Tokyo’s Den named Asia’s Best Restaurant

Tokyo’s Den named Asia’s Best Restaurant

This year’s list of Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants includes a record 16 new entries

  • Led by chef-owner Zaiyu Hasegawa, Den is the first Japanese restaurant to claim the top spot since 2013
  • Japan counts 11 entries on the list while Thailand claims nine
  • Debuting on the list at Number 14, Villa Aida in Wakayama, Japan, claimed the Highest New Entry Award
  • Rising 14 places to Number 13, Ode in Tokyo won the Highest Climber Award
  • David Lai, of Hong Kong’s Neighborhood, claimed the peer-voted Chefs’ Choice Award
  • Odette in Singapore was this year’s recipient of the Gin Mare Art of Hospitality Award
  • Mume in Taipei won the Flor de Caña Sustainable Restaurant Award
  • Maira Yeo from Singapore was awarded the title of Asia’s Best Pastry Chef, sponsored by Valrhona
  • South Korean monk Jeong Kwan is this year’s deserving recipient of the prestigious Icon Award – Asia. 

Located in Tokyo, Japan, Den secured the coveted top spot at the Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2022 awards ceremony. The prestigious list was revealed at three simultaneous events across Asia, gathering chefs, restaurateurs, industry leaders and media in Bangkok, Macau and Tokyo. 

Now in its 10th year, the 2022 list welcomed a record 16 new entries. Japan counts 11 entries on the list, including four newcomers, while Thailand claims nine and Singapore has seven.

Den chef-owner Zaiyu Hasegawa

A Winning Night for Japan
In claiming the top spot, Den earns the dual titles of The Best Restaurant in Asia and – for a fifth successive year – The Best Restaurant in Japan.

Opened in 2007, Den reflects the personality of its chef-owner, Zaiyu Hasegawa. Taking a playful approach to kaiseki cuisine, Hasegawa and his team delight diners with creative presentations and surprising twists on traditional dishes.

After entering Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants list in 2016 at number 37, Den first appeared on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list the following year, rising to number 11 in 2021.

Japan is also represented by returning favourites Florilège (number 3), La Cime (number 6), Sazenka (number 11), Narisawa (number 15) and La Maison de la Nature Goh (number 36).

Japanese chefs and restaurants were recognised in several individual award categories. Rising 14 places to number 13, Ode in Tokyo is this year’s winner of the Highest Climber Award

Villa Aida in Wakayama makes a remarkable debut on the list at number 14 to earn the Highest New Entry Award. Chef-owner Kanji Kobayashi sources seasonal ingredients from his family farm to present dishes with a light Italian accent.

The team fom Été in Tokyo had two reasons to celebrate. As well as entering the list at number 42, the restaurant’s chef-owner Natsuko Shoji was this year’s recipient of the Asia’s Best Female Chef Award.

Other newcomers to the 2022 list include Sézanne (number 17) in Tokyo, led by chef Daniel Calvert, and the Italian-inspired Cenci (number 43) in Kyoto. 


Elsewhere in Asia…
Singapore’s Odette (number 8) earned two honours this year. Aside from being named The Best Restaurant in Singapore for a fifth consecutive year, the restaurant headed by Julien Royer was the 2022 recipient of the Gin Mare Art of Hospitality Award in recognition of operations director Steven Mason and his team’s combination of professionalism and warm individuality.

At number 21, Masque is The Best Restaurant in India, succeeding seven-time title holder Indian Accent (number 22), while newcomer Megu in New Delhi joins the ranking at number 49. Ministry of Crab (number35) in Colombo retains the title of The Best Restaurant in Sri Lanka.

Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants director of content William Drew said: “In its 10th year, Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants proudly continues the tradition of rewarding culinary excellence and guiding diners to the most unique gastronomic experiences across the continent.

“This year, Den has been crowned number one in Asia in recognition of its unique blend of tradition, innovation, flavour, hospitality and playfulness. We’re delighted to celebrate Zaiyu-san and the Den team, as well as showcasing all the restaurants on the 2022 list and the individual award winners, who inspire us with their creativity, resilience and skill.”

Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2022:

1 Den, Tokyo, Japan
2 Sorn, Bangkok, Thailand
3 Florilège, Tokyo, Japan
4 Le Du, Bangkok, Thailand
5 The Chairman, Hong Kong, China
6 La Cime, Osaka, Japan
7 Sühring, Bangkok, Thailand
8 Odette, Singapore
9 Neighborhood, Hong Kong, China
10 Nusara, Bangkok, Thailand
11 Sazenka, Tokyo, Japan
12 Fu He Hui, Shanghai, China
13 Ode, Tokyo, Japan
14 Villa Aida, Wakayama, Japan
15 Narisawa, Tokyo, Japan
16 Mingles, Seoul, South Korea
17 Sézanne, Tokyo Japan
18 Joo Ok, Seoul, South Korea
19 Ensue, Shenzhen, China
20 Meta, Singapore
21 Masque, Mumbai, India
22 Indian Accent, New Delhi, India
23 Les Amis, Singapore
24 Caprice, Hong Kong, China
25 Blue by Alain Ducasse, Bangkok, Thailand
26 7th Door, Seoul, South Korea
27 Mosu, Seoul, South Korea
28 Da Vittorio, Shanghai, China
29 Sushi Masato, Bangkok, Thailand
30 Onjium, Seoul, Shouth Korea
31 Samrub Samrub Thai, Bangkok, Thailand
32 Mono, Hong Kong, China
33 Gaa, Bangkok, Thailand
34 Wing, Hong Kong
35 Ministry of Crab, Colombo, Sri Lanka
36 La Maison de la Nature Goh, Kukuoka, Japan
37  Zén, Singapore
38 Logy, Taipei, Taiwan
39 Ultraviolet, Shanghai, China
40 Labyrinth, Singapore
41 Burnt Ends, Singapore
42 Été, Tokyo, Japan
43 Cenci, Kyoto, Japan
44 Cloudstreet, Singapore
45 JL Studio, Taiching, Taiwan
46 Raan Jay Fai, Bangkok, Thailand
47 Wing Lai Palace, Macau, China
48 8 ½ Otto e Mezza Bombana, Hong Kong, China
49 Megu, New Delhi, India
50 Dewakan, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

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