The best new restaurants in the world 2023 Hot List
behlah barbhaya/Jun's

The best new restaurants in the world: 2023 Hot List

This year's best new dining destinations, from Cape Town to Quito to Northern California

Nothing makes us more excited to get up and go than putting together our annual Hot List, now in its 27th year. This curated collection of the world’s best new hotels, cruises, restaurants, cultural destinations, and transportation projects is a labour of love for our global team, which spends the year researching, visiting, and vetting the entries to bring you a definitive directory of places whose style, ethos, and service set new standards for hospitality. This year's dining destinations include a Cape Town establishment serving up contemporary Zulu and Nguni cuisine, a Northern California cafe honouring Ohlone recipes, and a community-driven Quito restaurant igniting Ecuador’s Indigenous dining scene. Here are the 21 best new restaurants in the world.

Click here to see the entire Hot List for 2023.

AllumaLe Photographe du Dimanche/Alluma

Alluma – Paris

At first glance, Alluma may seem like an outlier on the Rue St. Maur stretch of the 11th arrondissement, known most for its natural wine bars and street food joints. But this elegant neo-bistro from the Israeli chef Lirin Tal and his wife Noa has deservedly found its crowd with a vibrant ode to Levantine flavours – on and off the plate. With the help of Name Architecture, the couple brightened up an 860-square-foot former Moroccan restaurant, transforming it with marble tabletops, velvet green banquettes, and its most defining feature, an alabaster white wooden moucharabieh wall that spans the dining room. The most colourful elements come from Tal’s seasonal five-course tasting menu, best experienced at dinner, which might include: sea bream crudo with figs and crushed pistachios, dressed with buttermilk and fig leaf oil; charcoaled celeriac served with black lentils and labneh; and grapefruit-Arak sorbet topped with sumac meringue. Don’t skip out on the wine pairing that showcases an exquisite, mostly organic selection from France, Spain, Italy, and Armenia. Lindsey Tramuta

Le Doyenné – Saint-Vrain, France

The Paris region’s most hotly-anticipated opening of the last year can actually be found 25 miles south of the capital in the small village of Saint-Vrain. It’s where the Australian chefs James Henry and Shaun Kelly, known for their influence in the Parisian bistronomy movement, transformed the former stables of a 19th-century private estate into a working farm, restaurant, and guesthouse driven by the principles of regenerative agriculture. More than one hundred varieties of heirloom fruits, vegetables, and herbs make their way into Henry’s vibrant cooking after being meticulously nurtured by Kelly, who has taken on the role of lead farmer. It’s all served on antiqued dishware in a sprawling dining room with exposed beams and floor-to-ceiling windows that keep the garden within close view. The experience doesn’t begin or end on the plate, however: guests are strongly encouraged to take their apéritif or digestive stroll through the farm. LT

Enigma – Barcelona

The pandemic wasn’t an easy time for a culinary reference such as Barcelona. Enigma, chef Albert Adrià’s Michelin-star restaurant, was no exception. After shutting down for 27 months, and also saying goodbye to the totality of his other projects – Hoja Santa, Bodega 1900, Tickets, and Pakta – during this period, Enigma became the place for Adrià to experiment with different formulas to welcome back local audiences. Along came March 2022, the moment in which the celebrity star chef decided to change his ways and bet it all on just one restaurant… and a new experience. “Before the pandemic, Enigma was all about guests standing up and eating Japanese or teppanyaki-themed dishes at our different bar counters, but now it is our chefs who are going to go straight to them to present the food and do the platings," he shares of a creative menu that revolves around seasonal products, drenched in technique and an exquisite aesthetic. Paula Movil

