Posts

The World’s Best Restaurants 2018 have recently been announced and once again Europe features high up in the list and in fact  all the Top 3 Restaurants 2018 are European !!!!

(Skip to the bottom for the FULL list of the World’s Best Restaurants 2018 or read on to find out all the World’s TOP 3 Restaurants over the years)

worlds best 50

The Worlds Best Restaurants List has been around for a quite a few years! and is organised and compiled by Restaurant magazine and sponsored by S Pellegrino & Acqua Panna.

The World’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards and List,  now in its 16th year,  is an annual recollection of the opinions and experiences of over 900 international restaurant industry experts and is attended by the world’s finest chefs, international media and the world’s most influential restaurateurs.

After 13 years of being presented in London, the World’s 50 Best Restaurants List Ceremony went on tour! First to New York, then to Melbourne and this year to Bilbao, Spain. Where in the World will the World’s 50 Best Restaurants be presented from in 2019????? We’ll let you know when we find out …

In the meantime here’s a look back over the last few years at all  the World’s TOP 3 Restaurants  from 2002 -> 2018:

World's Number ONE Restaurant 2018 + 2016

World’s Number ONE Restaurant 2018 + 2016

2018

  1. Osteria Francescana (Italy)
  2. El Celler De Can Roca (Spain)
  3. Mirazur (France)

 

2017

  1. Eleven Madison Park (USA)
  2. Osteria Francescana (Italy)
  3. El Celler De Can Roca (Spain)

 

2016

  1. Osteria Francescana (Italy)
  2. El Celler De Can Roca (Spain)
  3. Eleven Madison Park (USA)

 

2015

  1. El Celler De Can Roca (Spain)
  2. Osteria Francescana (Italy)
  3. Noma (Denmark)

 

2014

  1. Noma (Denmark)
  2. El Celler De Can Roca (Spain)
  3. Osteria Francescana (Italy)

 

El Celler de Can Roca sign

World’s Number ONE Restaurant in 2015 + 2013

 

2013

  1. El Celler De Can Roca (Spain)
  2. Noma (Denmark)
  3. Osteria Francescana (Italy)

 

2012

  1. Noma (Denmark)
  2. El Celler De Can Roca (Spain)
  3. Mugaritz (Spain)

 

2011

  1. Noma (Denmark)
  2. El Celler De Can Roca (Spain)
  3. Mugaritz (Spain)

 

2010

  1. Noma (Denmark)
  2. El Bulli (Spain)
  3. The Fat Duck (UK)

 

2009

  1. El Bulli (Spain)
  2. The Fat Duck (UK)
  3. Noma (Denmark)

 

El Bulli

World’s Number ONE Restaurant in 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006 + 2002

 

2008

  1. El Bulli (Spain)
  2. The Fat Duck (UK)
  3. Pierre Gagnaire (France)

 

2007

  1. El Bulli (Spain)
  2. The Fat Duck (UK)
  3. Pierre Gagnaire (France)

 

2006

  1. El Bulli (Spain)
  2. The Fat Duck (UK)
  3. Pierre Gagnaire (France)

 

2005

  1. The Fat Duck (UK)
  2. El Bulli (Spain)
  3. The French Laundry (USA)

 

2004

  1. The French Laundry (USA)
  2. The Fat Duck (UK)
  3. El Bulli (Spain)

 

2003

  1. The French Laundry (USA)
  2. El Bulli (Spain)
  3. Le Luis XV, Alain Ducasse (Monaco)

 

2002

  1. El Bulli (Spain)
  2. Gordon Ramsey (UK)
  3. The French Laundry (USA)

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * 

KEEP UP TO DATE WITH THE CURRENT 100 WORLDS BEST RESTAURANTS FOR 2018:

FULL LIST 1 – 50 World’s  Best Restaurants 2018 here ->  https://www.gourmandbreaks.com/…/results-worlds-50-best-res…/

 

FULL LIST 51 – 100 World’s  Best Restaurants 2018 here -> https://www.gourmandbreaks.com/…/worlds-50-best-restaurants…/

 

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *   

We, Gourmand Breaks,  have many fine dining opportunities for you all over Spain and / or Portugal. Any of our sample private Gourmand Breaks Private Food, Wine and Cultural Tours gives you the chance of fine dining – contact us for your custom-designed quote!

