Sydney is the fifth best city in the world for fine dining according to an annual poll of the world’s most exclusive jetsetters.
The harbour city was just behind New York, Paris, London and Tokyo, in US-based lifestyle magazine Elite Traveler’s annual ranking of the best places to eat.
The magazine caters for private jet users.
Sydney had three restaurants, Melbourne two, in the Elite Traveler Top 100 Restaurants in the World dining guide. But overall, the rankings for the country’s best restaurants plummeted from the 2014 results.
Sydney stalwart Tetsuya’s was the best Australian performer at 64, down four places, just ahead of Ben Shewry’s cult Melbourne restaurant, Attica, at 72, which fell from 56.
Tetsuya Wakuda’s Singapore restaurant, Waku Ghin, was steady at 37, just ahead of Noma on 38, the Danish restaurant that tops the industry ranked World’s 50 Best.
Expat Australian chef Brett Graham’s London restaurant, The Ledbury, fell 3 places to 12. Another expat, David Thompson, saw his Bangkok Thai, Nahm, vanish from the list. Melbourne could argue that it has a third restaurant on the list, with Heston Blumenthal’s The Fat Duck at No. 5. It flew south from its 20-year-old home in Bray, outside of London, to Melbourne’s Crown Towers for a six-month stint in Australia.
Mark Best’s Surry Hills fine diner, Marque, had the biggest fall among the Australian contingent, down from 35 in 2014 to 80, while Shannon Bennett’s Vue de Monde, atop Melbourne Rialto tower, is at 81, down 23.
Quay at Sydney’s overseas passenger terminal, long regarded as one of the nation’s best restaurants and often rated No. 1 by local guides, just scraped on to the list at 97, have debuted last year at 88.
But Elite Traveller says the Sydney trio ranks the city alongside San Francisco and Spain’s San Sebastian, with Melbourne’s pair ranking it 15th. Unsurprisingly for a New York-based magazine, the Big Apple tops the rankings with 9 restaurants, just ahead of Paris with 8.
Melbourne meanwhile makes the top fifteen cities in the world for fine dining with two restaurants.
The drop in the rankings comes despite an 18-month, $40 million campaign by Tourism Australia, called Restaurant Australia, which culminated in a $1.5 million dinner in Tasmania for 250 “influencers” last year.
Australia’s five listings ranks it at no. 9 in Elite Traveller’s national dining destinations, the same result, with the same number of restaurants as last year.
For the fourth year in a row, Grant Achatz’s 18-to-22 course degustation restaurant, Alinea, in Chicago, took out the top spot. And for the first time, the US jumped ahead of France in the rankings with 19 places on the list.
Here are the top 10 restaurants on the Elite 100 2015:
1. Alinea, Chicago, USA
2. El Celler de Can Roca, Girona, Spain
3. Azurmendi, Larrabetzu, Spain
4. Eleven Madison Park, New York, USA
5. The Fat Duck, Bray, UK
6. Robuchon au Dome, Macua, China
7. Per Se, New York, USA
8. La Pergola, Rome, Italy
9. Le Bernardin, New York, USA
10. Osteria Francescana, Modena, Italy
And here’s the national table:
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