London party

Top 50 in the world follow Antwerp with London, not Moscow

The Oscars of the culinary scene, World’s 50 Best Restaurants, are not immune to international conflicts. After a very long break, 2021 marked the successful return of live award shows held in the hidden culinary gem of Antwerp. The Belgian food scene has proven to be much more than fries with local favourite, The Jane, gracing the list at number sixty-six. Over the weekend East Flanders neighbor Hof Van Clef celebrated his 36th place while Willem Hiele’s Koksijde previously held 77th place.

After a justified break, the victorious return of in-person ceremonies included waves of dinners, parties and celebrations. With honorees including Dominique Crenn receiving an Icon Award, world-renowned noma as a top restaurant pick, and champions of change hailing the work to heal America’s prison system. As a direct result of the current conflict, and in a not entirely surprising twist, the much-vaunted ceremony has been moved. the world’s top 50 have announced that their 2022 presentation ceremony which was to have taken place in Moscow will now be held in London.

Noma founder René Redzepi and his team were jubilant at the Antwerp celebrations and after claiming a number one spot. Known for creating the genre of New Nordic Cuisine, they introduced a seasonal dining model to the island of Refshalevej in Copenhagen. Expect fishing, foraging and fermentation on every plate from tail to nose, including the occasional reindeer phallus when in season.

Atelier Crenn has graced the Cow Hollow neighborhood of San Francisco with its inimitable culinary approach to “poetic cuisine” where a traditional menu is replaced by a poem written by a chef. With three Michelin stars, she’s clearly onto something special. As one of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants as of 2019, its meals are designed to be multi-course and intimate using the chef’s own sustainable Sonoma products. Its Breton-inspired sister restaurant, Petit Crenn, only compliments the farm-to-table aesthetic.

The best female chef in the world, Pía León de Kjolle, has left an indelible mark on the Latin American culinary landscape and the world at large. While her Peruvian restaurants celebrated the abundance of local grains and produce, she is a champion of biodiversity. His destination restaurant, Mil, is located in Cusco in the Andes. The common thread between its establishments is a distinct nod to Peruvian geography which contains elevations ranging from the sea to the mountains to the Amazon.

American chef, Kurt Evans of Philadelphia, has been fighting mass incarceration using food since 2018 with a series of dinner parties aptly dubbed “End Mass Incarceration.” The goal was to break bread with policy makers and the community as well as those incarcerated in hopes of finding common ground. With the money raised donated to various charities such as Books Through Bars, Evans moved on to New York-based Drive Change. Evans, who acted as the culinary director of the nonprofit that gives formerly incarcerated youth culinary skills and training, was at a loss when the program was halted during the pandemic. He returned to Philadelphia and with Muhammad Abdul-Hadi co-founded Down North Pizza. Their mission is clear: to employ formerly incarcerated people and give them the practical skills to launch a culinary career. In July 2020, Evans’ latest project called Everybody Eats Philly, became a collaboration with the help of a team of black chefs to fight food insecurity and bring community back to the city he loves.