 

Seville Sights Map

The province of Girona (North of Barcelona) in Spain is one of the world’s major food and wine destinations and a region at the forefront of culinary innovation – El Bulli (near the town of Roses, now closed but many local chefs trained here) was 5 times awarded the World’s Number One Restaurant and El Celler de Can Roca (in Girona city) has been awarded the World’s Number One Restaurant twice (in 2013 and 2015) and is the current Worlds Nº3 Restaurant.

The Emporda region of Spain is located within the province of Girona on the Costa Brava. Medieval villages, pine-clad hillsides sloping down to crystal clear bays and picturesque fishing villages make up this enchanting region; it’s a wonderful place to explore, enjoy the natural countryside and indulge in delicious local cuisine.

The gastronomy of the Emporda region is rich and varied with a cuisine classed as ‘sea and mountain’, as local produce comes from both the land and the sea.  You will surely enjoy indulging in the delicious star products such as:  Freshly caught Mediterranean fish, Prawns from Palamós, Anchovies from L’Escala, Rice from Pals , DOP Emporda Olive Oil and DO Emporda Wines to name a few. Dining here is not just about eating and drinking, it is a way of life!

Not surprising, therefore, that Michelin have dished out some stars here in the Emporda area of Girona with the likes of Michelin 2* Restaurant Miramar (Llançà) and Michelin 1* Restaurants: Castell Peralada (Peralada), Els Brancs (Platja de Canyelles Petites, Roses), Emporium (Castelló d’Empuries), Bo.Tic (Corça) and Casamar (Llafranc).

With such great standing and local produce the Emporda region is filled with great places to eat, making it difficult to single out the best!  Without a doubt the Michelin restaurants are all well worth a mention but here are just a few of our favorites,  that we should probably keep to ourselves, but we love to share :-)

Compartir, Cadaques

A great restaurant, opened in 2012, by 3 ex-Bulli chefs.  Modern well-presented small dishes to share (hence the name, as Compartir in Catalan means Share in English) are offered in a friendly and comfortable atmosphere. The style is contemporary cuisine, based on the culinary tradition of the area. Booking is indispensable as it is the trendiest place in the area.

In 2014 Chefs Oriol, Eduard and Mateu opened another restaurant, but this time in Barcelona, Disfrutar (“Enjoy” in English) and it has already been awarded with its second Michelin Star (for the 2018 Michelin Guide to Spain & Portugal). Will Compartir soon be able to share a Michelin star status with Disfrutar? We think it is just a matter of time :-)
Compartir

Mas Pou, Palau-Sator

A wonderful local restaurant housed in a 16th-century stone farmhouse in a sleepy medieval village. This authentic and rustic restaurant is family run and serves truly Catalan food, all delicious, traditional and great value. If you’re stuck for a decision on a starter then try their “pica-pica” which is an array of small dishes and a great opportunity to taste various Catalan dishes and produce.  You will certainly not leave here hungry :-)

Mas Pou

Entre Dos Mons, Palamos

This fantastic little and elegant place is ideally located in the middle of the restaurant area of Palamos and only opened in spring 2016. Translating to English as “Between two worlds” the name refers to the young and talented owners and the cultures they were raised in – Peruvian and Catalan. The result is a cuisine that draws inspiration from their childhood memories as well as from influences acquired over the years. Beautifully presented dishes and sophisticated desserts alongside excellent service are guaranteed at this fabulous fusion restaurant.

