The most coveted award is what obtaining a star means to chefs throughout the world. Once the chef earns one Michelin star for his or her restaurant there is the challenge to obtain two Michelin stars, then three Michelin stars! When a restaurant receives it’s first star it means it is “a very good restaurant”, the second Michelin star “worth a detour” and the third Michelin star “exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey”. For those of us who love to travel, “a special journey” or “worth a detour” speaks to us in a language we understand. There are Michelin Stars Around the World and dining at a Michelin star restaurant is an experience everyone should have at least once in their lives. You won’t regret it!
Kevin and I love to experience Michelin star restaurants when we are traveling and have never been disappointed, but rather it at times has been the highlight of a trip. In Paris we experienced Antoine a two star Michelin restaurant, the Waldorf Astoria Amsterdams, Librije’s Zusje is also a 2 star restaurant. In Germany Brenners Park Restaurant (read more) and on Lake Como the Bellagio hotel The Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni, MISTRAL.
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MICHELIN STARRED RESTAURANTS IN ASIA
Hawker Chan in Singapore
Address: 78 Smith St, Singapore 058972
Chef: Chan Hong Meng
Want to try one of the cheapest Michelin star restaurants? Visit Hawker Chan in Singapore. There are three locations in Singapore and the original one is in Chinatown. Otherwise, try the food at other worldwide locations such as in the Philippines, Taiwan, and Australia.
Hawker Chan is a casual restaurant (or hawker stall if you visit the location) that serves Cantonese style food cooked by the owner/chef, Chan Hon Meng. Prepare for the long wait out the door as visitors try the famous soy sauce chicken dish and roasted pork. Dishes are affordable at $4-5 SGD ($2.90-$3.70 USD).
We tried the recommended soy sauce chicken with rice and the BBQ pork with rice. Both were delicious. The soy sauce chicken was one of the best that we’ve eaten as it was moist and had good flavor. The side dish of the soybeans also complemented the dish. The BBQ pork also had the perfect amount of char siu glaze and not a lot of fat in the pork pieces.
If you’re lucky, you may see the owner working in the kitchen. During our visit, we saw him working hard with chopping up chicken to serve the customers. This restaurant was quite the experience and a must-try in Singapore.
Contribution by: Jackie & Justin at Life of Doing
Tim Ho Wan in Hong Kong
Address: Flat 8, Ground Floor, Phase 2, Tsui Yuen Mansion, 2-20 Kwong Wa St,
Chef: Mak Kwai Pui
For a Michelin-starred restaurant, the original Tim Ho Wan, located in the Mong Kok neighborhood of Hong Kong, is humble in appearance. Simple, uncovered tables are packed in the small space to accommodate the large line of people waiting outside. As guests are seated they fill-out the order forms provided and hand them to the waitresses rushing around to deliver large amounts of dim sum in as little time as possible.
This may sound like an odd choice of restaurant for a Michelin star until baskets of steaming dim sum arrive on your table. There’s a reason that Michelin has been awarding this place a star for nine consecutive years–this is seriously good food! The prawn and pork dumplings are delicious and so are the pork spareribs in black bean sauce, but the star of the show is the baked pork bun. The kitchen can barely keep up with the number of orders for this specialty. Instead of the more typical steamed pork buns that look like small pillows, this one is baked and the result is savory pork inside a slightly sweet, golden brown crust.
The prices at Tim Ho Wan are very reasonable. We ordered four different dishes and tea and our bill was around 20 USD. But this is a unique dining experience, so a few tips are in order. Order everything up front. Tables are expected to turn over quickly here, so waitresses will not be coming back to take your order for additional items. Space is tight, and you’ll likely sit very close to someone you don’t know. And finally, place at least two orders for baked pork buns, one just won’t be enough.
