Spain once again is home to the world's top restaurant.
Avant-garde eatery El Celler de Can Roca in Girona, Spain, was named to the No. 1 spot on Restaurant magazine's annual ranking of the world's 50 best restaurants during a ceremony in London on Monday. Rene Redzepi's innovative Danish restaurant Noma had held the honor for the past three years, after ousting renowned Spanish restaurant elBulli from the top spot in 2010.
The three Michelin-starred El Celler is run by three brothers — Josep, Jordi and Joan Roca. It had been ranked No. 2 for the past two years. Opened in 1986, El Celler is known for dishes that blend innovative cooking techniques with traditional ingredients, such as lobster parmentier with black trumpets and Iberian suckling pig with pepper sauce and garlic and quince terrine.
Noma, which has a meticulous focus on indigenous ingredients, fell to No. 2 on this year's list. In third place is Modena, Italy's Osteria Francescana, which has placed in the top 10 restaurants since 2010.
Six U.S. restaurants made the list, but only one broke into the top 10 — Daniel Humm's Eleven Madison Park in New York was No. 5, up from 10th place last year. Thomas Keller's Per Se in New York fell from sixth place to 11th, and his Yountville, Calif., restaurant The French Laundry, came in at No. 47, down from 43rd. The French Laundry held the top spot in 2003 and 2004.
Grant Achatz' ulta-modernist Alinea in Chicago fell from seventh to 15th this year. It had been in the top 10 since 2009. Eric Ripert's seafood-focused Le Bernardin in New York held fast at No. 19, while Daniel Boulud's Daniel in New York slipped from 25th to 29th.
The Top 10:
1 — El Celler de Can Roca, Girona, Spain
2 — Noma, Copenhagen, Denmark
3 — Osteria Francescana, Modena, Italy
4 — Mugaritz, San Sebastian, Spain
5 — Eleven Madison Park, New York, United States
6 — D.O.M., Sao Paulo, Brazil
7 — Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, London, Britain
8 — Arzak, San Sebastian, Spain
9 — Steirereck, Vienna, Austria
10 — Vendome, Bergisch Gladbach, Germany
The complete list can be found at the website of the ranking's sponsor, S. Pellegrino: http://bit.ly/11Rkagn