Peruvian cuisine returned to occupy the first two places in the list of “50 Best Restaurants in Latin America” with Maido and Central, establishments that repeated in 2018 the header positions obtained last year and that were announced today in Bogota.
Maido, chef Mitsuharu “Micha” Tsumura, was chosen as the number one for “perfectly merge the cuisine of Peru and Japan,” according to the publication “50 Best Restaurants”, which organizes the awards.
Based in Lima, Maido holds the title again because it is “a space where visitors can taste dishes based on Nikkei cuisine that surprisingly fuses Peruvian and Japanese flavors,” the organizers added.
Tsumura, one of the references of contemporary Peruvian cuisine, was born in Lima and his family comes from Osaka (Japan), which allows him to be a bridge between the two culinary cultures.
“Although it has been a difficult year for the whole continent, the kitchen continues to grow, and the kitchen continues to unite us,” Tsumura said when receiving the award at a gala held at the Ágora convention center in Bogotá.
The winner promised to “continue working as before, especially in achieving a kitchen with sustainability” and to “make known different products, little known, but that are wonderful.”
As a chef, Tsumura declares himself “strict” and “quite a perfectionist” despite the fact that in his kitchen, considered an icon in Peru, reigns the “tranquility” necessary for everything to work well.
In the second place he also repeated the Central Lima, directed by Virgilio Martínez and Pía León, who won the award for the best female chef in Latin America in 2018.
In third place was Pujol, by Enrique Olvera, in Mexico City, while the fourth box was for Boragó, located in Santiago, Chile, and whose chef, Rodolfo Guzmán, also received the award for the most sustainable restaurant for his work. friendly practices with the environment and with society.
The fifth position was for DOM, of Sao Paulo and they followed him in the list of the first ten Don Julio (Buenos Aires), A Casa do Porco (Sao Paulo), Astrid y Gastón (Lima), Quintonil (Mexico City) and Leo (Bogotá)
In total, this year the ranking of the 50 Best was composed of eleven restaurants in Mexico, ten Argentines, nine Peruvians, nine from Brazil, five Chileans, four Colombians, one Panamanian and one Uruguayan.
“The main objective of the list is to recognize the best restaurants in the region and we are proud that in each edition it becomes more influential and has a greater global impact,” said the general editor of the “Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants “, William Drew.
On the other hand, Valentina Ortiz, member of the qualifying jury, assured Efe that “in the list there is everything from restaurants with long tablecloths to others of traditional food”,
This, he explained, allows to say that “there is no kitchen in the world that is communicating more and in a more interesting way than the Latin American one”.
Therefore, in the election of the mesons, sponsored by S.Pellegrino and Acqua Panna and that for the second consecutive year is based in Bogota, beyond the food played a determining role aspects such as service and quality.
The above is due, said the expert, that “at the end of the day the best restaurants are those where you have a better time and that has to do with the future of the kitchen because it is necessary to offer unforgettable experiences”.
“Luckily, if something characterizes the ’50 Best ‘is that each year both the Latin American edition and the world are full of surprises,” said the regional president of the contest, Diego Salazar.
The night included the lifetime prize, “Diners Club Lifetime Achievement,” to María Elena Lugo Zermeño and Gerardo Vázquez Lugo, from the Nicos restaurant in Mexico City.
This duo, made up of mother and son, seeks to preserve traditional Mexican cuisine as “a fundamental part of the country’s culture,” according to the organizers.
Also, the Manu Inn, by chef Manu Buffara, located in the Brazilian city of Curitiba, received the “Miele One To Watch” award for its originality, technique, sophistication and “great potential” to enter the list of the 50 best of Latin America in the coming years.
The award for the best pastry chef in Latin America, awarded by the Republic of Cacao, went to the Spanish Jesús Escalera, pastry chef of La Dessert, Guadalajara (Mexico).
The 50 best chefs themselves chose the Venezuelan Carlos Garcia, from Alto, as the best of its kind, who received an award from the Spanish brewer Estrella Damm.