Contributed by Wendy at Empty Nestors Hit the Road
Waku Ghin in Singapore
Address: Level 2 Dining, L2-01, The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, 2 Bayfront Avenue, Singapore 018956
Chef: Tetsuya Wakuda
Dining at elegant two starred Waku Ghin is a very special experience. Seating only 25 guests at a time, the restaurant serves a 10 course degustation menu that has you thinking, savouring and appreciating every last bite. Twenty years after opening his acclaimed eponymous restaurant in Sydney, Japanese born Australian chef Tetsuya Wakuda opened Waku Ghin at Marina Bay Sands in Singapore and we reserved a table straight away. Tetsuya is renowned for his pursuit of the best ingredients and commitment to supporting producers that show the utmost respect for their environment and products. We did not think twice about booking the 450 SGD (without wine) dinner and were not disappointed.
The Japanese inspired meal starts at the bar where you observe the precision skills of the kitchen team at work with some of the most precious ingredients in the world. If you enjoy seafood you are in for a treat. Lobster and abalone feature on Waku Ghin’s menu. The most famous dish is sea urchin served with marinated botan shrimp and Oscietra caviar. Expect to taste melt in your mouth wagyu beef in the final savoury courses. Lastly you move to the main dining room where, with magical views of Singapore harbour, you enjoy delicate desserts with Japanese flavours like yuzu.
Contributed by Katy at Untold Morsels
Michelin Starred Restaurants in Europe
Sea Grill in Brussels Belgium
Address: Rue du Fossé aux Loups 47, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium
Chef: Yves Mattagne
Belgium has its fair share of Michelin-starred restaurants, more per capita in fact, than France. But for seafood-lovers, there’s one culinary destination in Brussels that stands out from the crowd, the two-star Michelin restaurant Sea Grill.
Sea Grill is tucked away in the Radisson Blu Royal Hotel in the heart of central Brussels, just a five-minute walk from the UNESCO-listed Grand Place. But this is no ordinary hotel restaurant. It is run entirely independently of the hotel by head chef Yves Mattagne, a legend on the Belgian culinary scene.
While it is possible to enjoy the Sea Grill menu a la carte, it would be a pity not to discover everything this restaurant has to offer. The Incontournable menu is an 8-course seafood feast highlighting the complete range of flavours available from the ocean.
When I dined at Sea Grill in 2014, every course was impressive in both the delicate yet complex flavours, but also the artistic presentations. From langoustines from the North Sea to tiny, intensely sweet clams, to cod with truffles the meal was a parade of delights.
The highlight for me though was homard à la presse or pressed lobster. Sea Grill is home to one of only five silver Christofle lobster presses in the world. This 40-pound press crushes all the delicious juice from the lobster which is then cooked into an unbelievably rich bisque table-side. It is culinary performance art in the classic French style.
The Incontournable menu will set you back about 200€ (or 300€ including wine pairings) but you can enjoy the daily lunch menu for 75€, and I can assure you it will be money well spent.
Contributed by Alison at Cheese Web
Le Saint James in Bordeaux, France
Address: 3 Place Camille Hostein, 33270 Bouliac, France
Chef: Nicolas Magie
One of Bordeaux’s Michelin Star restaurants often missed simply because it is not located right in Bordeaux Center is Le Saint James. Helmed by Bordeaux chef Nicolas Magie, the 1-Michelin star restaurant resides in a beautiful hotel designed by the famous French architect, Philippe Starck. The hotel and restaurant sit just across the Garonne River on what is called the “balcony of Bordeaux” for the outstanding hilltop viewpoint it affords over the vines rolling down to the river and the city beyond.
Chef Magie puts his innovative spin on Bordelaise classics. The menu changes regularly to showcase the best seasonal produce and products from local producers across the Bordeaux wine region like the famous Bazas beef, oysters from the Bay of Arcachon or asparagus from Blaye. It’s all, of course, paired with local Bordeaux wines including wine produced right on the Le Saint James estate, which is the smallest winery in all of the Bordeaux wine region.
Jennifer and Tim, Bordeaux locals, recommend dining on the tasting menu at lunch when you can truly appreciate the view from either the outdoor terrace or the restaurant’s floor to ceiling glass windows.