RavioXO – Madrid

It is Dabiz Muñoz’s newest restaurant, his third in Madrid and an exciting way for those who cannot score a table at his three-Michelin star restaurant DiverXO to get a taste of his food. Here, doughs are the main attraction. Think of pasta and steam but get rid of any preconception you might have of this word to understand the 14 dishes that compose the menu at RavioXO: creations that, at some point, were once members of the culinary offer at DiverXO. Such as the dumpling filled with rabbit pepitoria stew, yellow ají, Chinese spices and carrot textures; or a new version of Muñoz’s Hong Kong interpretation of a Madrilenian stew, with ropa vieja, fried chickpeas, ham broth and black garlic aioli, with a brined cold ravioli filled with quail, sea urchin and jalapeno gazpacho. Juicy bites meant to impress, surprise and keep Muñoz at the top of his game. PM

Place des FêtesChris Coe/Place des Fêtes

Place des Fêtes – New York City

This note-perfect wine bar hits that rare atmospheric sweet spot of warm, intimate and candlelit without feeling sleepy. Rather, it buzzes with a festive energy that’s perfectly paired with chef Nico Russell’s playful Spanish- and Portuguese-inspired small plates and a palate-expanding selection of cocktails and wines by the glass from beverage director Piper Kristensen. For date night, cosy up to the bar with views of the open kitchen, or fill up the large communal table in the back with a group and sample the entire 20-item menu. Either way, try not to miss the crispy maitake mushroom served with a decadent black-garlic truffle fudge. Mercedes Bleth

Masalawala & Sons – New York City

One of Brooklyn’s toughest reservations, Masalawala sits on an unremarkable block in Park Slope. Its insides, however, are anything but. Diners are greeted by marigold garlands, murals reminiscent of South Asian truck art, and a playlist that’s a rotation of 80s Bollywood hits. The star of the show is its Bengali menu, largely anchored by an ingredient that’s indispensable to Bengali cooking: shorshe, or mustard. It's the oil that shimmers atop the khichuri (one-pot meal of rice and lentil), the paste in the bhetki paturi (banana leaf-wrapped fish), and the tempering on the yoghurt chutney. It’s an unfamiliar flavour to many diners, but that’s the kind of boundary-pushing we’ve come to love about Unapologetic Foods – Masalawala is the fifth in the company’s lineup following runaway hits like Dhamaka and Semma. While the food does most of the heavy lifting, there’s a moment of theatre when the daab chingri (prawn curry) arrives in its coconut “utensil” and is served up with an artful choreography. It’s a fun diversion before you get back to the main act – refilling your stainless steel plate. Arati Menon

Emazulwini – Cape Town

Chef Mmabatho Molefe brings contemporary Zulu and Ngoni cuisine to luxury dining with this swank but down-to-earth spot at the V&A Waterfront. With views overlooking the working harbour, the immaculate interior is flecked with white, red, and blue, spotlighting pieces from designers like Thabisa Mjo and Ashanti Design. Diners can expect elevated riffs on homey meals like vetkoek (fried dough) with chicken polony, as well as amasi (fermented milk) ice cream with whey jellies and caramel. The plating is all fine dining, but the vibrant flavours and friendly staff make this place anything but pretentious. Mary Holland

Jun'sbehlah barbhaya/Jun's

Jun's – Dubai

In some ways, chef Kelvin Cheung embodies the Dubai dream: He touched down in the city after stints at celebrated restaurants across Canada, the U.S., Belgium, and India, bringing with him the global sensibility with which the UAE has become synonymous. His menu at Jun’s reflects his cosmopolitan outlook, packing flavours he’s picked up along the way into sophisticated spins on comfort fare: tempura za’atar chaat with tamarind, yoghurt, and avocado; red-hot chicken karaage with waffles; lobster pani puri with achaar; lamb koobideh tsukune; and rainbow heirloom carrots with smoked labneh and soy honey butter. But the real star here may well be Cheung himself, a natural raconteur who makes an effort to come by each table to share the spellbinding stories behind each dish. When the weather is nice, grab a seat on the patio in the shadow of the sparkling spire of the Burj Khalifa—it doesn’t get more Dubai than that. Sarah Khan