Entre Dos Mons

 

Can Dolç, Sant Feliu de Boada

Located in a quiet and peaceful rural village, next to the stone-house-surrounded church, this old-fashioned restaurant literally translates as “The Sweet House”. This must surely refer to the delicious homemade desserts as their house specialty is Grilled Meats or “Carns a la Brasa”.  Nothing fancy, just authentic local dishes, quality meat, great variety of appetizers, homemade desserts and an extensive wine list, all accompanied by a charming rural atmosphere, will find you enjoying excellent Catalan cuisine.

Can Dolç

 

Villa Teresita Restaurant at Hostal Empuries , Empuries

This delightful restaurant is the gastronomic offering of a delightful and romantic little hotel just on the Empuries beach (near L’Escala), with a lovely terrace providing picturesque sea views. Chef focuses on eco-Mediterranean cuisine using local and home-grown produce to combine Mediterranean sea-fare and innovative recipes. Not surprisingly, due to its prime position in the bay of Roses next to the fishing port of L’Escala, the fish dishes are exceptional.

Hostal Empuries

 

We have many great dining opportunities for you all over Spain, Portugal and SW France.  Any of our sample private Gourmand Breaks Private Food, Wine and Cultural Tours gives you the chance to sample all kinds of restaurants from fine-dining and Michelin stars to authentic haunts and tapas haunts – contact us for your personal quote!

DSC05670

Welcome New Year!

One we hope is full of cheer

And of far travels for you

And great experiences too!

Dream that two thousand 18

Brings you sights you’ve not seen?

And tastes of local food,

Or dining a la Michelin mood?

Dream of Portugal, Spain,

Stroll a French country lane?

Take a walk through the vines

And sip fine top class wines?

Well, there’s no need to dream,

Contact your Gourmand Breaks team

As we’ve got lots to share

To take your dream there.

Nerua Interior

IMG_7227

 

At Gourmand Breaks we are specialist Food, Wine and Cultural Private Tour creators, custom designing exclusive trip itineraries just for you!

On our website you will find many great sample Food, Wine and Cultural Private Tours in Spain, Portugal and SW France, to give you ideas. But, remember, while these samples are all “ready to wear” we can modify any to suit your preferences or build your personal ideal Private Food, Wine and Cultural Tour Itinerary from scratch!

Don’t delay, contact us today :-)

celler de capçanes kosher wine tour

The history of Judaism in Spain dates back to Roman times, while some research even suggests that
they may have inhabited the country earlier than the 3rd century. You may not be aware that  Spanish Jews were one of the largest Jewish communities worldwide, living peacefully under both Muslim and Christian rule until the year 1492 when  Isabel and Ferdinand expelled them during the inquisition.

Experience the enduring Jewish heritage that Spain offers, on one of our private tours like our Jewish Heritage Tour of Spain including Barcelona, Girona, Besalu, Seville, Cordoba, Toledo and Madrid.  Or, you could  combine Spain with Portugal and SW France on the same private tour to discover more of the Iberian Peninsula Jewry, a history which is one of both glory and tragedy.

Currently,  there are approximately 40,000 Jews living in Spain, and of that very healthy percentage, there is clearly a strong contingent of wine aficionados!

Capçanes winery in Montsant, is the very first winery in Spain to produce a Kosher wine in the 20th century, although Kosher wine has been in existence since 636 AD in Israel and may have been in Spain prior to Capçanes innovative move to commence making Kosher wine.

Capçanes dates back to the 19th century and was one of the many victims of the grape vine infection Phylloxera in Spain. Almost totally wiped out and under resourced, it was some time before in 1933 five families joined forces to create the co-operative of Capçanes. Over the years the co-operative grew steadily until 1995 when a Jewish family from Barcelona requested that they make the first Kosher wine in Spain and times truly changed for Capçanes. It meant the installation of new equipment allowing the winemakers to identify, isolate and vinify under controlled “Lo Mebushal” conditions, small parcels of quality fruit.”  Subsequently, the Peraj Ha’abib (Flor de Primavera or Spring Flower) was the wine that placed Capçanes on the map worldwide.