Contributed by Jennifer and Tim at Luxe Adventure Traveler
Py-r in Toulouse, France
Address: 19 Descente de La Halle aux Poissons, Toulouse France
Chef: Pierre Clement
Py-r a one Michelin Star restaurant in old town Toulouse France, at 19 Descente de La Halle aux Poissons, creates a dining experience that is unique, delicious; engaging all my senses.
The building is painted white and we enter through glass sliding doors. We walk downstairs to a cellar like area made of small bricks common to Toulouse during medieval times. They are also painted white. We are seated at a round table with a white tablecloth and navy velvet chairs. The first thing we notice are the plates that are designed to look broken and the cutlery that is heavy in your hand and geometric in design.
We decide on a degustation menu with matched wines. Now to the food! With champagne the first course is presented each element on their own unique dish: pate on toast on a rectangular beige plate, a small biscuit with olive tapenade and a decorative piece of tomato, tomato soup in a tapered etched liquor glass with watermelon balls and green foam with croutons in a small round glass. Much of the meal is presented in this way. Our next course features different types of heirloom beetroot in different shades of red, purple, yellow and white in an old fashioned soup dish.
After this John Dory fish with white bean foam and whole white beans; delicious. The quality of the food continues through the night with two more savoury dishes and a magical dessert featuring chocolate. Chef Pierre Clement visits our table and shares his passion for local produce and its influence on his ever changing menu.
Aroma in Rome, Italy
Address: Via Labicana, 125, 00184 Roma RM, Italy
Chef: Di Iorio
When planning a trip to Rome, one must engulf themselves in the culinary offerings of the Romans to truly get the full feel and authentic experience of this ancient Roman town. Trying all the local dishes is a must and if in your price range, I would highly recommend dining at the extraordinary 1 Michelin Star restaurant, Aroma Restaurant, located in the penthouse of the Palazzo Manfredi Hotel. Not only will you be treated to a unique and intimate dining experience but you will have front row seats to the astounding views of a piece of history, the Colosseum. It is a must do for anyone in Rome, especially for couples as it is extremely romantic.
There is a price to pay when dining at a 1 Star Michelin restaurant but it is a special and unique dining experience that is worth the price tag, expect to pay $300 Euros for lunch for two. The service at this restaurant is superb and carefully crafted menu items by Roman born Chef Di Lorio will have you eagerly waiting on your seats for the next course. The restaurant offers classic Italian dishes with a flair that showcase local, fresh ingredients. We left our food selection up to the chef and dined on the tasting menu. We ate some of the most unique dishes that were not only delicious but also top marks for presentation. You will need to be patient and ready to sit back and enjoy your meal and setting as our lunch took approximately 2 hours from start to finish. In most European cultures, two hours for lunch is not unheard of but for us, North Americans who are always in a rush may find the service a bit sluggish. Overall, we are happy that we experienced this restaurant on our Rome in 2 Days trip.
Contributed by Diana at Dianas Healthy Living
ABaC in Barcelona Spain
Address: Av. del Tibidabo, 1, 08022 Barcelona, Spain
Chef: Jordi Cruz
Barcelona is a beautiful, bustling, cosmopolitan city. After a day of sightseeing and shopping ABaC hotel, Av. del Tibidabo, 1, 08022 Barcelona, Spain is the perfect place to kick back and relax. A calm oasis in the uptown part of the city, this small, luxury hotel also happens to be the home of a three Michelin star restaurant!
The food of Jordi Cruz has been thrilling diners for years now and the current status of the restaurant is testament to the work of this highly skilled and adventurous chef. To spend an evening eating at ABaC is one of total excellence- world class dining awaits. Service is superb and contributes to the refined yet relaxed atmosphere of the dining room. The food is amazing and the wine list is filled with local gems. In my opinion it is one of the best around.
