The Reasons Why Canadian Restaurants aren’t Recognized Internationally

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The World’s 50 Best Restaurants List was just released; and unsurprisingly no Canadian restaurant made that list again! There have only been 2 Canadian restaurants that have managed to break into that list, which was Michael Stadtländer’s Eigensinn Farm, and Susur Lee’s Susur. However, that was in 2002, and no Canadian restaurant has even come close to breaking into the list ever since.

The list is created by British Magazine Restaurant, which has votes from around 1,000 anonymous international restaurant industry veterans. This isn’t your average top 50 list; it has the power to turn chefs into celebrities, and turn unknown restaurants into world-class destinations. Restaurants that manage to get into the list have reservations booked for months in advance, as foodies from all over the world come to dine at these world-class destinations.

The sad news is that this is the 14th consecutive year that no Canadian restaurant has managed to break into it, and it isn’t just this list, no Canadian restaurant has snuck into the world’s 51 – 100 best restaurants list as well! In fact, the Michelin Guide hasn’t ever visited Canada, particularly because there aren’t high quality restaurants here that are worth Michelin’s time.

Ouch! That lack of international recognition is definitely hitting home, but it is Canadians themselves, who are to blame for this. That is because Canadian restaurants are made for Canadians with not enough emphasis placed on fine dining in the country.

The vast majority of Canadians prefer truck food, street food, and cheap eats over fine dining, since there are so many delicious and affordable meal options around. The common thinking is that if you can enjoy a fried chicken sandwich for $7, then why would you ever consider spending $300 on lunch?

But therein lies the problem, as Canadians need to make an effort to adopt the global culinary culture, and fork out the big bucks for fine dining, because they value the work of the chef and want to support the development of their country’s culinary identity. Canadians will also have to do the same.