What is Kosher Wine?

  1. According to the practice known as orla, the grapes of new vines cannot be used for winemaking until the fourth year of planting.
  2. No other fruits or vegetables may be grown in between the rows of the vines (kalai hakerem)
  3. After the first harvest, the field must lie fallow every seventh year. Each of these sabbatical years is known as shnat shmita.
  4. From the onset of the harvest, only kosher tools and storage facilities may be used in the winemaking process, and all of the winemaking equipment must be cleaned [sometimes up to 7 times with hot water] to be certain that no foreign objects remain in the equipment or vats.
  5. From the moment the grapes reach the winery, only Sabbath observant [male] Jews are allowed to come in contact with the wine.
  6. All of the materials (e.g. yeasts) used in the production and clarification of the wines must be certified as kosher.
  7. A symbolic amount of wine, representing the tithe (truma vama’aser) once paid to the Temple in Jerusalem must be poured away from the tanks or barrels in which the wine is being made.
  8. A Kosher wine proves to be a challenge to any winemaker. The winemaker may not have any contact with his wine other than through the Rabbi. Which means, that if the winemaker at Capçanes wants to check on his wine, he must ask the Rabbi to come in from Barcelona and take out a sample for him to both see and taste.

Peraj Ha’abib is made with 35% Cabernet Sauvignon, 35% Garnatxa Negra and 30% Samsó and aged for 12 months in new and one year old, Kosher French oak barrels. The wine is incredibly dark in color with a fabulous black cherry, chocolate and floral nose, worthy of accolades.

The 16,000 bottles of kosher wine produced each year represent only about 5 percent of Capçanes’ production but attract most of the attention. The wine is exported to the United States and Israel, mostly, but it also finds its way to small Jewish communities in Europe and Mexico.

Capçanes has three extremely knowledgeable winemakers, each of whom is dedicated to a specific area and together they bring their talents to their business. Angel Teixido is the most experienced and is in charge of the vineyard control. Francesc Perello coordinates bottling and wine analysis and Jürgen Wagner composes and styles the blends.

We only have good comments to make about their excellent customer-oriented philosophy, not to mention the superb quality of their wine!

If you would like to learn more about Kosher wines, then why not include a visit while you’re staying in Barcelona to this prestigious winery which produces some of the most well-known Kosher Wines, with a tour of the facilities, followed by a tasting of their best Kosher wines.

We cover many wine regions and you could too on your custom-built tour itinerary with Gourmand Breaks. Here are just some of our Sample Wine Tour Itineraries in Spain, Portugal and SW France.

The New World’s Best Restaurants 2017 (Full List) has been now been presented and the Top Spots for 2017  have been claimed by:

  • Eleven Madison Park, New York, USA, at Number 1
  • Osteria Francescana, Modena, Italy, at Number 2
  • El Celler de Can Roca, Girona, Spain, at Number 3

 

 

Eleven Madison Park climbed 2 places from last years Number 3 to become the Worlds Best Restaurant for 2017, while Osteria Francescana and El Celler de Can Roca both fell 1 place to their current places of 2 and 3 respectively.

 

It seems that Spain and Portugal had a bit of a roller coaster ride in the Worlds Best Restaurants List for 2017, with some climbing, some falling, some appearing and others disappearing! There is, however, still a strong Iberian presence in the acclaimed Restaurant Magazine’s world famous List and here’s what happened and where everyone stands for the Worlds Best Restaurants List for 2017:

 

  • El Celler De Can Roca – Girona, Spain – falls 1 place to No.3 but is awarded the Ferrari Trento Art of Hospitality Award 2017

 

  • Asador Etxebarri – Axpe, Spain – climbs 4 places to No.6 in the Worlds Best Restaurants List for 2017

 

  • Mugaritz – San Sebastian, Spain – falls 2 places to No.9 in the Worlds Best Restaurants List for 2017

 

  • Tickets – Barcelona, Spain – climbs 4 places to No.25 in the Worlds Best Restaurants List for 2017 

