‘Such brilliant news! We have arrived in international gourmet paradise!’, said a stunned and happy Simon Taxacher at the presentation of the Gault&Millau 2020 guide at the Park Hyatt in Vienna on Wednesday, 20 November 2019. With a new rating of 5 toques, 19 points for Simon Taxacher, Gault&Millau Austria not only makes comparison possible across international editions – the new ranking also promotes him straight to the international realm of gourmet gods. ‘I would like to thank the assessors, our team, our guests, partners and friends – everyone who has supported and believed in us! You are fantastic! We made it here together! It’s incredible, just terrific!’
For the past six years, Simon Taxacher has headed Tyrol’s cooking elite with the former maximum of 4 toques. Gault&Millau 2020 Austria’s new rating system follows the French model and paves the way for international comparability. This is a major step in the evolution of the hotly-contested gourmet scene: for the restaurant guide itself, which has been gaining in international importance, but above all for the restaurants and chefs who were sidelined internationally for lack of ranking comparability.
For the past forty years, Gault&Millau Austria has only ever been able to award between one and four toques, and between 13 and a maximum of 20 – never as yet allocated – points. With the guide’s 2020 edition, the point and toque system has undergone a radical change, and now follows the Gault&Millau France model. As well as heightening anticipation in advance of the 2020 guide’s publication, the new rating system also equalises international comparability. ‘In order to do justice to this international and increasingly strong brand, we licensees need to come together and apply the same system’, says Gault&Millau Austria’s publisher Karl Hohenlohe. The new 5-toque system also expands the points range, with entry into the league of toques now starting at 11 points. Restaurants that were previously awarded 13 points will now carry an 11-point rating. ‘The expanded points and toque system provide the opportunity to award ratings that are even more precise and nuanced. This seems particularly useful for two and three-toque restaurants, as it will offer diners much more clarity than before,’ says editor-in-chief Martina Hohenlohe.
The Gault&Millau restaurant guide was founded in 1969 by journalists Henri Gault and Christian Millau, who in 1973 championed contemporary cuisine with the slogan ‘Vive la nouvelle cuisine française’. The guide’s first German edition was published in 1983. Gault&Millau Austria’s publishers are Martina and Karl Hohenlohe. Gault&Millau ratings are modelled on the French school grading system on a scale from 0 to 20 points. True to the spirit of the founders Gault and Millau, the highest score of 20 has never been awarded in Austria, because ‘perfection is God’s preserve and beyond the limitations of a human being’. The judging is conducted anonymously by seasoned gourmets whose remit it is to judge objectively, correctly and fairly in a way that is comprehensible and amusing.
Austria’s award-winning chef Simon Taxacher’s temple of gourmet cuisine is located in the exclusive, 5-star Hotel Restaurant Spa Rosengarten in Kirchberg-Kitzbühel. In addition to Restaurant Simon Taxacher’s 5-toque cuisine, the new ALPINE ELEMENTS® SPA cuisine served in the hotel’s other Gault&Millau toque-winning eatery – the Bistro-Restaurant Rosengarten – and the new indoor pool, gym and signature SPA treatments offer exclusive pleasures. Located in the heart of Kitzbühel Alps, the Rosengarten also provides an ideal base for active holiday-makers.