The inaugural awards ceremony to celebrate “Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants,” sponsored by S. Pellegrino & Acqua Panna, and organized by William Reed Business Media, will be held on Feb. 25 at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore.
“Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants, part of The World’s 50 Best Restaurants” program will recognize the region’s growing culinary diversity and quality, in line with global culinary trends.
The “World’s 50 Best Restaurants” represents an annual review and convergence of opinion from restaurant industry experts. It is recognized globally as the most trusted arbiter and authority on global dining. Drawing on the success of “The World’s 50 Best Restaurants,” “Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants” will provide a credible and trusted list that is dedicated to the restaurant industry in Asia and voted for by peers and luminaries from the culinary profession.
William Drew, William Reed Business Media, said of the new list: “Following the success of “The World’s 50 Best Restaurants,” we are excited to announce the date of the first ever awards ceremony for “Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants” champions the significant and continued growth of the industry in Asia, and provides the restaurants with international peer reviews, recommendation and profile. “Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants” will celebrate the gastronomic delights of Asia. We have no doubt that the list will be a must-have accessory for the increasing number of loyal followers to The World’s 50 Best Restaurants.”
Fabio degli Esposti, International Business Unit Director – Italian Brands of San
Pellegrino Nestlé Waters, said: “The fine dining waters that bring the taste of Italian lifestyle to the world’s best tables, are happy to support the first edition of ‘Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants.’ We consider Asia’s culinary scene very important and ready to capture the food enthusiasts’ attention at an international level, therefore we are proud to help ‘The World’s 50 Best’ to turn the spotlight on Asia.”
George Tanasijevich, president and CEO of Marina Bay Sands, said: “We are honored that Marina Bay Sands has been chosen as the venue for the inaugural ‘Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards’ in February 2013. Asia’s appetite for good food is unmatched and we’re pleased to play our part in the launch event.”
How Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants List is compiled:
‘Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants’ list is created from ‘The World’s 50 Best Restaurants’ Academy, an influential group of over 900 international leaders in the restaurant industry, each selected for their expert opinion of the international restaurant scene.
The Academy comprises 26 separate regions around the world. Each region has its own panel of 36 members including a chairperson to head it up. The panel is made up of food critics, chefs, restaurateurs and highly regarded ‘foodies,’ each of whom has seven votes. Of the seven votes, at least three must be used to recognize restaurants outside of the voters’ region. At least 10 panelists from each region change each year. None of the employees of any of the sponsors associated with the awards, including the main sponsor, votes or has any influence over the results.
Votes for restaurants in the following countries in Asia, cast during the voting period for “The World’s 50 Best Restaurants,” will result in the list of “Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants”: Bangladesh, Myanmar, Brunei, Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Laos, Macao, Malaysia, Maldives, Micronesia, Nauru, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Timor-Leste, and Vietnam.
Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants Individual Awards Categories:
• Lifetime Achievement Award
• Best Female Chef Award
• Chefs’ Choice Award
• Best Pastry Chef
• Individual country awards
• The Best Restaurant in Asia
• One to Watch
Chef’s Favorites: As part of the Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants program, the chefs’ from the stellar restaurants who have made it onto the list itself will recommend their personal favorite eateries. From fine dining establishments to hawker stalls, the list will be published online alongside “Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants” list following the awards ceremony on Feb. 25, 2013.
The celebrated chefs’ choices will be supplemented by recommendations from
those who eat out the most, namely select members of the “Asia’s 50 Best
Restaurants” voting academy.
Asia’s Best Dinner: Hosted by the organizers of “Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants,” Asia’s Best Dinner will take place on Feb. 24, 2013 and will be prepared by four guest chefs based in Asia who appear in “The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list 2012. The dinner will feature a paired degustation menu at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Singapore for an exclusive audience of 120 people.
Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants Professional Workshops: On Feb. 24 and 25, 2013 at the At-Sunrice GlobalChef Academy, celebrated chefs will demonstrate their culinary expertise at two, half-day session workshops. Workshop guests will be treated to gastronomic sampling plates as well as in depth discussion sessions on Asian cuisine, heritage, culture, aspiration and identity. Chefs will share insider knowledge on how to blend traditional and modern cuisine, and will discuss the reinvention of street food for a contemporary kitchen and modern palate.
Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants Results: Following the awards ceremony on Feb. 25, 2013, the results of the awards will be published live at http://worlds50best.asia/
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Shangri-La Bangkok recently held a “Meet the Chef” media dinner to present the new chef de cuisine, Omar Ugoletti, of its award-winning Italian restaurant, Angelini.
Chef Omar grew up in his father’s pizzeria in Marche, Central Italy; and as a child, the kitchen was his playground. The young Omar spent his weekends there doing a part-time job. With his father teaching him first how to make pizza, which later on inspired him to pursue further, the art and craft of cooking.
Upon reaching the right age, he enrolled in the Professional Hotel Institute in Panzini Senigalia, a school for hotel service and the restaurant industry, and continued to help during the weekends at his father’s pizzeria. After graduation, he decided to travel to London to see more of the world, still not knowing then what he wanted to do with his life.
It was there that he met an Italian chef, Franco Taruscio, who persuaded the young Omar to work at Bertarelli Restaurant, which is one of the most renowned restaurants in central London. Chef Omar’s formative years at Bertarelli were an eye-opening experience for him, and he was able to hone his culinary skills, as he had the opportunity to work with another 20 chefs and to prepare perfect dishes for everyone. He then decided that being a chef was the only job for him, and that he had to become a top chef one day.
Chef Omar believes that Italian food should be authentic and traditional; therefore, he uses only top quality and seasonal ingredients for his dishes. However, he still likes to bring some “fun” to his creations. Diners can see him using many herbs like thyme, marjoram, chives and tarragon, mostly in the summer, but he never overdoes it, as he does not want to hide the true taste of each ingredient. To continue with the “fun,” Chef Omar also likes to use flowers to decorate the plate. The orchid and the borage are his favorite flowers and they help to give a lively presentation to his dishes.
He never overcooks food and prefers to keep the original taste and flavor. There are many methods that he likes to use, for example, vacuuming, low temperature and slow cooking in order that the food has a good texture.
Chef Omar is great at cooking fish dishes, and his most recent restaurant experience in Italy was at a seafood restaurant. He also had a strong collaboration with the Michelin two-star Uliassi Restaurant and the Michelin two-star La Madonnina del Pescatore. For six years, he was the chef at Il Saraghino, the Michelin one-star restaurant. The restaurant also belongs to Jeunes Restaurateurs d’Europe.
After spending 13 years in Europe, Chef Omar moved to Hong Kong, where he worked with Umberto Bombana 8 at the Michelin three-star Mezzo Bombana Restaurant. And then the Ritz Carlton Beijing, prior to moving to Thailand and joined Shangri-La Hotel, Bangkok at the end of September.
Says Chef Omar, “Shangri-La Hotel, Bangkok has a reputation as a first-class luxury riverside hotel that provides unique Shangri-La hospitality and memorable guest experiences. I feel privileged to be a part of the Shangri-La family in Bangkok. I hope my dynamic and inspirational experience and my passion for cooking will bring Angelini to the next level of Italian dining.”