 

  • Arzak – San Sebastian,  Spain – falls 9 places to No.30 in the Worlds Best Restaurants List for 2017

 

  • Azurmendi – Larrabetzu, Spain –  falls 22 places to No.38 in the Worlds Best Restaurants List for 2017

 

  • Disfrutar – Barcelona, Spain  – appears for the 1st time at No.55 and is also awarded the Miele One To Watch Award 2017

 

  • Nerua – Bilbao, Spain – falls 1 place to No.56 in the Worlds Best Restaurants List for 2017

 

  • Quique Dacosta – Denia, Spain – falls 13 places to No.62 in the Worlds Best Restaurants List for 2017

 

  • Martin Berasategui – Lasarte-Oria, Spain  – falls 18 places to No.77 in the Worlds Best Restaurants List for 2017

 

  • Belcanto – Lisbon, Portugal – falls 7 places to No.85 in the Worlds Best Restaurants List for 2017

 

  • DiverXo – Madrid, Spain – disappears from the Worlds Best Restaurants List where, in 2016, it held position No.79

 

 

FULL LIST of all the top 50 restaurants :  World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2017 from 1 – 50 

All restaurants placed 51 – 100 FULL LIST : World’s Best Restaurants 2017 from 51 – 100 

 

www.sanpellegrino.com

www.sanpellegrino.com

 

Let’s hope that next year, 2018, the World’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards Ceremony provides Spain and Portugal with lots of high places on the Restaurant Magazine’s prestigious gastronomic list ! After all, the Worlds 50 Best Restaurants 2018 awards will be presented from Spain :-) from the foodie mecca known as the Basque Country – in particular from Bilbao!

We’re already excited for next year !!!!!

We have many fine dining opportunities for you all over Spain and / or Portugal.  Any of our sample private Gourmand Breaks Private Food, Wine and Cultural Tours gives you the chance of fine dining – contact us for your personal quote!.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year 2017
Bon Nadal i Feliç Any Nou 2017
Feliz Navidad y Prospero Año Nuevo 2017
Feliz Natal e Feliz Ano Novo 2017

happy-holidays-to-one-and-all

“Cheers!” from Spain :-)

We wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Healthy & Prosperous New Year 2017!

With compliments of the festive season from Ursula, Joanne and the Gourmand Breaks team!

Huge congratulations to the Spanish Restaurants who yet again feature strongly in the World’s Best Restaurants List. Occupying 10% of the prestigious World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 List, half of them climbed positions and half fell, but all 10 Spanish restaurants maintain their status in the Top 100 Restaurants of the World 2016 (7 in the Top 50, of which 3 are in the Top 10).

Portugal,  last year, had 2 entries in the 51-100 List but for the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 List just one stays. Congratulations to Belcanto in Lisbon, slowly but surely establishing its gastronomic offering by climbing up the charts.

worlds 50 best restaurants 2016

Here’s a look at the Spanish and Portuguese movers and shakers in the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 List:

Nº 2 – El Celler de Can Roca, Girona, Spain, falls from Nº 1 to Nº 2 on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 List

Nº 7 – Mugaritz, San Sebastian, Spain, falls from Nº 6 to Nº7 on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 List

Nº 10 – Asador Etxebarri, Axpe, Spain, climbs from Nº 13 to Nº 10 on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 List

Nº 16 – Azurmendi, Larrabetzu, Spain, climbs from Nº 19 to Nº 16 on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 List

Nº 21 – Arzak, San Sebastian, Spain, falls from Nº 17 to Nº21 on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 List

Nº 29 – Tickets, Barcelona, Spain, climbs from Nº 42 to Nº29 on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 List

Nº 49 – Quique Dacosta, Denia, Spain, falls from Nº 39 to Nº49 on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 List

Nº 55 – Nerua, Bilbao, Spain, climbs from Nº 68 to Nº55 on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 List

