Julien Royer’s modern fine-dining French restaurant Odette remains Singapore’s culinary darling, according to The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2019.
Odette, which took the No.1 spot in this year’s Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants list by knocking Bangkok’s Gaggan off the top, was expected to do well in this year’s The World’s 50 Best Restaurants rankings. But even chef-owner Julien Royer probably didn’t expect that his restaurant – first established in 2015 after he left JAAN to strike it out on his own – would climb ten spots from No.28 last year to clinch 18th position in one of the most anticipated and lauded culinary lists in the world.
Despite home-ground advantage with Singapore hosting this year’s awards ceremony at Marina Bay Sands, Odette remains the only Singapore entry on that list, as it was in 2018. Before Odette’s ascension to the list, Singapore was represented by Restaurant André, which landed the No.32 spot back in 2016 and No.46 in the year before that. But when chef-owner André Chiang closed his eponymous establishment in 2018 after some eight years in the trade, Singapore’s chances of having more than one entry in The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2019 deflated like a soufflé left out too long. Singapore’s next best hope would have been Burnt Ends, but it could only manage No.59 this year.
In a list often accused of being too Euro-centric, Asia managed to retain its foothold on this list by taking seven spots in the top 50, as it did back in both the 2018 and 2017 lists. Bangkok’s Gaggan – which is slated to close 2020 – continues to be Asia’s best restaurant, landing at No.4 this year. However, Tokyo’s contemporary kaiseki restaurant Nihonryori Ryugin and Bangkok’s upscale Thai eatery Nahm were both displaced off the top 50 this year; in their place are totally new entries Restaurant Sühring from Bangkok and Hong Kong’s The Chairman.
This year’s The World’s 50 Best Restaurants also saw somewhat of a shake-up; the organisers controversially decided to move previous No.1 winners into a separate “Best of the Best” list, meaning they are no longer eligible to compete in the main rankings. Without the likes of The French Laundry, El Celler de Can Roca, Osteria Francesca and Eleven Madison Park has opened up opportunities for the rest of the pack; this year the coveted top spot went to Mirazur from Menton, France, which had consistently climbed up in the top ten over the past few years (it was No.3 last year and No.4 in 2017). No. 2 went to the reinvented Noma.
“This year we are thrilled to see Mirazur claim the No.1 spot after rising through the ranks since making its debut on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list at No.35 in 2009: it’s been brilliant to witness its progress. This has been a wonderful, progressive year for the list as a whole, with so many new entries from all corners of the globe,” declared William Drew, Director of Content for The World’s 50 Best Restaurants.
“We are equally delighted to welcome the seven previous No.1 restaurants into the newly created Best of the Best category.”
You can find the full rankings in the graphic below.
As for Odette – it’s already not easy to garner a reservation there these days thanks to its recent stellar performance in Asia’s 50 Best 2019, as well as continuing its two Michelin star streak earlier this year. With this new announcement, what’s difficult is going to be nigh impossible.