Nearly 95 years after first launching, the Michelin guide is a much sought after list to make for those in the restaurant industry. It’s one of the highest honors a dining establishment can get. These restaurants are located around the world (23 countries!) and 120 anonymous inspectors travel and eat meals in 240 restaurants each every single year.
What is a Michelin rating?
A Michelin rating is made up of three stars, compared to the normal five stars the hospitality industry uses for other rating systems. They also have two other categories of recognition, including more restaurants in the guides.
The Michelin Plate is the least prestigious and newest category. It is awarded to restaurants with quality food.
The Bib Gourmand started in 1955, measuring quality food at a value price – however this value price is not always a value to many people. The meals in this category must include two courses, wine and dessert without costing more than $40 per person.
Now, for the stars:
- One star: a very good restaurant with consistently good food
- Two stars: a restaurant with skillfully prepared dishes and outstanding overall quality
- Three stars: these restaurants have exceptional cuisine and distinctive dishes – the guide lists these as restaurants worth travelling for
Where are the Michelin rated restaurants in the U.S.?
There are 159 restaurants in the U.S. with Michelin stars. These restaurants are scattered from coast to coast, and if one were to drive to each place in the guide, it would take about 3,426 miles over five months.
You’ll find Michelin rated restaurants in New York, Maryland, California, Illinois and Washington, D.C. Cuisine ranges from Japanese to French to seafood to local, seasonal options.
Want to try some exceptional food on your next trip? Take a pick from this list of three star restaurants, or check out the Michelin Guide for the full list. Be sure to make a reservation so you won’t be disappointed by a long wait or inability to get a table.
Benu, California: A Korean restaurant with a variety of tasting options in seafood, vegetables, meat and sweets.
Eleven Madison Park, New York: The menu at this restaurant changes seasonally based on what is available fresh and locally.
Grace, Illinois: Fresh meat and fish are paired with local vegetables at Grace in Chicago.
Masa, New York: The chef is inspired by his time in Japan so he focuses on the beauty of eating – get a full senses experience at Masa.
Quince, California: Sourced with local produce, this restaurants features both Italian and French cuisine.
The Inn at Little Washington, Washington, D.C.: One of the most elegant dining experiences in D.C., this restaurant features diverse tasting menus.
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