Nº 59 – Martín Berasategui, Lasarte-Oria, Spain, climbs from Nº 61 to Nº 59 on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 List

Nº 78 – Belcanto, Lisbon, Portugal, climbs from Nº 91 to Nº 78 on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 List

Nº 79 – DiverXO, Madrid, Spain, falls from Nº 59 to Nº 79 on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 List

N/A – Vila Joya, Albufeira, Portugal, disappears from the list where last year it was at nº 98

 

Here are the COMPLETE Lists for the World’s Best Restaurants 2016:

1 – 50 World’s Best 50 Restaurants 2016 – FULL LIST

51 – 100 World’s Best Restaurants 2016 – FULL LIST

 

There are literally thousands of restaurants all over the world – hundreds of thousands! – and acclaimed Restaurant Magazine narrows it down to organize, compile and present, year after year, The World’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards and List.

This prestigious list is an annual recollection of the opinions and experiences of over 900 international restaurant industry experts and the ceremony is attended by the world’s finest chefs, international media and the world’s most influential restaurateurs.

This year, 2016, the awards ceremony was presented from The Cipriani Wall Street in New York, USA, the first time the ceremony has moved from its beginnings (the first list was published in 2002) in England, from London!

Next year, for 2017, the World’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards Ceremony will be heading to Melbourne, Australia!!!

We have many fine dining opportunities for you all over Spain and / or Portugal.  Any of our sample private Gourmand Breaks Private Food, Wine and Cultural Tours gives you the chance of fine dining – contact us for your personalized quote!.

The results for the WORLD’S 1-50 BEST RESTAURANTS 2016 will be announced on Monday night!!!

The World’s 50 Best Restaurants NEW 2016 complete list will be presented, from it’s new home in New York, on the 13th of June and we’ll keep you updated …… oh we’re so anxious to know if:

El Celler de Can Roca, Girona, Spain will remain at Nº 1?

Tickets, Barcelona, Spain rises from Nº 42?

If Arzak, San Sebastian, Spain, will return to the Top 10 from it’s current place at Nº 17 ?

If Mugaritz, San Sebastian, Spain, stays put at Nº 6?

If Quique Dacosta, Alicante, Spain, rises or falls from Nº 39?

If Azurmendi, Basque Country, Spain, climbs higher than Nº 19?

If the “Best BBQ in the World” Asador Etxebarri, Basque Country, Spain, enters the Top 10 from Nº 13?

ALL WILL BE REVEALED NEXT WEEK ……. Watch this space!

worlds best 50

In the meantime the results are already in for the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 FULL LIST 51-100!!! And with this news we are delighted to report that there are 4 Spanish/Portuguese entries in the Top 51- 100 list for 2016:

Nº 55 NERUA, Michelin 1 star restaurant in the Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao, Spain

Nº 59 MARTIN BERASATEGUI, Michelin 3 star restaurant in the Basque Country, Spain

Nº 78 BELCANTO, Michelin 2 star restaurant in Lisbon, Portugal

Nº 79 DiverXO, Michelin 3 star restaurant in Madrid, Spain

Worlds Best Top 3

Last year’s awards from London

We have many fine dining opportunities for you all over Spain and / or Portugal. Any of our sample private Gourmand Breaks Private Food, Wine and Cultural Tours gives you the chance of fine dining – contact us for your personalized quote!.

 

RESULTS ARE IN for the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 FULL LIST 51-100!!!

At Number 55 for the World’s Best Restaurants List 2016 is:

NERUA, Bilbao  – a Michelin 1 star restaurant at the hands of Josean Alija!!!

Josean Alija

Nerua

Nerua dish

The World’s 50 Best Restaurants List 1-50  will be awarded at a grand ceremony in New York, on the 13th of June and we’ll keep you posted!

We have many fine dining opportunities for you all over Spain and / or Portugal.  Any of our sample private Gourmand Breaks Private Food, Wine and Cultural Tours gives you the chance of fine dining – contact us for your personalized quote!.