The time has once again arrived for the new edition of The World’s 50 Best Restaurants to be released. Last year’s ceremony in Antwerp was postponed until October due to the pandemic, but this year we are back on track with a summer release. The extended 51-100 list was published earlier this week, and the annual top 50 restaurant ranking, sponsored by San Pellegrino, will be released on Monday, July 18th, 2022. This year, the awards will take place in London, at the Old Billingsgate market, and the event will also be live-streamed virtually for those who can’t physically be present. As is our annual tradition, we have made some predictions about this year’s awards. Keep reading to see who we think will be on the 2022 World’s 50 Best Restaurants list.
Of course, as official TasteHunters for the World’s 50 Best Restaurants, we will be present at the ceremony – so follow us on Instagram (@carnivorr and @andershusa) for a behind-the-scenes look at the festivities. If you want to hear our live updates with all the last-minute rumors, industry secrets, and insights, be sure to join The Hungries! Like last year, we will be having a virtual watch party together and discussing all things 50 Best on the forum. #TheHungriesKnowFirst
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The 50 Best Voters
The World’s 50 voters are anonymous, they are 50% male and 50% female, and at least 25% of the voters are rotated every year in order to keep the list fresh. There are over 1,000 industry experts who vote on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list every year – they are chefs and restaurateurs, food writers, and well-traveled gourmets. For more information on how the voting works, click here. A reminder: we are NOT voters and we have no insight into which restaurants will top this year’s highly anticipated list. We are just making our best guesses! To read more about our role as 50 Best TasteHunters, click here.
The Best of the Best
In 2019, The World’s 50 Best organization implemented a new rule to change up the list and bring in more diversity. Restaurants who have topped the 50 Best list are no longer eligible to win again. Instead, these winners move into the “Best of the Best” list, a hall of fame for all of the previous number one restaurants. Restaurants in this category include Noma, Mirazur, Osteria Francescana, Eleven Madison Park, The French Laundry, El Celler de Can Roca, and The Fat Duck. Which restaurant will join the “Best of the Best” this year?
As we are based in Copenhagen, and travel most frequently around Denmark, Norway, and Sweden, our guesses for this year’s list are Scandinavian-focused. However, we’ve finally begun to travel a bit more outside our region after the lockdowns were lifted. In the past year, we have traveled to Belgium, Greece, the United States, Iceland, Peru, and Argentina. As always when we travel, we try to visit all the best restaurants in these destinations, so our thoughts and opinions are primarily based on these recent trips. Keep reading to see our 2022 World’s 50 Best Restaurants predictions.
Predictions: The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2022
At last year’s awards, Noma rightfully reclaimed the title of the World’s Best Restaurant 2021. Restaurant Geranium jumped from fifth to second place, so we are crossing our fingers that Copenhagen will top the list once again in 2022. In March of this year, Geranium scrapped all of their signature dishes and started anew with a completely meat-free menu. Chef Rasmus Kofoed has never served much meat at his restaurant (preferring to showcase the best of Scandinavian seafood and local vegetables), so the taste and the style of the food is still very recognizable. Rasmus Kofoed is one of the most creative and talented chefs in the world; having already won gold, silver, and bronze in the Bocuse D’Or and three Michelin stars, he certainly deserves to add the title of “World’s Best Restaurant” to his trophy shelf as well.
Our favorite restaurant in the world, Frantzén, jumped from no. 21 in 2019 to no. 6 last year. We think that this year the iconic Stockholm restaurant will leapfrog right into the top three. Bjorn Frantzén and his team make some of the tastiest food we’ve ever had, in one of the most luxuriously relaxing restaurant settings ever. This spring, we visited Lima, Peru for the first time, and visited one of our bucket list restaurants: Central. (YouTube video coming soon!) This was an out-of-this-world food experience that instantly soared into the top meals of our life. We have no doubt that Virgilio Martinez and Pía León’s restaurant will remain in the top five – and hopefully even move into the top three!
Impossible-to-book restaurant Alchemist opened just shortly after the 2019 list came out, and therefore was not included until 2021, when they entered the list at no. 58. This year they are noticeably absent from the 51-100 list, so there’s no doubt in our mind that they’ve slingshotted into the top 50 – and we think they will likely place in the upper half. (Maybe they will even jump right into the top ten?) Alchemist is the most mind-blowing dining experience we’ve had, with absurdly delicious and thought-provoking dishes from chef Rasmus Munk.
