Personal reflections on World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2019.
OTM was “tuned in” to the live Video Stream. Not the same as being in the Hall in Singapore, but a whole lot less expensive and exhausting. It seemed that Everyone was betting that NOMA2 would top the list, but Rene Redzepi will have to wait. Eligible to participate in the 2019 awards due to a controversial change in the rules, Rene had to be satisfied with 2nd place. Rene might also check his rear vision for Geranium, Rising fast in Copenhagen. Their 5th Place finish was greeted by the evening's loudest cheers,- or maybe their travel bill was the highest.
In the meantime a French Restaurant, Mirazur, helmed by an Italian-Argentine Chef, Mauro Colagreco, won the day and also has it’s place for the future in the new category, Best of the Best. Gaggan crept up a step from 5 to 4. Is the rumor still out there that the Chef will open something new? Central & Maido, headed by Peruvian Superstars Virgilio Martinez & Micha Tsumura at 6 and 10 validate Lima Peru’s claim the dining scene there is World Class. We already knew. Asador Etxebarri at 3. Mugaritz at 7 and Highest Climber Azurmendi at 14 would allow Spain’s Basque Country to claim an Award for Propinquity (closeness) if there was one.
We first met Moscow’s White Rabbit in London many years ago, and are quite astonished to find them at the dizzy rank of 13. They were joined by another Moscow spot, Twins Garden at 19. Disfrutar, 2017’s One to Watch and 2018 Highest New continues to rise, and broke into Top 10. Our Great Lunch and Great Interview last year in Barcelona lead us to forecast this as a future Top 5 Challenger. Le Calandre near Padova, Le Bernadin in NYC and Blue Hill at Stone Barns maintain their positions in the 30s, a tribute to their consistency.
5 Restaurants with Women Chefs were recognized in the Top 50, Dominque Crenn among them after opining that she had been snubbed in previous awards except Best Female. But where is Carme Ruscalleda, celebrating 30 years at Spain’s San Pau. We celebrated with them last year – and they have not missed a step! Clare Smyth, 2018’s Best Female might have a similar compliant. Britain might possibly further complain that Clove Club and Lyle’s are not the only award-worthy places. Worse treatment went to London’s The Ledbury which dropped to the 51+ Tier.
It was a good year for France, not only # 1; also Chef’s Choice to Alain Passard to go with #8, and 2 other Parisians at 16 and 25. In the meantime Berlin’s Tim Raue and his Wife continue a slow but steady climb, with innovative Asian-inspired cuisine at a location just around the corner from legendary Checkpoint Charlie. Mexico’s Enrique Olivera won an usual combination, #12 for Mexico City’s Pujol (best in Mexico), #23 for NYC’s Cosme (best in USA) and Best Female (for Cosme) Chef Daniela Solo-Innes. So many stories! But the top story surely must go to Jose Andres, 1st recipient of the New Amex Icon Award; Is a Nobel Peace Prize next for this Dynamo Chef?
We’re sure that you have your own memories and opinions, but you’ll respect ours. Or email us if you have a serious disagreement – and we’ll add it here.
Greatt New Tastes from Nonino
What a Wonderful Surprise to find out that recently reopened Dish Osteria on Pittsburgh’s Southside, is a local source for Amaro Nonino. https://www.dishosteria.com/ Our Great Friends at Nonino Distillatori sent us a bottle which we long ago consumed, so we now have a local source for this “Charming Sweet & Bitter Mix (as described by the Noninos). And another-treat just introduced is Aperitivo Nonino Botanical Drink, based on UE Grape Distillate Frangolino Monovitigno. What will they think of next? http://www.grappanonino.it/en.
Happy Birthday Superior Motors & Chef Kevin Sousa. July 30 is the Day, Superior Motors in Braddock is the place
And Chef Kevin wants you to know that you're invited.. They're planning to have a very down to earth celebration that will include some of Chef Kevin Sousa's signature street food dishes from years past, Millie’s Homemade Ice Cream setting up an Ice Cream Float bar (spiked & spirit free), the ‘Ga’hed Cuz’ (Pittsburghese for “Go ahead, cousin”) speakeasy bar, a cigar lounge, live music from DJ Selecta, Beauty Slap, Princess Nostalgia, and Hill Jordan & Slide Worldwide, plus the second annual August Fetterman water balloon toss. Word i that tickets are going fast. Get yours at https://www.exploretock.com/superiormotors/event/65782/anniversary-party-2.
