Pascal Aussignac, chef-patron of the Michelin-starred Club Gascon restaurant in London, last night picked up the Best Taste award at the launch of Taste of London.
At the annual food festival in Regent's Park, which opens to the public today, 40 of London's top restaurants are represented showcasing some of their signature dishes.
A panel of judges including US chef-restaurateur David Chang of the Momofuku restaurant group, food critics Tracey MacLeod (Independent), Zoe Williams (Sunday Telegraph), Richard Vines (Bloomberg) and food writer Joe Warwick, spent more than six hours tasting the restaurants' dishes.
Aussignac was the big winner, picking up the top prize for the second year in a row, with his dish of Marmite Royale with soldiers.
Second place went to Jean-Georges Vongerichten's Spice Market at the W hotel Leicester Square for its black pepper shrimp, with third place going to Vivek Singh's Cinnamon Soho signature dish of Bheja fry-lamb brains.
"I think I will have a very difficult time next year but I am a happy man tonight," Aussignac said after the awards ceremony.
"Marmite Royale with soldiers is a silky duck flan, cooked in the pot and topped with a mild Marmite paste. The dish came out of my desire to want to create dishes that French people would like when they come to England, incorporating some of the iconic ingredients that French people don't normally like. From Worcestershire sauce to HP sauce and Marmite, I want to bring typical English products and French tastes together. I think even people who normally hate Marmite will like this dish."
Next to the Best Taste awards were the Best Wine awards:
Aperitif wine award Cantine del Taburno Falanghina del Sannio 2011, Campania, Italy
â- Innovation in wine award Agee Taurasinus Greco Fi Tufo 2009, DOCG Campania, Italy
â- Best wine list Kensington Place
Taste of London runs until 25 June.
By Kerstin KÁ¼hn
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