The new 2011 Bay Area Michelin Guide arrives promptly tomorrow morning, and just like the Oscar nominations, chefs will be awoken to phone calls from Jean-Luc Naret himself (or their nimble-fingered press agents) telling them their new starry status. French chefs have been known to kill themselves over these ratings (literally), but in America we’re only just getting used to this high-standard system that bases ratings on food alone, with three stars — traditionally signifying that a place is “worth a special trip” — being the rare achievement only a small handful of American chefs have achieved. We’ve been placing bets on Manresa to be next in line for a three-star rating, and the expansion of the three-star list in the Tokyo guide this year makes us think perhaps our list could grow beyond just one (French Laundry) as well.
Coi, Meadowood, and Cyrus are also distinct possibilities for promotion, and as the Scoop also notes, this year’s crop of well reviewed, buzz-happy openers like Frances and Prospect are waiting with bated breath to hear if they won the star lottery. And will Quince earn back its second star? Will Ubuntu hold on to theirs without Jeremy Fox? Will Saison earn one despite only becoming a full-time restaurant this summer? Stay tuned.
Six plotlines to follow for the upcoming Bay Area Michelin Guide [Scoop]
Earlier: Café Des Amis, Sons & Daughters Among Michelin’s 2011 Bib Gourmand Picks [Grub Street]
Michelin: Lack of Consistency Lost Mina His Star [Grub Street - ‘09]