In Memoriam Jean=Louis Paladin
Special Awards at the 2019 Fancy Food Show
Congratulations to the following who were recognized with Awaeds by the Specialty Food Association. Interesingly most of them have been Guests of our Program over the years, several of them more than once. We are pleased to add our Congratulations on the will deserved Honors..
Receiving Lifetime Achievement Awards were Benny Curl of Byrd Cookie Co., who spurred distribution of Byrd Cookies from Harrods to Hong Kong and beyond; https://www.byrdcookiecompany.com/; Ariane Daguin of D’Artagnan, who grew a meat and game business by organizing small farmers and promoting conscientiously raised meat, https://www.dartagnan.com/’ and Bob Moore of Bob’s Red Mill, who founded America’s whole grain movement, https://www.bobsredmill.com/. Inducted into the SFA’s Hall of Fame were Robert and Margaret Garcia of RW Garcia Co., Inc, https://rwgarcia.com/, Allison Hooper and Bob Reese of Vermont Creamery, https://www.vermontcreamery.com/, Shawn McBride of Foah International LLC, https://www.fona.com/, Ahmed Rahim and Reem Hassani of Numi Organic Tea, http://nomatea.com/, and Stewart Reich of Hanson Faso Sales & Marketing, http://www.hansonfaso.com/.
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Exciting News from Michter's
Our Great Good Friends from Michter’s just sent us exciting news. In July, Louisville based Michter’s Distillery will begin shipping its 2019 release of 10 Year Single Barrel Rye. Because Michter’s continues to experience whiskey shortages, it is anticipated that this will be the only bottling of the distiller’s 10 Year Single Barrel Kentucky Straight Rye this year. This July release will mark the first release of whiskey by recently named Master Distiller Dan McKee. “In my years at Michter’s, I’ve seen how incredibly focused our previous Master Distillers Pam Heilmann and Willie Pratt have been on waiting to release whiskey till it was just right,” said McKee. “Working with our Master of Maturation Andrea Wilson, I will continue that tradition of only releasing whiskey that makes us extremely proud.” Michter’s President Joseph J. Magliocco commented, “Before he moved up to the position of Master Distiller, Dan did a fantastic job in the role of Distiller at Michter’s and was a key member of our tasting panel. Having worked with Dan for some time now, I know that our distillery is in great hands.” The 2019 release of this 10 Year Single Barrel Kentucky Straight Rye exemplifies the Michter’s style of Kentucky rye. “Of course, the mashbills for our rye whiskeys include the distinctive rye grain by definition, but they also include a good amount of corn and malted barley resulting in a rich rye with layers of delicious flavor that complement the spice notes in the whiskey,” said Andrea Wilson. For more, https://michters.com/.
Rancho Gordo's Steve Sando Responds to Trump Tariffs
Effective immediately, in response to threatened tariffs on Mexican imports and continual assault on the immigration and refugee problem along our southern border, Rancho Gordo, in conjunction with our Mexican partners Xoxoc, is adding a 5% charge to all of our imports from Mexico and 100% of this money will be donated to No More Deaths, a humanitarian group based in Arizona that provides water, medical assistance, along with search and rescue and legal service to immigrants. More details on their blog http://www.ranchogordoblog.com/2019/06/announcement-our-response-to-trumps-proposed-tariff-on-mexican-imports.html
Fancy Food Show NYC Javitz Center June 23-25
.If you want to know about the Best and Latest in Gourmet Food and Drink, this is your One-Stop place to be. Organized by the Specialty Food Association, this Trade Event fills every corner of the Giant Convention Center . For more information go to http://www.specialtyfood.com, and pack your most comfortable Shoes.