New York - Wine lovers everywhere, it’s that time of the year to update your wine destination list! Wine Spectator has released the winners of the 2018 Restaurant Awards, which honors the world’s best restaurants for wine. This year, the Restaurant Awards program honors 3,759 dining destinations from all 50 states in the U.S. and more than 75 countries internationally.
The Restaurant Awards began in 1981, and there are three levels: the Award of Excellence, the Best of Award of Excellence and the Grand Award, with 2,453; 1,215; and 91 winners this year in each respective category. Seven of the Grand Award winners—Ai Fiori in New York City, Barolo Grill in Denver, Le Coureur Des Bois in Beloeil, Quebec, Canada, Madera in Menlo Park, California, Metropolitan Grill in Seattle, Restaurant Mosaic in Pretoria, South Africa and Sistina in New York City—are first timers.
“This year’s class of restaurants is one of the most impressive and innovative ever,” said Marvin R. Shanken, Editor and Publisher, Wine Spectator. “Their wine lists keep improving, because wine lovers are eager to explore and learn. The goal of our Restaurant Awards is to support restaurant wine programs and bring them to diners’ attention through our outreach through print, digital and social media. Wine Spectator salutes every restaurant honored in the 2018 Restaurant Awards.”
All winners are profiled at Restaurants.WineSpectator.com and in the Restaurant Awards app. The app, available free on the App store, allows iPhone and iPad users to easily find nearby award-winning restaurants, with maps, plus helpful information about cuisine, wine and pricing.
The Award of Excellence recognizes restaurants whose wine lists feature a well-chosen assortment of quality producers. Best of Award of Excellence recipients offer more extensive selections with significant vintage depth and excellent breadth across multiple regions.
The Grand Award is the program’s highest honor. This elite group comprises the world’s best wine programs, which deliver serious breadth of top producers, outstanding depth in mature vantages, excellent harmony with the menu and superior presentation. Wine Spectator carefully assesses each Grand Award candidate, including rigorous independent, on-site inspections of the wine program, cellar, service, ambiance and cuisine of the restaurant.
The full list of award winners is available in print in Wine Spectator’s August issue, on newsstands July 17. Follow the Restaurant Awards on Twitter and Instagram, with hashtag #WSRestaurantAward.