to open another restaurant in London with BFF and soccer star David Beckham in September.