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Monday, 3 November 2008

ASIA’S FIRST, TRULY INDEPENDENT RESTAURANT GUIDE—THE MIELE GUIDE—LAUNCHES AT STAR-STUDDED GALA DINNER

(Singapore — 3 November, 2008) — The inaugural edition of The Miele Guide, Asia’s first truly independent and authoritative restaurant guide was officially launched at a star-studded dinner held in Singapore on October 31, 2008. The 2008/2009 edition of this new annual guide is now available at major bookstores throughout Asia and Australia. It is also available via The Miele Guide’s website (mieleguide.com) and Amazon.com.

Written by expert food lovers who know and love Asia, The Miele Guide is the first restaurant guide to measure the best restaurants in the region by Asian standards. The Miele Guide conducted four rounds of selection and judging to arrive at the final list of 320 restaurants featured in the 2008/2009 edition. The first was a shortlist of “best restaurants” generated by 84 of the region’s top food writers and restaurant critics. With support from Visa, polling was then conducted amongst first the public then a jury of 1,500 respected foodies, journalists and F&B professionals. Finally, The Miele Guide team dined incognito at the top-ranked restaurants to confirm the guide’s Top 20 list.

Along with the launch of the inaugural edition of The Miele Guide, the much anticipated first-ever ranked list of Asia’s Top 20 Restaurants was unveiled at The Miele Guide Dinner yesterday. The exclusive red carpet event, held at the Grand Hyatt Singapore, was attended by approximately 350 guests, comprising of a veritable who’s who of Asia’s F&B scene. At this extraordinary gathering of Asia's most celebrated chefs and restaurateurs plus regional and international food critics and journalists, the Top 20 Restaurants and the personalities behind them received The Miele Guide awards and most importantly, the recognition that they so richly deserve.

The Miele Guide Dinner, foremost a celebration of the culinary talents in Asia, featured excellent food and wine. Three guest chefs—Chef Li Shu Tim of One Harbour Road at Grand Hyatt Hong Kong, Chef Sufian Zain of Iggy’s in Singapore and Chef Chris Salans of Mozaic restaurant in Bali specially prepared the main courses for the evening. Iggy’s is the top ranked restaurant in Asia while Mozaic restaurant ranks fifth this year.

Pauline Ooi, The Miele Guide’s Associate Publisher, says, “We have been very much looking forward to the launch of The Miele Guide. The dinner was an exciting night honouring Asia’s brightest culinary stars. We’re thrilled that many of the region’s culinary luminaries were in attendance. The Miele Guide Dinner, we hope, will become the must-attend event for the region’s best chefs and restaurateurs year after year.”

The Miele Guide-At-Sunrice scholarships, offered under the newly created The Miele Guide Culinary Scholarship Programme, were awarded to two deserving young talents at the red carpet event as well. The two recipients will have the opportunity to attend the Diploma in Culinary Craft and Service Excellence (DCCSE) course at the renowned At-Sunrice Globalchef Academy (At-Sunrice).

Starting with this first edition, The Miele Guide will annually publish a list of Asia’s 20 best restaurants. These restaurants will be numerically ranked and profiled in-depth. In addition, the inaugural 2008/2009 edition lists the other 300 best restaurants from across the region, categorised by country, city and cuisine. This year, restaurants in 16 Asian countries were evaluated—Brunei, Cambodia, China (including Hong Kong and Macau), India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.

“The overarching goal of The Miele Guide is to help the restaurant industry in Asia grow. We hope that by recognising Asia’s best, the industry will continue to flourish and develop. It is also our hope to create awareness internationally that we have amazing dining here in Asia,” says Tan Su-Lyn, Director of Ate Media, the Singapore-based media firm publishing the guide, and one of Southeast Asia’s most established food writers. “We aim for The Miele Guide to become established as the most credible, independent and respected system through which restaurants are evaluated across Asia,” she adds.

“We are proud to be part of this landmark move to recognise the Asian dining scene,” Mario Miranda, Managing Director of Miele Pte Ltd says. “Miele’s sponsorship of The Miele Guide reflects our dedication to helping to encourage and support the food and wine industry in this region. We are equally committed to promoting the enjoyment and understanding of good food among the people of this diverse region. We realise that the same customers who look for the very best in their kitchens also expect the very best when they dine out. Thus, it is natural for Miele to encourage a publication that seeks to recognise Asian chefs, restaurateurs and restaurants that are just as committed as we are to making their customers’ lives forever better.”

“There are a lot of hidden talents when it comes to restaurants in Asia. The Miele Guide is a great tool to find and expose them to the world,” Andreas Stalder, Senior Vice President—Product and Brand Development, Asia Pacific of Hyatt Hotels and Resorts, the official hotel of The Miele Guide, says.

Manoj Adlakha, Head of Visa’s Premium Products in Asia Pacific says, “Visa is proud to be the official credit card of the Miele Guide, an authoritative guide which will help our cardholders savour the best cuisines across Asia. Whether it is in dining or other pursuits and experience such as travel and golf, we are committed to delivering memorable experiences that complement our cardholders’ lifestyles. Visa Infinite and Signature cardholders will enjoy benefits such as preferential reservations and customised menus when they dine at selected restaurants featured in the Miele Guide.”

Alan Lammin, Publishing Director of TIME Asia says, “The partnership between TIME and The Miele Guide brings together two premium brands to jointly advocate dining excellence in Asia’s major cities, and position them as vibrant tourism and business hubs. Paying tribute to these fine dining establishments celebrates not only Asia’s growing influence in the global arena, but also acknowledges the appreciation for the finer things in life with readers of both TIME and The Miele Guide. TIME is proud to be a partner of The Miele Guide, and we look forward to revealing a new level of culinary excellence in Asia and providing a trusted lifestyle guide.” TIME is the official magazine of The Miele Guide.

To mark the launch of the Guide, prizes are being given out to members of the dining public who cast their votes during the online public polling period. Three lucky winners each won an all-expenses paid meal at the top ranked restaurant in Singapore, Hong Kong or Tokyo, plus a stay in the respective Grand Hyatt hotel in each city. Winners are being notified via email.

The Miele Guide is published by Ate Media Pte Ltd and sponsored by Miele, a German manufacturer of premium and innovative cooking appliances for the home. While a naming sponsor of the Guide, Miele did not exert any influence over the selection and judging process that determined which restaurants appear in The Miele Guide.

Further underlining its independence, neither the Guide nor its contributors accepted any advertising, sponsorship or free meals from any of the restaurants reviewed.

The Miele Guide Dinner was supported by Grand Hyatt Singapore, IE Singapore, At-Sunrice, FIJI Artesian Water, Flow Cocktail, Indoguna, Pernod Ricard, Sopexa, TWG Tea and Zwiesel.

The slim, elegant and affordable Guide, which will retail at US$15, will be for every traveller, foodie and business person looking to dine in Asia.

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