Ashley Wilson/La Semilla
La SemillaLa Semilla

La Semilla – Atlanta

This little tropical enclave in Atlanta's Reynoldstown neighbourhood serves up some of the tastiest plant-based dishes in the city. Married duo Sophia Marchese and chef Reid Trapani filled the space with whimsical personal touches, such as vintage decor and hand-painted banana leaves on the bar’s soffit. Marchese oversees the beverage program with drinks befitting the locale, like the agricole fashioned with rum, mole bitters and Angostura. Trapani’s dishes pay homage to Marchese’s Cuban heritage and his travels to Latin America. There’s a vegan Cubano with house-made seitan and jackfruit lechón, but the star of the menu may be the bistec de palomilla made with local lion’s-mane mushrooms. Lia Picard

Mak-'amham/Cafe Ohlone – Berkeley, California

The latest iteration of Cafe Ohlone, a restaurant dedicated to Indigenous foods from Vincent Medina (East Bay Chochenyo) and Louis Trevino (Carmel Valley Rumsen), ‘ottoy serves diners in a space at the Hearst Museum at the University of California, Berkeley, a building formerly named after the anthropologist who falsely declared the Ohlone tribe extinct. In Chochenyo, the language of the Ohlone people, ‘oṭṭoy means to heal, and every aspect of the restaurant is dedicated to that goal, from shell mounds representative of the tribal gravesites raided by UC researchers to a menu that marries traditional Ohlone dishes like tan oak acorn bisque or clams and mussels with contemporary-feeling offerings like a chia and hazelnut pudding. “This is part of our living culture,” Medina says of the restaurant’s mix of celebration and acknowledgement, of old and new. “We are fully embracing all our lived experiences.” Eve Batey

Koji Club – Boston

Nothing can stop a Bostonian with a plan. When lockdown first foiled Alyssa Mikiko DiPasquale’s endeavour to open the greatest sake bar the city had ever seen, she transitioned her business model to a subscription service paired with Zoom education sessions – which sold out consistently. And when supply chain woes across the hemisphere thwarted her ability to import Japan’s most interesting spirits, she used her distinguished reputation as longtime manager and marketer of iconic omakase spot O Ya to get the right people on the phone and the right sakes into her hands. Nevertheless, she persisted, opening an intimate 250-square-foot bar space last year that is as cosy and authentic as anything you would find in Japan. Koji Club's bartenders offer an encyclopedic knowledge of sake's multiverse, and the menu breaks down the spirit’s diversity from mild to wild, using cheeky descriptions such as, “Like walking through a temple in Kyoto wearing Le Labo’s Santal 33.” By the end of each night, you’re brushing elbows with strangers, making friends, and, whether you’re already a sake aficionado or just looking for something to do for date night, walking away with something you didn’t know before you went. “This city lost half of its Japanese restaurants during the pandemic,” said DiPasquale recently. “If I can just help people learn about and appreciate sake, that will be a job well done.” Todd Plummer

Her Place Supper Club – Philadelphia

Back when she was a student at the University of Pennsylvania, Amanda Shulman threw elaborate dinner parties for classmates. Eight years later and with stints at Vetri Cucina and Momofuku Ko under her belt, the chef channels a similar intimate, electric vibe at Her Place, a supper club serving a family-style tasting menu in Center City, Philadelphia. Inside the snug dining room, abuzz with strangers socializing to a soundtrack of 80s hits, Shulman pops in from the open kitchen to describe dishes like chicken liver and apple butter-spiked gougers, lemony hand-rolled pasta, and paper-thin slices of roast beef served with a tangle of crispy fries. At the end of the meal, she floats through the dining room, like any good host, sending off her guests with a tray of warm chocolate chip cookies. Regan Stephens

