Gault&Millau: Rabanel, chef of the year

Two years ago Gault&Millau awarded Pascal Barbot with Chef of the Year, last year the prize went to Jean-François Piège and in the 2008 edition, which has just hit the stands, the decoration has been given to Rabanel and his restaurant “L’Atelier de Jean-Luc Rabanel” (17/20), in Arles. We believe not only that the guide has hit the nail on the head in various instances in the past (“Astrance” and “Les Ambassadeurs” are both rated a 9/10 in, but on this occasion as well. And they have done it by placing their belief in an unknown, something that demonstrates insight and courage in a large-scale gastronomic critic, Patricia Alexandra, who since taking over the management of the publication has done a truly admirable job of revitalizing the guide, and has also put her faith in the renovation of French cuisine by backing new talents.
We have stated in the past, in this very guide, that Jean-Luc Rabanel practices the most innovative vegetable cuisine in the world. Our warmest congratulations on this most well deserved honor.
Gault&Millau and Patricia Alexandra have appropriately given the “Revelation of the Year” award to Cédric Béchade of “L’Auberge Basque”(15/20), in Saint Pée sur Nivelle. Others that have risen in ranking this year: Emmanuel Renaut “Flocons de Sel” (17/20), Mauro Colagreco “Mirazur” (17/20) and Alexandre Bourdas “Sa.Qua.Na” (16/20). All these, with the exception of Barbot, who has already been included in three editions, plus Nicolas Magie “La Cape” (16/20) and Lionel Lévy “Une Table, Au Sud” (15/20), comprise the French ambassadors that will be present at the IX Congress of; they will also be joined by Paul Pairet of “Jade On 36”, located in Shanghai.
Other significant changes in the Gault&Millau guide: “Passédat-Le Petit Nice”, in Marseille and “Pic”, in Valence, both climb to 18/20. Alain Ducasse au Plaza Athénée in Paris drops to 18/20.