Spain’s El Celler De Can Roca edged past Denmark’s Noma and Italy’s Osteria Francescana to be named the world’s best restaurant on Monday in a ceremony in London.

It’s been a long time coming for the Girona restaurant in the northeast of Catalona, Spain, having spent the last two years fixed at the No. 2 position on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list and the last seven “waiting in the wings” for its turn at the spotlight.

Steered by Roca brothers —  Joan, the chef or “architect of taste”; Jordi, the pastry chef; and Josep, the sommelier — the restaurant has built a steady and faithful fan base for its “freestyle” cooking, avant-garde techniques, and innovative ideas.

But Monday’s new title is sure to do for El Celler de Can Roca what it did previously for a small restaurant in Copenhagen years ago, and turn it into a household name for even the tepid food-lover.

Since owning the No. 1 spot three years running, Noma chef René Redzepi, for instance, has graced the cover of mainstream news magazine “Time.”

Spanish chef Ferran Adrià of now-closed El Bulli, likewise garnered near mythical status after snapping up the title of world’s best restaurant five times, inspiring a handful of books and big-budget movies.

Meanwhile, if the winners of the Best Restaurants awards are known for pushing the culinary envelope and challenging diners’ concepts of traditional dining, the Roca brothers’ award is richly deserved.

Whether it be playing with essential oils to develop a menu, trying to mimic the texture and bubbles of Cava in an oyster dish, or bottling the memories of childhood in a milky, lemon muffin perfume, the restaurant has never been content to rest on its three Michelin-starred laurels. Restaurant cuisine is described as ‘freestyle cooking’ that hinges on Catalan dishes using cutting-edge techniques.

El Celler de Can Roca

Here’s are the Top 50 restaurants in the world according to a panel of 900 food critics, chefs, restaurateurs and “gastronomes” tapped into the food scene:

1 El Celler de Can Roca – Girona, Spain
2 Noma – Copenhagen, Denmark
3 Osteria Francescana – Modena, Italy
4 Mugaritz – San Sebastián, Spain
5 Eleven Madison Park – New York, USA
6 D.O.M. – São Paulo, Brazil
7 Dinner by Heston Blumenthal – London, UK
8 Arzak – San Sebastián, Spain
9 Steirereck – Vienna, Austria
10 Vendôme – Bergisch Gladbach, Germany
11 Per Se – New York, USA
12 Frantzén/Lindeberg – Stockholm, Sweden
13 The Ledbury – London, UK
14 Astrid y Gastón – Lima, Peru
15 Alinea – Chicago, USA
16 L’Arpège – Paris, France
17 Pujol – Mexico City, Mexico
18 Le Chateaubriand – Paris, France
19 Le Bernardin – New York, USA
20 Narisawa – Tokyo, Japan
21 Attica – Melbourne, Australia – NEW ENTRY
22 Nihonryori RyuGin – Tokyo, Japan
23 L’Astrance – Paris, France
24 L’Atelier Saint-Germain de Joël Robuchon – Paris, France
25 Hof Van Cleve – Kruishoutem, Belgium
26 Quique Dacosta – Dénia, Spain
27 Le Calandre – Rubano, Italy
28 Mirazur – Menton, France
29 Daniel – New York, USA
30 Aqua – Wolfsburg, Germany
31 Biko – Mexico City, Mexico
32 Nahm – Bangkok, Thailand
33 The Fat Duck – Bray, UK
34 Fäviken – Järpen, Sweden
35 Oud Sluis – Sluis, Netherlands
36 Amber – Hong Kong, China
37 Vila Joya – Albufeira, Portugal
38 Restaurant Andre – Singapore – NEW ENTRY
39 8 1/2 Otto E Mezzo Bombana – Hong Kong, China  – NEW ENTRY
40 Combal.Zero – Rivoli, Italy
41 Piazza Duomo – Alba, Italy
42 Schloss Schauenstein – Fürstenau, Switzerland
43 Mr & Mrs Bund – Shanghai, China – NEW ENTRY
44 Asador Etxebarri – Atxondo, Spain
45 Geranium – Copenhagen, Denmark
46 Mani – São Paulo, Brazil
47 The French Laundry – Yountville, USA
48 Quay – Sydney, Australia
49 Septime – Paris, France – NEW ENTRY
50 Central – Lima, Peru – NEW ENTRY

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