SOURCE: Opinionated About Dining

December 17, 2008 15:00 ET

Opinionated About Dining Survey Names Top Dining Experiences of 2008 Posted by Top Chefs, Restaurateurs & Food Writers

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - December 17, 2008) - While 2008 may not be memorable for the state of the economy, it did not stop foodies from eating out. Opinionated About Dining asked 75 top chefs, restaurateurs, food writers and bloggers where they had their best meals of 2008 and which new chefs and restaurants showed the most potential. The full list of respondents and restaurants can be found at

Participants from the U.S. and Canada included: Dan Barber (Blue Hill, New York), Sean Brock (McCrady's Charleston, S.C.), Tom Colicchio (Craft, New York), Gale Gand (Tru, Chicago), Danny Meyer (Union Square Hospitality Group, New York), Daniel Patterson (Coi, San Francisco), Eric Ripert (Le Bernardin, New York), David Lee (Splendido, Toronto); and from Europe: Tom Aiken (Tom Aiken, London), Fergus Henderson (St. John, U.K.), Sergio Hermann (Oud Sluis, The Netherlands), Jay Raynor (The Observer, London) and the food writer Herve This.

Responses range from casual to fine dining establishments around the world. Restaurants named most frequently include:

Per se, New  York City. Chef Thomas Keller
Noma, Copenhagen, Denmark.  Chef Rene Redzepi
Corton, New York City. Chef Paul Liebrandt
Schloss Berg, Perl Nennig, Germany. Schloss Berg, Chef Christan Bau
El Bulli, Roses, Spain. Chef Ferran Adria
Ryugin, Tokyo, Japan. Chef Seiji Yamamoto

In November 2008, Opinionated About Dining launched a new website which combines its dining survey (launched in 2007) with the reviews and dining commentary of founder and editor, Steve Plotnicki, who The Times of London recently described as someone who has "eaten at just about every fine-dining establishment on the planet." The Opinionated About Dining Survey, compiled and edited by Plotnicki, features ratings and comments for more than 700 restaurants in North America and Europe which were submitted by diners who regularly travel the world in search of the ultimate dining experience.

"Dealing with the chefs in order to compile the list was illuminating," says Plotnicki, who says that among the lesser known restaurants that should be on everyone's radar in 2009, are, Soto in New York City (Chef Sotiro Sotohiro Kosugi ), Mirazur in Menton, France (Chef Mauro Colagreco), and Ubuntu, the vegetarian restaurant in Napa (Chef Jeremy Fox.). Earlier this year, Plotnicki published the Opinionated About Fine Dine Survey of the 100 Best Restaurants in North America and Europe and he says that since the new site was launched, the volume of visitors has quadrupled.

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