Japanese restaurants rocket to top of best in world list

News On Japan

December 1, 2019

Two Japanese restaurants have shot to the top of the La Liste ranking of best places to eat in the world, with a third one getting the second highest mark from the authoritative “guide of guides”.

Yosuke Suga’s tiny Tokyo restaurant Sugalabo, which has only 20 tables, does not have a Michelin star but shares the top spot on the French-based list alongside the reigning leaders, Guy Savoy in Paris and New York’s Le Bernardin under Eric Ripert.

The famously innovative Ryugin restaurant in the Japanese capital run by chef Seiji Yamamoto jumped 30 places to also reach the shared number one spot.

A delighted Yamamoto, known as the “king of kaiseki” — the traditional multi-course Japanese meal — told AFP that he now knows what the mysterious invitation he received to come to Paris next month was for.

“I’m honored. When I opened my own restaurant I was 33 and was told I was young and green. It’s been 16 years since then and I now feel the responsibility as a chef carrying on (the tradition) of Japanese cuisine.”

Kyoto’s Kitcho Arashiyama was one of seven restaurants including Alain Ducasse’s Monaco base that split second place.

The French celebrity chef’s Paris table at the Plaza Athenee hotel was ranked fourth by the classification, which aggregates reviews from guides, newspapers and websites including TripAdvisor.

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