You have the choice of two tasting menus. ‘Our Tradition’ (180 Euro) or ‘The Avant-Garde’ (210 Euro). Both are an exciting mixture of interesting ingredients, exceptionally plated and most importantly completely delicious.
One of the many highlights of our visit was the amazing selection of canapés that started our tasting menu journey. These included nitro passion fruit, sea urchin curry with kafir lime, and focaccia and pigeon royal. The liquid nitrogen element of the passion fruit dish added an exciting bit of theatre to proceedings.
If you stay in the hotel it is truly luxurious to leisurely enjoy your wonderful tasting menu and just head upstairs to one of the relaxing and beautifully decorated bedroom for the evening. Heaven!
Contributed by Melanie at Two Plus Dogs
Eleven in Lisbon, Portugal
Address: Rua Marquês da Fronteira Jardim Amália Rodrigues, Lisboa, Portugal
Chef: Joachim Koerper
Located in the Amalia Rodrigues gardens of Rua Marques da Fronteira in Lisbon, one of the first things one notices when entering Eleven Lisbon is how privileged its location overlooking Lisbon’s Eduardo VII park is. Right after, the chic, modern and minimalist atmosphere of the venue – where artists regularly exhibit their artwork – sets you in a chilled mood, away from the city traffic jams and madness. Yet if there’s something that makes this restaurant shine on its own is the very fresh and locally sourced products the chef Joachim Koerper and his team elaborate Eleven’s dishes with.
I was invited to taste an Alentejo inspired menu and wine pairing to wrap up a press trip through the Portuguese region of Alentejo. So even if ours was created just for that occasion, I’m sure you will get lucky with the menu too as all their dishes looked delicious.
Tasting menus could be considered pricey to be in Portugal, yet trust me when I say they are very fairly priced considering its Michelin status, flawless service, and great dining experience.
Contributed by Inma at A World to Travel
El Celler de Can Roca, Girona in Catalonia, Spain
Address: Carrer de Can Sunyer, 48, 17007 Girona, Spain
Chef: Joan Roca
El Celler de Can Roca in Girona is not only a three Michelin Star restaurant in the Costa Brava, but also perennially lies at the top of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants. For 2018, it ranked second, just behind Osteria Francescana in Modena. Chef Joan Roca, along with sommelier Josep Roca, and pastry chef Jordi Roca, picked up where Ferran Adria of elBulli left off. Joan spent a season working at elBulli. The atmosphere is contemporary, with glass windows at every turn. Joan often takes guests on a tour of the kitchen, which is so quiet you could hear a pin drop. The menu includes the most contemporary and avant-garde versions of some of the most traditional Catalan dishes. This includes a local Palamos prawn that tastes like it came straight from the sea.
The full tasting menu at El Celler de Can Roca with wine pairings is €315 per person. Reservations are near, but not completely, impossible. If dining at Celler de Can Roca is on the top of your list of things to do in the Costa Brava, plan ahead. Very ahead. A new month of tables becomes available at midnight on the 1st day of every month. By the morning, the month is normally full. A waitlist is available.
Contributed by Amber at Only in Costa Brava
BonAmb in Costa Blanca Spain
Address: Carrer Benitachell, 100, 03730 Xàbia, Alacant, Spain
Chef: Alberto Ferruz
Trying a Michelin starred restaurants all over the world is one of our goals while traveling. We recently visited friends in Spain and looked forward to visiting their favourite restaurant in the region.
BonAmb opened it’s door in 2011 in Javea (about half an hour drive from Benidorm). Chef Alberto Ferruz was chosen as Best Chef of the Year 2015 by the Academia de la Gastronomia de la Comunidad Valenciana. He is one of the top chefs in Spain.
It didn’t take them long to get their first Michelin star and the second one followed a few years later.
BonAmb means ‘pleasant atmosphere’ and that’s exactly what you get here. The restaurant is very stylish and rather minimalistic. Nevertheless it feels like a warm and cosy place. It’s devided into different areas so it feels rather private. We chose the multi course menu and tasted about 14 different dishes. I can’t say what’s my favourite dish as it all tasted amazing. Overal I preferred the ones with fish.
