The World Restaurant Awards To Debut In February 2019

World Restaurant Awards

Stars of the culinary industry gathered in Paris to help unveil “Oscars for the restaurant world”


IMG announced last week the creation of The World Restaurant Awards – a groundbreaking new award show for a restaurant-hungry public increasingly obsessed with eating, drinking and travel. The awards, produced by IMG, were conceived in partnership with restaurant journalist Joe Warwick (Creative Director) working alongside legendary gastronomic writer and broadcaster Andrea Petrini (Chair of the Judging Panel).  

World Restaurant AwardsThe World Restaurant Awards will be the annual event recognising and celebrating the diversity of the international restaurant scene, delivered by the team that brings Taste Festivals to 20 cities around the world, as well as The Big Feastival and Margaret River Gourmet Escape.  

The World Restaurant Awards will be a truly international collaboration. Boasting an unrivalled judging panel of celebrated restaurant industry figures, including Yannick Alléno, Elena Arzak, Alex Atala, Massimo Bottura, David Chang, Dominique Crenn, Hélène Darroze, Daniel Humm, René Redzepi, Ana Roš and Clare Smyth, alongside an intercontinental selection of the world’s most-travelled and best-informed members of the culinary press. Each member of the 100-strong judging panel has been carefully selected on the basis of their restaurant knowledge and well-stamped passports, to provide rich insight into the international restaurant scene.  

World Restaurant Awards
Massimo Bottura and Daniel Humm were among some of the world’s best chefs convening at a workshop to define the objectives of the World Restaurant Awards.

The judging panel convened in Paris today for a collaborative workshop to define the ongoing objectives for the awards and announce that the first edition will take place in the French capital on February 18, 2019.

On February 18, 2019, stars of stage and screen will join the restaurant industry elite in the world’s first televised restaurant awards ceremony, mirroring the glamour and anticipation of awards in industries including film, music, art, design and fashion. 

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Justin Clarke, SVP & Managing Director of Culinary, IMG, said: “With the full force of IMG and WME behind us, we are delighted to bring this first-of-its-kind and star-studded awards programme to life. As the site of the Western world’s first restaurants and a centre of culinary excellence, Paris is a natural and dynamic home for our inaugural event.” 

Warwick commented: “The World Restaurant Awards will be conducted with complete integrity, total transparency and a real sense of inclusivity. We want to make everyone think about the full gamut of the world’s great restaurants – old and new, from luxury destinations to humble institutions – and what makes them so special.” 

Petrini added: “We’d like to make The World Restaurant Awards about the pleasure of eating, drinking, travelling and forward thinking. Not the Nobel Prize for food but rather our take on the idea of an Oscars for the restaurant world, with all the sense of zeitgeist and glamour that implies.”

The World Restaurant Awards is proud to work with a prestigious line-up of partners including Singapore Tourism Board, where Singapore will be the Official Culinary Destination Partner; Champagne Laurent-Perrier; luxury kitchen appliance manufacturer Gaggenau; and Fine Dining Lovers. 

The judging panel gathered today also made a commitment to the Perennial Farming Initiative, the chosen charity for The World Restaurant Awards, which is dedicated to combating climate change by mobilising support for regenerative agriculture in the food world. Co-founders Karen Leibowitz and Anthony Myint have a history of leadership in the restaurant industry – notably as co-founders of The Perennial, which has been lauded as the most sustainable restaurant in the world, and of Mission Chinese Food, which has won international acclaim and raised enough money to provide over one million meals for the SF/Marin Food Bank. 

For more information, please visit restaurantawards.world  #worldrestaurantawards


Joe Warwick – Creative Director of The World Restaurant Awards: Editor, writer, broadcaster and co-founder of The World’s 50 Best Restaurants. The third edition of his bestselling international restaurant guide Where Chefs Eat has just been published by Phaidon.

Andrea Petrini – Chair of the Judging Panel: Editor, writer, broadcaster and creator of the ground-breaking gastronomic roadshow that is Gelinaz!, the rotating cast of which includes a mix of the world’s greatest chefs and the very latest culinary talent.

World Restaurant Awards
(L-R) Andrea Petrini and Joe Warwick

IMG is a global leader in sports, fashion, events and media, operating in more than 30 countries. The company manages some of the world’s greatest sports figures and fashion icons; stages hundreds of live events and branded entertainment experiences annually; and is a leading independent producer and distributor of sports and entertainment media. IMG also specializes in sports training and league development, as well as marketing, media and licensing for brands, sports organizations and collegiate institutions. IMG is part of the Endeavor (formerly WME | IMG) network.

The Perennial Farming Initiative is dedicated to combating climate change by mobilizing support for regenerative agriculture within the food world.  The co-founders are Karen Leibowitz and Anthony Myint, who have a history of leadership in the restaurant industry. As environmental and social impact restaurateurs, they are committed to mobilizing around regenerative agriculture as a climate solution.