Have you ever eaten at a Michelin restaurant? This prestigious award is reserved only for the best of the best in the industry. Do you know how it works?
Michelin stars are awarded by the same company that makes tires. Yep. In the early 1900s, the tire company saw a sales decrease in France. To fix this, they came up with a clever idea: to launch a guide to encourage road tripping. Shortly after that, the company started sending out anonymous restaurant reviewers to try new restaurants.
Nowadays, anonymous reviewers form the basis of Michelin stars awards. These people are passionate about good food and great memories: being anonymous prevents them from carrying a notebook, so the written report of the dining experience has to be done after the fact. That’s some great recall!
After the initial report, the reviewers get together and decide to give a restaurant one, two or three stars (or none). These stars are coveted mainly because most restaurants receive no stars. In fact, in all of New York, the Michelin guide awarded ratings to only 78 restaurants in 2018, just one more restaurant than in 2017.
Although prestigious, Michelin stars only take into account the food, not the customer service, the ambiance or parking availability. Michelin stars have been criticized as too French-biased, as well as preferring “snobby or formal dining style”. If you’ve never dined at a Michelin restaurant and are curious about it all, here’s everything you need to know about it!