We’d love to see Lido 84 (last year’s Highest Climber Award) jump from no. 15 into the top ten. This gem of a restaurant in Italy is one of our all-time favorite dining destinations, located right on the spectacular Lake Garda. Giancarlo Camanini is a world-class restaurant host, and his brother Riccardo is a master in the kitchen.
The rest of the players in the top ten aren’t likely to shift much – once you’re in the top, it’s pretty hard to drop. Asador Extebarri has been highly ranked for many years (with good reason), and the same goes for Disfrutar, Maido, and Pujol. These restaurants are the pillars of the 50 Best list and it’s only a matter of time before they hit the number one spot and move onto the Best of the Best list. However, top contenders in Asia might suffer this year. We noticed a lot of restaurants in Asia drop from the top 50 to the 51-100 list, and our guess is that strict lockdowns could be to blame. Will Odette, The Chairman, and Den take a dip?
Two of our favorite restaurants in the United States (SingleThread and Atomix) jumped into the top 50 last year, at no. 37 and no. 43, respectively. We are crossing our fingers that they will continue to climb and get recognition for the incredible menus they are serving. These are, without a doubt, two of the top restaurants in America. Another crowd favorite on the list is DiverXO in Madrid, which jumped from no. 75 in 2019 to no. 20 in 2021. This extremely popular restaurant from chef Dabiz Muñoz has won the hearts of many diners and voters alike. We haven’t been ourselves yet, but we can’t wait to visit in October!
A restaurant close to our hearts is Maaemo, the pride and joy of Norway. In 2019 it was ranked no. 55, and last year Chef Esben Holmboe Bang’s breathtaking new venue got their three stars back, and climbed into the top 50 once again. Maaemo was no. 47 in 2021 and we hope to see them climb even higher this year – the food is better than ever.
50 and Beyond…
As is tradition, The World’s 50 Best Restaurants released the 51-100 list a couple weeks ahead of the awards ceremony. This extended list gives us some clues about which restaurants could have jumped into the top fifty this year. Core by Clare Smyth (ranked no. 64 in 2021), The Jane (ranked no. 66 in 2021), and Ikoyi (ranked no. 87 in 2021) are all noticeably missing from the bottom half of the 50 Best list. We would not be surprised if these restaurants soared into the top fifty restaurants – and since these culinary addresses are missing from the 51-100 list, it’s a good guess to assume that they did. The Jane, in particular, we think is a pretty safe bet, as many voters in Antwerp for last year’s awards paid this spectacular restaurant a visit. Fingers crossed for Nick Bril and his team!
One of our favorite restaurants in Denmark is Kadeau – we would have loved to see chef Nicolai Nørregaard and his Bornholm boys climb from no. 105 (in 2019) into the top 100. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen this year. In our opinion, Alouette in Copenhagen also deserves recognition from the 50 Best voters. It’s not on the list yet, but we hope it will be soon – it’s one of our all-time top dining experiences.
Will Los Angeles ever get the culinary credit it deserves? Sadly, our favorite tasting menu restaurant in L.A., Somni, closed during the pandemic, but we hope chef Aitor Zabala will open his new concept soon. Chef Jordan Kahn’s culinary playground would be our first guess if any L.A. restaurants are to make it to the list, but the spaceship restaurant Vespertine has been closed temporarily as well. The upcoming opening of Habitué from chefs Marcus Jernmark and Robert Sandberg (formerly of Frantzén) could also help put Los Angeles in the spotlight in the years to come.
Newcomer Delta in Athens is another restaurant to be on the lookout for. Helmed by chefs Thanos Feskos (formerly of Geranium) and George Papazacharias (formerly of Maaemo, L’Air du Temps, and Under), this restaurant will be the one to put Greece on the map as a culinary destination. Delta hasn’t made it to the 51-100 list yet, but, with the amount of talent in that kitchen, we’re sure it’s just a matter of time.
Who do you think will be in the top five this year? Let us know in a comment below.