Mi Compa Chava – Mexico City

Seafood is a hangover cure in Mexico, and almost everyone eating here is intent on either fixing last night’s damage or getting a head start on creating today’s. On the sidewalk, crowds of locals and tourists alike line up for avid fisherman Salvador Orozco’s creative takes on Sinaloa and Baja seafood. The artful aguachile (raw shrimp in spicy sauce) rightfully lands on almost every table, as do selections from the cold bar – which come with house-made hot sauces. Anything from the raw half of the menu is a sure bet, though cooked dishes like the fish birria quesadilla can help fill out a meal. The airy space, bright-yellow metal tables, and open kitchen running the length of the room support chef Salvador Orozco’s vision of a Mexican coastal town seafood cart, while a plant-laden parklet holds outdoor tables. On the sidewalk, crowds of locals and tourists alike line up for the avid fisherman’s creative takes on Sinaloa and Baja seafood. Naomi Tomky


Foresta – Quito

The biophilic interiors of famed Ecuadoran chef Rodrigo Pacheco’s conservation-focussed restaurant give meals there the feeling of a dinner party in a chic greenhouse. Chefs prepare grilled prawns with spicy watermelon on massive volcanic-rock cooktops, and use ingredients like figs sourced from local Indigenous communities, making the experience even sweeter. Katherine Gallardo

Lasai – Rio de Janiero

Despite being just a few metres from its original address in the Botafogo neighbourhood, the 2.0 version of Lasai bares little resemblance to its former concept. Down from 45 seats, chef Rafa Costa e Silva's awarded restaurant now serves only ten diners per service, offering a much more unique experience. A modern, intimate room with no windows, a marble L-shaped counter, and dramatic lighting has replaced the airy old colonial townhouse. The only similarity is Costa e Silva's vegetable-oriented dishes, cooked chiefly with ingredients he grows on his two nearby farms. The change has helped him perfect the service (led by his wife Malena Cardiel) and “thicken the broth” of his minimalist cuisine, relying on more exclusive ingredients, such as sea urchin and ikura. Lasai has consolidated as a top-notch destination in the Marvellous City. Rafael Tonon

Kōnā Corner – Buenos Aires

Kōnā Corner, a 76-seat restaurant in Buenos Aires, is the ultimate expression of acclaimed Argentinian chef Narda Lepes' lifelong passion for Japanese cuisine and culture. Located in the leafy Belgrano neighbourhood, the restaurant blends traditional Japanese dishes with a modern twist. Executive Chef Pablo Chinen and Head Chef Fernando Kanashiro lead the open kitchen in creating an array of dishes that are faithful to Japanese roots and techniques, while presented in a contemporary style. Among the standouts are agedashi tofu, Hanetsuki gyoza, tonkatsu, miso beurre blanc trou, and fukusai – vegetables prepared five ways: raw, cooked, pickled, and nukazuke. Kōnā Corner's minimalist design, hidden lighting, and custom-made dinnerware have all been meticulously considered, creating an elegant and inviting ambience. The sleek upstairs bar, masterminded by renowned bartender Inés de los Santos, is a destination in itself, especially when the karaoke room opens, making it the perfect spot for a memorable sake-induced night out. Allie Lazar

VilasDiego Arenas/Villas
Vilas dining roomVillas

Vilas – Bangkok

Can a dish inspired by a Spanish recipe using Japanese ingredients still be considered Thai? For chef Prin Polsuk, one of Bangkok’s most acclaimed Thai chefs, it most certainly can. At his latest restaurant, a pared-back, pint-size dining room at the base of Bangkok’s landmark King Power Mahanakhon tower, he draws inspiration from King Chulalongkorn’s 1897 journey around Europe and the foreign ingredients and cooking techniques he subsequently added to the royal cookbooks. With the help of Spanish chef Pepe Dasí Jiménez, Polsuk creates seasonal 12-course menus that blur culinary borders. Expect plates such as southern Thai pork belly with coffee kombucha, jellied nam pla waan fish sauce with strawberry and jamón-like salted tuna with honey-pickled melon. Chris Schalkx

