Singapore restaurant reclaims top spot in Asia guide

Wed Oct 20, 2010 12:14pm EDT
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By Elaine Lies

SINGAPORE (Reuters Life!) - A Singapore restaurant reclaimed its crown as the top dining spot in Asia in the latest edition of a regional dining guide, which also saw a Malaysian restaurant make the top 10 for the first time.

Iggy's in Singapore topped the list of Asia's 20 best restaurants in the 2010/2011 Miele Guide, trading places with last year's top choice, L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon in Hong Kong, which came in second.

Parisian Robuchon saw his three Michelin-starred Robuchon a Galera in Macau retain its third-place listing in the guide, which covers 450 restaurants in 17 countries. His Tokyo venue shot up to number 9 from 20 last year.

China had the most restaurants in the top 20 with eight -- six of them in Hong Kong -- followed by Singapore, with five, reflecting which parts of the region are recovering fastest from the recent economic crunch.

"I think restaurants had a hard time last year. I'd go into some places and see only corporate customers," said Aun Koh, director of Ate Media, the Singapore-based company that publishes The Miele Guide.

"But they're coming back now. I think Singapore and Hong Kong have bounced back really well, but I still worry about Japan."

Cilantro Restaurant & Wine Bar in Kuala Lumpur became the first Malaysian restaurant to make the top 10.

A rise in restaurants opened by big-name foreign chefs across the region, especially in Singapore, has helped spur local chefs on to new efforts, Koh said.   Continued...