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Posts tagged ‘David Thompson’

Star Chefs on the Rise in Hong Kong

PG in Central (mid res)

Pierre Gagniere in Central, Hong Kong

 

[UPDATE: Chef Pierre Gagnaire’s will visit his Hong Kong restaurant from October 24th to 30th 2019 to Hong Kong to launch his autumn tasting menu. The five-course menu will be available for lunch and dinner from 24 to 30 October 2018 at HKD1,998 per person.]

Hong Kong is set for another influx of Western celebrity chefs as Yannick Alleno’s long awaited bistro, Terroir Parisien, is slated to open in Central this summer, Bjorn Frantzen has opened Frantzen’s Kitchen and Jean-Georges Vongerichten has returned to the city with Mercato. David Thompson and Wolfgang Puck are also thought to be searching for sites here. But Asian expansion doesn’t mean guaranteed success: Mario Batali’s Carnenvino has closed in Hong Kong, Gordon Ramsay shut his restaurant in Tokyo and both Guy Savoy and Jason Atherton shipped out of Singapore. So what makes some international restaurants thrive in foreign markets while others falter?

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Is there a need for Best Female Chef awards?

Lanshu Chen at the pass

Asia’s Best Female Chef 2014 Lanshu Chen at Le Mout, Taiwan

[UPDATE: The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2017 have been announced amid the usual controversy. Not least because of the lack of female chefs at the helm of restaurants on the list. Highlighted by the fact that the restaurant run by The World’s Best Female Chef 2017, Ana Ros, doesn’t even make it onto the World’s 50 Best restaurants list. (Hisa Franko in Slovenia is number 69 on the “long list”).

Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants awards are no better. Lanshu Chen of Le Mout in Taiwan remains the only recipient of the Asia’s Best Female Chef accolade to be (sole) head chef of a restaurant that’s also recognised as one of Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants. While Bo.Lan in Bangkok which consistently makes the top 50 is helmed by another previous winner, Bo Songvisava, she does so with her husband Dylan Jones (the “Lan” in Bo.Lan).

This year’s Asia’s Best Female Chef May Chow’s eatery, Little Bao in Hong Kong, doesn’t feature in the top 50, neither did any of the restaurants overseen by last years’ winner Margarita Fores of the Philippines or the Tate Dining Room in Hong Kong run by Vicky Lau, Asia’s Best Female Chef 2015.

Which begs the question, is there any point in naming a Best Female Chef if their restaurants are not deemed good enough to be voted one of the Best 50 Restaurants? Or is it further proof that more spotlight on and awareness about female chefs is needed?]

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And the winner is…

David Thompson at Long Chim

David Thompson at Long Chim

Awards season is upon us again, not just in the film and music biz; one of our favourite chefs, David Thompson, of Nahm restaurant in Bangkok and Long Chim in Singapore has been awarded The Diners Club Lifetime Achievement Award 2016. David will be presented with the award at Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants ceremony in Bangkok on February 29th. Bravo!

Magnificence on the Mekong

Aqua Mekong

Aqua Mekong

When we pull up alongside the river I don’t notice the Aqua Mekong at first. What I see is a sleek, luxurious condo all matt grey and dark slatted wood. Then the penny drops: this is the boat. Aqua Mekong is the new, boutique (just 20 cabins) river cruiser from the exclusive Aqua Expeditions owned by Francesco Galli Zugaro.
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Come and Taste – in Singapore

Miang of dried prawns at Long Chim, Marina Bay Sands, Singapore

Miang of dried prawns at Long Chim, Marina Bay Sands, Singapore

[UPDATE: David Thompson has been awarded the Diners Club Lifetime Achievement 2016 as part of Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants.]

Spend a morning with chef David Thompson and it becomes apparent that his knowledge of and passion for Thailand is not just about the food for which he has become celebrated. It also extends to the Thai people, their culture and history.

I learnt this as he whizzed me around, on foot and by long tail boat, the backstreets and klongs, the food markets and stalls of Bangkok, imparting facts and stories as we went along. Not just about the bountiful vegetables on sale and the oyster omelettes we were tucking into but about the buildings and the history and daily life of the streets and waterways themselves.

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