The World's 50 Best Restaurants is a list produced by Restaurant magazine, based on a poll of international chefs, restaurateurs, gourmands and restaurant critics.
In addition to the main ranking, the Chef's Choice list is based on votes from the fifty head chefs from the restaurants on the previous year's list.
The first place on the list has been dominated by elBulli and Noma. In 2002 and 2006–2009, elBulli was determined to be the world's best restaurant, winning more times than any other restaurant. In 2010, Noma received the first place award. It was maintained in 2011 and again in 2012. However, in 2013 El Celler De Can Roca took over the first position and Noma regained it in 2014. Eleven Madison Park in New York City is the current top restaurant, the first American restaurant to top the list since Thomas Keller's The French Laundry in 2004. Currently in second place is Massimo Bottura's Osteria Francescana.
The list originated as a one-off stunt by the staff of Restaurant magazine, who came up with the idea at the Shaston Arms public house in London's Carnaby Street. It was more successful than they expected and soon became established as a major event in the culinary world.
The World's 50 Best Restaurants list is compiled from the votes of the "World’s 50 Best Restaurants Academy", a group of 27 panels established to make the ranking. The world is divided into regions, with a chairperson in each region appointed for their knowledge of their part of the restaurant world. These chairs each selected a voting panel of 35 members, who cast a total of 5,859 votes.
There is no list of nominees; each member of the international voting panel votes for their own personal choice of seven restaurants. To ensure that there are winners from many regions, judges are encouraged to vote for up to three restaurants in their own region, with the rest cast outside their home region. No voting member is allowed to vote for their own
The World's 50 Best Restaurants list has been criticised for the lack of reliability of this ranking and a lack of female representation and for being overly Eurocentric.