The Michelin Red Guide originates from a 1900 book by The Michelin Tyre Company that listed motorist-friendly information, such as garages, hotels and restaurants. The restaurant recommendations proved so popular that soon anonymous inspectors were rating establishments.
In 1926, the 'Michelin Star' was born; today's three star system was introduced in the 1930s. There is now The Michelin Red Guide for cities and countries across the globe, from London to Tokyo.
What a Star Means...
The judges' criteria include: quality of the produce; mastery of flavour and cooking; 'personality' of the cuisine; value for money; consistency between visits. Restaurants are judged only by 'what is on the plate', rather than on ambience, interior design or level of service.
* A very
good restaurant in its category
** Excellent cooking and worth a detour
*** Exceptional cuisine and worth the journey
Achieving a Michelin Star (or three) is the pinnacle of many chefs' careers. After being given this ultimate accolade, the establishment is firmly on the gastronomic map.