The problematic yet popular award system World’s 50 Best Restaurants announced its top rankings today, with Enrique Olvera’s NYC-based Mexican stunner Cosme nabbing the highest ranking among U.S. restaurants.
Cosme jumped two spots this year to No. 23 — another win for the chic Flatiron restaurant whose chef Daniela Soto-Innes was named 2019’s “World’s Best Female Chef.” It’s a big leap for Cosme, which first debuted as No. 40 on the top 50 list in 2017.
Meanwhile, Midtown seafood temple Le Bernardin dropped 10 spots to No. 36 and Dan Barber’s seasonal Tarrytown gem Blue Hill at Stone Barns dropped 16 spots to No. 28.
Former “World’s Best” restaurant winner Eleven Madison Park — which placed fourth last year — was off the 2019 list following a new rule that makes former No. 1 placers ineligible for rankings.
World’s 50 Best, announced in Singapore on Tuesday, has received criticism over the years for its often Eurocentric, male-led picks. Recently it’s taken note of that, announcing this year that it’s trying to diversify its award system.
Part of that was rolling out a new rule that no restaurant that has earned the title of “best restaurant in the world” will be eligible for that title or the list ever again, though a recent report suggests this rule change also had something to do with chef egos.
Eleven Madison Park is now grouped with other former No. 1 winners in a new category called “Best of the Best.” Previous top ranker Noma won the No. 2 spot this year, skirting the new rule after renovating and reopening under a new concept. The No. 1 spot went to Mirazur in Menton, France.
Other NYC restaurants gained recognition last week, too. This year, the organization expanded its list of entries from 100 to 120; the back part of that list included David Chang’s Ko at No. 76, tasting counter Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare at No. 77, and small plates wonder Estela at No. 80. The longer list also gave room for Per Se at No. 115 and Korean newcomer Atomix at No. 119.
And earlier this year, chef Soto-Innes — who runs NYC’s top modern Mexican restaurants Cosme and Atla — won the controversial World’s Best Female Chef title. At the ceremony, she spoke of using her restaurants as a platform to fight prejudice in kitchens around the world.