Singapore

Odette at National Gallery is Asia's best restaurant again

French fine-dining restaurant Odette at the National Gallery Singapore retains its No. 1 position on this year's Asia's 50 Best Restaurants list. This makes it the best restaurant in Asia and Singapore for the second year in a row.

Another Singapore establishment - modern Australian barbecue restaurant Burnt Ends in Teck Lim Road (previously No. 10) - climbs five spots to No. 5.

The other three in the top five are Tokyo's Den - retaining third place - and Hong Kong's Belon at No. 4 (previously No. 15) as well as The Chairman at No. 2 (previously No. 11).

The annual list was livestreamed online yesterday. The on-site event, originally meant to be held in Japan's Saga prefecture, was cancelled last month amid the coronavirus outbreak.

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Odette's chef-owner Julien Royer, 37, and his team watched the ceremony together at the restaurant, he told The Straits Times. He said it helped them to temporarily forget their worries of the past few weeks.

He said: "It is a challenging time for us all in the food and beverage industry. It is difficult to celebrate at the moment, but we take this as a sign of positivity and optimism for us. We have to find solutions and hope for a better future."

The restaurant has been hit by a spate of cancellations in the last few days, said Royer, as about 30 per cent of its diners are tourists who have cancelled their trips to Singapore.

He was concerned over the supply of ingredients as it relies heavily on imported produce.

Overall, it was a strong showing from restaurants here.

Restaurant Zen - by Swedish chef Bjorn Frantzen, who runs the three-Michelin-starred Frantzen in Stockholm - debuted on the list at No. 28.

The restaurant in Bukit Pasoh Road was also awarded two Michelin stars in its debut on last year's Michelin Guide.

French restaurant Les Amis at Shaw Centre (previously No. 33) shot to No. 11 and also won the Gin Mare Art of Hospitality award.

British restaurant Jaan by Kirk Westaway (previously No. 32) at Swissotel The Stamford jumped 11 spots to No. 21, while modern European restaurant Corner House (previously No. 49) at the Singapore Botanic Gardens rose seven spots to No. 42.

Fine-dining restaurant Nouri, No. 39 last year, slipped 11 spots to No. 50, while Japanese restaurant Waku Ghin at Marina Bay Sands - No. 40 last year - was not on the list. The restaurant has been closed since last June for renovations.

The upcoming Asia's 50 Best Bars ceremony takes place on May 14, also as an online ceremony; while the World's 50 Best 2020 list will be announced in Antwerp, Belgium, on June 2.

Food & Drink