Magazine for jet-setting crowd ranks top restaurants in the world


A restaurant guide for the jet setting "wealthy elite" has crowned chef Grant Achatz's Chicago restaurant Alinea as the top restaurant in the world.

The recently launched issue of US-based Elite Traveler's World's Top Restaurants magazine gave Alinea the top nod, calling it the best restaurant in the world for its "hypermodern, emotional approach to dining."

British chef Heston Blumenthal's The Fat Duck, in Bray came in second for "pushing the boundaries of British gastronomy" and providing a dining experience that excites the senses and reinvents traditional British classics.

And Thomas Keller's New York restaurant Per Se made third place for offering "understated luxury," while his flagship eatery The French Laundry in Yountville, California, was ranked 14th.

Keller is the only chef to have two restaurants in the list.

Elite Traveler's selection provides an interesting contrast to other international rankings like Restaurant magazine's World's 50 Best Restaurants list. While chef René Redzepi's Copenhagen eatery Noma, for instance, has topped that ranking for two years running, it's conspicuously absent from Elite Traveler.

In addition to critics from the magazine, restaurants were also chosen by magazine readers, a market described as the wealthy, jet-setting crowd.

Rounding out the top five restaurants in Elite Traveler's list are Pierre Gagnaire in Paris and Daniel Boulud's Daniel in New York.

While the list is heavy on US restaurants -- seven of the 20 are American -- other international restaurants to make the top 20 include El Celler de Can Roca in Girona, Spain; Louis XV Alain Ducasse of Monaco; Mugaritz in Errenteria, Spain; Al Sorriso in the Piedmont area of Italy; The Ledbury in London, Restaurant Gordon Ramsay also in London, and La Colombe, of Cape Town, South Africa.

Meanwhile, El Celler de Can Roca was ranked No. 2 and Mugaritz ranked No. 3 in the World's 50 Best Restaurants list.

To download the full issue, visit