| Brigitte Dusseau |
NEW YORK (AFP) – A record 73 restaurants have won stars in the 2015 New York City edition of the prestigious Michelin guide, 14 of them across the river in Brooklyn and Queens.
There are six restaurants – compared to seven last year – in the guide’s highest three-star rating, earning the description of “exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey.”
French restaurant Daniel run by chef Daniel Boulud lost the third star he won in 2010 and was downgraded to the two-star category defined as “excellent cuisine” and “worth a detour.”
There were nine restaurants in the two-star category, compared to five last year, and three of them new entries: the minimalist “Blanca” in Brooklyn run by chef Carlos Mirachi; Ichimura in TriBeCa and Aquavit in Midtown East.
Although New York has fewer Michelin stars than Tokyo, Paris or even Kyoto, America’s largest city, and food mad to boot, has never had so many one-star restaurants: 58 up from 55 in 2014.
An astonishing 17 of them were debut entries.
The guide gave special plaudits to The River Cafe in Brooklyn, which was forced to close after 2012 super storm Hurricane Sandy, but which staged a remarkable comeback to retake its Michelin star.
In all, 20 restaurants won a star this year, either entering the one-star category or moving up to two stars, and eight of them were in Brooklyn and three in Queens.
“That shows the dynamic and really interesting side of the culinary scene in boroughs other than Manhattan,” Michael Ellis, the international director of the annual guides issued by the French tire company, told AFP.
Brooklyn, which has seen phenomenal growth in the last decade to become an increasing cultural centre in New York, now has one three-star, one two-star and eight one-star restaurants.
Queens has four one-star restaurants.
“New York remains one of the most dynamic, most creative and most interesting cities,” in the world, said Ellis, praising the emergency of young chefs with their own signature taste who produce a “very personal” cuisine made with exceptional produce.
Reflecting its demographics – 36 per cent of New York City residents were born overseas – the city is also particularly unique in having so many different cuisines.
In the 2015 guide, 60 different types of food are represented, including Burmese, Cajun, Austrian, Peruvian, Polish and Tibetan.
Of the six three-star restaurants, two are French establishments – Jean Georges run by Jean-Georges Vongerichten and Le Bernardin run by Eric Ripert.
The others are Japanese restaurant Masa run by Masa Takayama, Thomas Keller’s Californian cuisine at Per Se, Eleven Madison Park run by Swiss chef Daniel Humm and the Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare run by Cesar Ramirez.
In all, 874 restaurants of the more than 20,000 on offer in New York get a mention in the guide, the 10th edition for New York. Seventy-three got stars compared to 67 in 2014.
In addition to the starred establishments, 126 were highlighted as Bib Gourmand, which signifies good eating at good value.
Menus in this category offer two dishes and a glass of wine for a maximum of $40, excluding tax and service.
The 2015 guide also includes dozens of restaurants where diners despairing of the city’s high prices can eat for less than $25.
Michelin guides to San Francisco and Chicago are to be published later this year. Inspectors work anonymously and have a reputation for independence.