Swallow Tainan – Taiwan

There are numerous third-wave coffee shops in southern Taiwan's laid-back Tainan, but this new cafe-cum-bar in a century-old shophouse along one of the city's oldest alleys specialises in morning kick-starts of a different kind. Opened by Mei Chiu and Dan Zhang, a mixologist couple who returned to their native Taiwan after a four-year stint at some of Singapore's top bars, Swallow starts serving cocktails as early as nine in the morning. Days start off with easy-sipping drinks such as black sesame espresso martinis and Taiwanese mountain tea with gin and riesling wine and turn more experimental – think whisky with buckwheat tea or sake vermouth with kombu distillate – after dark. Drop by even if you don't intend on day drinking: the coffee menu is equally thoughtful and features slow drips, espressos and pour-overs with beans from Rufous Roasters in Taipei. Chris Schalkx

The Jade Room + Garden Terrace – Tokyo

The words “custard” and “bread” sit comfortably alongside “miso” and “yuzu” on the menu at Jade Room + Garden Terrace – offering a clue about the British-meets-Japanese innovations that lie behind the cuisine at the new signature restaurant at The Tokyo EDITION, Toranomon. The first Japan venture for London chef Tom Aikens, the restaurant hovers on the cloud-brushing 31st floor of the Kengo Kuma-designed hipster-magnet hotel. The space is as sleek and shiny as the creative clientele: picture walnut panelling tempered by a spectrum of greens (from the jade velvet seats and John Jackson paintings to a cornucopia of plants). The restaurant – which finally opened in October 2022, two years after the hotel debuted, following pandemic-related delays – flows onto a relaxed Garden Terrace (a rare rooftop luxury in Tokyo), with distractingly iconic Tokyo views. Those able to tear their eyes away from the urban cityscape are rewarded with the nature-inspired layers of Aikens cuisine, which playfully mixes influences from Japan and Britain. An opening highlight? Piglet belly, squid, pineapple and vanilla – a deliciously modern riff on old-school British classic gammon and pineapple. Danielle Demetriou

Anda KigaliAnda Kigali

Anda Kigali – Rwanda

Chef Treasure Makwanise garnered himself a following with his family-style meals, using home-grown herbs and vegetables, which he cooked at One&Only in Nyungwe in Rwanda. Now, travellers going to Rwanda needn’t travel as far to sample his food. The Zimbabwean-born chef is championing Kigali with his first fine-dining establishment, Anda, which was born out of his house during the pandemic. Set in a slick standalone house with a vegetable garden, he describes his food as plates approached with emotion. The result is dishes like tilapia sashimi with lemon sauce and crispy oats, and pineapple brûlée with mango and ginger sorbet (a signature), all based on locally available ingredients. He’s also tapping into forgotten Rwandan dishes like pumpkin leaves with peanut butter, which he workshopped with his Rwandan staff. Makwanise has been known to elevate food offerings in Rwanda by riffing old recipes, collaborating with a solid network of local producers and developing opportunities for local chefs and staff members, something he’s carried through in his new spot. MH

Takya – Riyadh

What is Saudi Arabian cuisine? That’s the question restaurateur Hadeel Almotawa set out to demystify for diners when she first opened Takya in Riyadh in 2019. Since then, her contemporary interpretations are helping drive the conversation: think a pumpkin date salad with fried goat cheese; shrimp muflag, a Saudi spin on paella; and a pavlova blalit with saffron cardamom butter sauce and lemon curd. It’s all presented with artful flair and alongside an ambitious mocktail menu (wash everything down with the Eternal Flame, a concoction of mixed berries, lemon, chilli water, and elderflower). Last December, Almotawa opened a new flagship in the glittering Bujairi Terrace dining hub on the outskirts of the city, alongside outposts of global favourites like Hakkasan and Angelina, and local brands like Sum + Things and Somewhere. SK