Michelin stars are undoubtedly the most honored award within the culinary industry and getting three Michelin stars is considered the highest achievement one can make. And therefore, chefs all over the world dedicate their lives to earn at least one star as a symbol of their excellence.
The Michelin’s tyre company star-rating system criteria, which was established in 1933, consists of one, two or three stars. The rating model is based on the reviews of anonymous specially trained Michelin reviewers who visit countless restaurants around the globe to sample the very best; and not on outside reviews. The amount of stars a restaurant can receive is based on five criteria; quality of ingredients, mastery of flavor and cooking techniques, the personality of the chef in his cuisine, value of money and consistency between visits.
Three stars are awarded to restaurants serving “exceptional cuisine” that is “worth a special journey” to visit. Therefore, recently the Michelin tyre company revealed 15 restaurants which they regard as having “exceptional cuisine”
Diners sit arrayed around a counter and the chefs in full view, prepare them a multi-course tasting menu of French-Japanese fusion cuisine. When Brooklyn Fare earned its third star a Michelin inspector told the New York Times “I don’t believe there is anything quite like it in the world, though you might see the closest parallels in Tokyo or Kyoto. If you took the cuisine out of the setting it would compare favorably with other three stars.”
Drawing on flavors from around the world, one course may be a chicken thigh with Mexican spices, while a rare Japanese fish may be another. The restaurant is a showcase of advanced technique where food is dehydrated, subjected to liquid nitrogen, and you may even be fed an edible balloon.
Per se, New York City
As Thomas Keller prepared to bring his Francophile cooking to New York after much success with the French Laundry out in Napa, he was asked how his new restaurant would compare to the one that had established him as an iconic American chef. He’d respond, “It’s not the French Laundry, per se.” The name stuck. Like the French Laundry, Per Se serves a nine-course menu, replete with his take on modern French.
This is one of the finest seafood restaurants in America. The menu is divided into those preparations of “Almost Raw” where geoduck sashimi is dressed with ginger-ponzu. Then there’s “Barely Touched” where yellowfin tuna and langoustines get the lightest sear. And there’s the “Lightly Cooked,” where you may find pan-roasted monkfish with squid ink fideos and a chorizo emulsion.
French Laundry, Yountville, CA
Rooted in his love of French food and technique, the nine-course menu features dishes like a cauliflower velouté with toasted Marcona almonds, john dory with creamed black trumpet mushrooms, squab with sunchokes, and venison with caramelized Brussels sprouts.
Atelier Crenn, San Francisco
Displays a soulful, artistic take on modern French fare. The menu exhibits a wonderful balance of grace, artistry, technical ability and taste.
Benu, San Francisco
Chef Corey Lee has merged flavors from Korea, China, and Japan with techniques he honed as the French Laundry’s chef de cuisine for four years. The result is a lauded tasting menu that will feature dishes like an oyster with pork belly and kimchi; or smoked quail, lilies, and fermented pepper.
Offers a serene presence, serving a beautifully crafted menu that honors chef Humm’s quest for elegance and simplicity. Rooted in his French training, the restaurant graduated to three stars in 2012 and in 2017 topped the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list.
Manresa, Los Gatos, CA
This restaurant offers vegetable-centered contemporary California cuisine. Known for dishes like Tidal Pool, a rich broth that poaches a raw slice of foie gras and is accompanied by uni, butter clams, mussels, oyster, pickled kombu, toasted nori, and shitake mushrooms.
Masa, New York City
Offers one of the most expensive tasting menus in America including omakase sushi.
The Inn at Little Washington, Washington, VA
The self-taught chef O’Connell pioneered American farm-to-table cooking while leaning on modern French technique that the Gallic food guide especially loves. “Over several visits, our inspectors were most impressed by the balance of creative, chef-driven cuisine and impeccable technique from chef O’Connell,” said Michael Ellis, the Michelin Guide’s director when he bestowed the honor earlier this year.
Saison, San Francisco
Serves a nightly 18-course menu of modern American cuisine.
Quince, San Francisco
Chef Michael Tusk has combined his love of Northern Italian cuisine with his surrounds in Northern California, to evolve classics like tortellini into modern American fare. Tusk has created a partnership with Fresh Run Farm an early adopter of organic farming to grow heirloom fruits, vegetables, and flowers exclusively for the chef.
The restaurant, located at the Meadowood Resort in St. Helena, has become a leader in modern American cuisine, driven by terroir and produce of the Napa Valley.
Single Thread, Healdsburg, CA
From the inn above the restaurant to the farm to the 11-course tasting menu, the restaurant creates an immersive and comprehensive experience.
Have you tried your best cuisine yet?
Are the rating criteria transparent and fair?