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Antonio’s officially joins list of Asia’s 50 best

Thumbs up for the Philippines. Antonio’s owner Tonyboy Escalante takes his place among the greats in the culinary world.

Thumbs up for the Philippines. Antonio’s owner Tonyboy Escalante takes his place among the greats in the culinary world.

Chef Tonyboy Escalante’s Antonio’s Restaurant in Tagaytay officially joined the prestigious list of the Diner’s Club Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants last Monday, March 9, at the awards ceremony held in Singapore.

“I am motivated now more than ever, although I never pressured myself to win any of these awards. I’ve always just strived to get better at my craft for myself,” Escalante said in an interview.

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Leading the list of Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants this year is Thailand’s Gaggan, which snatched the No. 1 spot from David Thompson’s Nahm, which slipped to No. 7.

Gaggan opened his eponymous restaurant in Bangkok in 2010 and has made waves for reinvigorating Indian cuisine using modern techniques and molecular twists.

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It debuted on the list at No. 17 but climbed to No. 3 last year.

Thailand claims top spots

Thailand performed very well this year with the following restaurants also making the list: Nahm (No. 7), Eat Me (No. 25), Bo.Lan (No. 37) and Issaya Siamese Club (No. 39).

Now you know where to eat when you head to Bangkok, aside from trying its amazing streetfood.

Narisawa maintained its spot at No. 2, although only eight restaurants from Japan made it this year.

Shanghai’s Ultraviolet by Paul Pairet climbed to No. 3 as Hong Kong’s Amber slid down to No. 6.

Meanwhile, 10 restaurants from Singapore made the list, led by Restaurant Andre, which climbed a notch to No. 5.

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I was able to eat at Restaurant Andre on this trip, which set our group of four back 430 SGD each.

“Mas mahal pa dinner natin dito sa airfare natin!” (Our dinner is more expensive than our plane tickets), joked Chef Myrna Segismundo, who joined the food trip.

Chef Andre Chiang, by the way, will be participating in Madrid Fusion Manila this coming April.

He will give a talk at the Congress in SMX.

Singapore restaurants

Other Singapore restaurants on the list: Burnt Ends made the list for the first time (where Chef Jessie Sincioco’s nephew Jeff Claudio works the kitchen under the leadership of the hip and happening chef David Pynt). Tippling Club, run by Australian Chef Ryan Clift, formerly of Vue de Monde, the only Melbourne restaurant in 2007 to make it to the World’s 50 Best Restaurants, joined the list at No. 36. And Osteria Mozza, which proudly has an all-Filipino service team and whose pizzeria sibling is run by Filipina Chef Karla Mendoza, made a comeback.

By the way, if you find yourself in Singapore, check out One Farrer Hotel in Little India. It just opened last year, is sleek and spacious, and has its own MRT stop.

Congratulations to all the restaurants and chefs who made it, especially to Chef Tonyboy Escalante, who has once again brought pride to the Philippines.

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TAGS: Antonio’s, chef, Diner’s Club Asia, dining, food, Restaurant, Tagaytay, Tonyboy Escalante
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