Judging Panel

Our cosmopolitan, multicultural, globetrotting, gender-balanced panel of restaurant experts includes 37 different nationalities. We've brought together star chefs and restaurateurs; influential figures in old and new media; book publishers, filmmakers, food system scientists, activists and campaigners.  


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Emilia Terragni

Media United Kingdom

Emilia is a publisher at Phaidon Press.

Emma  Bengtsson

Chef United States

Chef Emma Bengtsson was named Executive Chef of Aquavit in 2014, after four years as Executive Pastry Chef. As Aquavit’s Executive Chef she has garnered three stars from The New York Times and two stars from Michelin, the second female chef in the U.S. accorded that honour. In fall 2018, Emma was named “Best Female Chef” by the Best Chef Awards. Prior to Aquavit, Emma worked at some of Sweden’s most renowned restaurants, including two-Michelin starred Edsbacka Krog, Restaurant Prinsen, and Operakällaren.

Esben Bang

Chef Norway

Esben Holmboe Bang (35) is head chef and co-owner of Norway’s groundbreaking three Michelin- starred restaurant Maaemo. He was born and raised in Copenhagen, but has spent most of his culinary career in Oslo. In 2016, Maaemo was awarded a third Michelin star, making Esben the youngest chef to currently hold Michelin’s highest accolade and the first ever in Norway to do so.

Frédéric Peneau

Restaurateur United Kingdom

Frederic Peneau is a restaurateur and chef based in Paris. In 2000 he launched the Burq cafe in Montmartre, followed by restaurant Chateaubriand with his partner Inaki Aizpitarte in 2005. In 2012 he collaborated with the esteemed architect Rem Koolhaas at restaurant Dauphin. Most recently he has opened 2012 Serge et le Phoque restaurant in Hong Kong, which achived a Michelin star and a sister restaurant in London in 2017.

Garima Arora

Chef Thailand

Garima Arora's culinary journey all began in her family's humble kitchen in Mumbai, India where she first worked as a journalist before moving to Paris to study cooking. For the last decade, Garima has worked alongside many world-renowned chefs and guided by her desire to serve contemporary and culturally relevant food, Garima opened her restaurant, Restaurant Gaa, in Bangkok. As she explored the jungle and tribal markets of Thailand together with its people, the connection between India and Thailand caught her attention. Her mission is to discover novel ways to transform local and seasonal ingredients into personal culinary experiences from India.

Gennady  Jozefavichus

Media Russia

Born in Kaliningrad in 1967, Gennady is a food and travel writer, columnist, freelance journalist and blogger. He regularly contributes for Conde Nast publications as well as Harper’s Bazaar, ELLE, Man’s Fitness, Prime Traveller, GEO, Robb Report and Magnum. Gennady has also published multiple travel books and is the presenter of FOODIE, a TV programme about food destinations.

Georges Desrues

Media Italy

Georges Desrues is a freelance journalist and photo reporter, born in Paris, raised in Vienna and living in Trieste.

Mauro Colagreco

Chef France

Mauro Colagreco established restaurant Mirazur in Menton, France, in 2006, after working with starred chefs such as Bernard Loiseau, Alain Ducasse and Alain Passard. His elegant, surprising and hearty cuisine was quickly awarded its first Michelin star, followed by a second one in 2012. Nominated Chevalier des Arts et Lettres and Chevalier de l’Ordre National du Merite by French Republic, Colagreco stays committed to bringing to light the best endemic products of the land around him.

Gert De Mangeleer

Restaurateur Belgium

Gert is the chef owner of 3 Michelin-starred restaurant Hertog Jan and tapas restaurant L.E.S.S, both situated in Brugge.

Heinz Reitbauer

Chef Austria

Heinz Reitbauer is chef-owner of Steirereck im Stadtpark, a restaurant opened by his parents a few months before his birth. The cooking style of Heinz Reitbauer reflects his respect and appreciation of raw ingredients and products. The appreciation for rare and forgotten varieties has led him to become active in the protest movement against the EU seed policy which seeks to limit the propagation and sale of all but the most standard fruits and vegetables. Currently Steirereck holds two Michelin stars and four toques from Gault Millau.

Ivan Brincat 

Media Belgium

A food lover from a very young age and a journalist from the age of 16, Ivan Brincat took to food writing in 2014, creating Food and Wine Gazette in his spare time. But he'd been on the lookout for places to eat while travelling way before this. His fine dining Eureka moment came at the legendary Gambero Rosso of chef Fulvio Pierangelini in San Vincenzo, Italy in 2006. He's been hungry ever since.

James Lowe

Chef United Kingdom

James is head chef and owner of Lyle's in Shoreditch, London. He is a huge champion of British produce and writes daily changing menus based on what he feels is best on any given day. The food is staunchly seasonal; bright, light and vibrant in the spring and summer and fortifying, comforting and wild game focussed in the winter. Lyle's won their first Michelin star 18 months after opening and placed 38th in the World's 50 Best Restaurant awards in 2018.

John Martin

Media United States

John Martin is the publisher and co-founder of MUNCHIES, VICE Media’s food & drink brand. Launched in 2014 as a joint-venture with with FremantleMedia, he leads the management and operations of the company and has expanded the digital brand into food products, merchandise, book publishing, festivals and events, kitchen appliances and most recently the world's first ever MUNCHIES Food hall. He lives in Brooklyn and is an investor in bars and hotel properties throughout New York.

Jp McMahon

Chef Ireland

Jp is a chef, restauranteur and author based in Galway, Ireland. He is also director of Food on the Edge Symposium.

Martina Liverani

Media Italy

Martina is an Italian based journalist and author, founder and Editor in Chief of Dispensa. She is passionate about food, travel, print magazines and preserving traditional skills in the digital age. She works and lives in a small town between the Adriatico sea and the Apennine Mountains.