The Chairman restaurant in Hong Kong has been crowned Best Restaurant in Asia during Asia's 50 Best Restaurants' virtual awards ceremony, sponsored by S.Pellegrino and Acqua Panna, as the gastronomy community united online, showing recognition and support for the industry in what has been a tough year.
In a show of solidarity, William Drew, director of content for Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants, said: “In the last year, the restaurant sector has faced extraordinary challenges. At such a time, we are proud to support the restaurants in their recovery by showcasing the region’s creative talents, celebrating the industry’s pioneers and recognising culinary excellence."
This is the first time a Chinese restaurant has topped the list. Chef Kwok Keung Tung is known for his original ingredient-led cooking and contemporary Cantonese cuisine. His signature dish is steamed flowery crab made with 15-year-old Chinese wine, chicken fat and claim juice, served alongside fragrant chicken oil and flat rice noodles.
Julien Royer's French-inspired restaurant Odette in Singapore fell to number two after two years in the top spot, and chef Zaiyu Hasegawa’s Den restaurant in Tokyo held strong at number three for another year. Gaggan Anand also made an impressive return to the list with his namesake Bangkok restaurant, Gaggan Anand, entering at No.5, securing the Highest New Entry Award, sponsored by Aspire Lifestyles.
Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants also announced the 2021 list of restaurants ranked from 51st to 100th for the first time ever, in a move designed to shine a light on a wider array of establishments across the region.
Asia's 50 Best Special Awards
A number of special awards were also given, recognising those chefs that have made waves in the world of gastronomy over the past 12 months.
Asia's Best Female Chef Award 2021 went to DeAille Tam, executive chef and co-founder of Obscura in Shanghai. Supinya ‘Jay Fai’ Junsuta, owner of famed Thai food stall Raan Jay Fai in Bangkok, was the recipient of the World's 50 Best Icon Award for Asia. Meta in Singapore won the American Express One To Watch Award 2021. The Inedit Damm Chefs' Choice Award, voted on by all chefs on the list, went to Mingoo Kang of Mingles in Seoul, South Korea, and Asia’s Best Pastry Chef 2021 went to Singaporean chef Angela Lai at Taïrroir in Taipei.
Essence of Asia
This year's ninth edition of Asia's 50 Best Restaurants also includes the launch of a complementary list of casual restaurants to run alongside Asia's 50 Best list, Essence of Asia, recognising a collection of local-hero restaurants from across the continent.
See the full list of Asia's 50 Best Restaurants for 2021 below:
1. The Chairman, Hong Kong
2. Odette, Singapore
3. Den, Japan
4. Le Du, Thailand
5. Gaggan Anand, Thailand - New Entry - Aspire Lifestyles Highest New Entry Award 2021
6. Suhring, Thailand
7. Florilege, Japan
8. La Cime, Japan
9. Narisawa, Japan
10. Mingles, South Korea
11. Sorn, Thailand
12. Sazenka, Japan
13. Les Amis, Singapore
14. Burnt Ends, Singapore
15. Mume, Taiwan
16. Vea, Hong Kong - Gin Mare Art of Hospitality Award 2021
17. Neighborhood, Hong Kong
18. Indian Accent, India
19. L’Effervescence, Japan - Beronia Highest Climber Award 2021
20. Nusara, Thailand - New Entry
21. Raw, Taiwan
22. Fu He Hui, China
23. Zen, Singapore
24. Logy, Taiwan - New Entry
25. Belon, Hong Kong
26. JL Studio, Taiwan
27. Ode, Japan
28. Caprice, Hong Kong
29. Ministry of Crab, Sri Lanka
30. La Maison De La Nature Goh, Japan
31. Cloudstreet, Singapore – New Entry
32. Masque, India
33. 8 1/2 Otto e Mezzo Bombana, Hong Kong
34. 7th Door, South Korea - New Entry
35. Nihonryori Ryugin, Japan
36. Born & Bred, South Korea – New Entry
37. Amber, Hong Kong
38. Ta Vie, Hong Kong
39. Anan Saigon, Vietnam - New Entry
40. Labyrinth, Singapore - New Entry and Winner of Flor de Cana Sustainable Restaurant Award 2021
41. Euphoria, Singapore – New Entry
42. Jaan by Kirk Westaway, Singapore
43. Hansikganggan, South Korea
44. Mono, Hong Kong – New Entry
45. Shoun RyuGin, Taiwan
46. Gaa, Thailand
47. Lung King Heen, Hong Kong
48. Seventh Son, Hong Kong
49. Toyo Eatery, Philippines
50. Wing Lei Palace, Macau