The restaurant is unique because of the accompanying wines; They don’t choose the famous names but they surprised us a few times with some very special wines. What about a Spanish Sake or a Chilean wine with hops (a mix of beer and wine)?
So if you ever visit the Costa Blanca you have to visit Bonamb.
Contributed by Wendy at World Wide Wendy
Casamar Restaurant in Llafranc, Costa Brava Spain
Address: Carrer del Nero, 3, 17211 Llafranc, Girona, Spain
Chef: Quim Casellas
A few weeks ago I had the pleasure to eat at the gorgeous Casamar Restaurant in Llafranc along Spain’s stunning Costa Brava.
The atmosphere is very relaxed, with most seating outside on the deck overlooking beautiful Llafranc Harbour.
The dress code is smart casual and the entire experience can be quite entertaining with an elaborate display of food preparation right at the table. They focus on fresh seafood but there is also a great selection of meat and vegetarian dishes on offer.
We had a 7-course tasting menu which in usual circumstances would mean I wouldn’t be able to eat for about a week, but here it was just the right amount of food, with everyone leaving very full but not comatose! The presentation was immaculate and the food was accompanied by delicious wine and an even more spectacular view – that key ingredient to a memorable restaurant!
Depending on what you order, meals cost anywhere between €45 and €70, plus the cost of whatever drinks you choose.
Contributed by Janet at Journalist on the Run
Michelin Starred Restaurants in North America
French Laundry in Napa Valley, California
Address: 6640 Washington St, Yountville, CA 94599
Chef: Thomas Keller
One of the most coveted tables in the country, the French Laundry is the brainchild and baby of Thomas Keller, the only American-born chef to have two three-starred Michelin restaurants. Withstanding the test of time, it has had three Michelin stars for an unprecedented 12-years running and has also been honored by the James Beard Foundation with “Outstanding Restaurant” and “Outstanding Restaurateur” awards.
Set in a gorgeous stone cottage just outside Napa Valley, the experience was magical from start to finish. The chef’s tasting menu changes daily, but is always classically, refined French cuisine with herbs and spices from their garden across the street. There is the standard menu and a vegetarian-friendly version, each with 10+ courses (pre fixe for $300+ a person) for a multi-hour feast that is offered at both dinner and lunchtime. Lunch is the easier reservation to get, but it’s by no means easy. I actually had to pay someone $100 just to get me a table. And keep in mind it’s a lot of food so you’ll virtually be rolling out of there. Beyond optional wine pairings, there are also optional supplemental upcharges throughout the meal to make it that much more extravagant (I may have shelled out another $100 for truffle mac and cheese but passed on the wagyu beef).
Roses Luxury in Washington DC
Address: 717 8th St. SE on Capitol Hill, in Washington D.C.
Chef: Aaron Silverman
Roses Luxury has become a favorite for foodies, including the Obamas, in the nation’s capital. The Atmosphere at Roses Luxury is a bit casual, cozy, lively and welcoming. You can not make reservations unless you want to partially buy out the restaurant. Instead, you, or someone else, must be at the restaurant when it opens to get a seat or a time to return to get a seat. On a less busy day, you can show up just before open or even slightly after, but on weekends you will need to be there at least 45 minutes before opening. When the host gets to your place in line, you are escorted in to either be seated if seats are available or to pick a later time to return. We were 4th in line when we arrived and chose to sit at the counter in front of the kitchen. In my opinion, this is the best seat in the house. You watch the chefs preparing and plating the food with great attention to detail and are guaranteed amazing service since your service is always coming through the area.
Everything we ate was delicious. The only thing that is still on the menu from when we dined is the Lyche salad, which was amazing. The Japanese fried chicken on a bed of cabbage and topped with two different sauces was full of flavor, crispy and the juices from the chicken wilted and seasoned the cabbage below. The Kung Pao Tofu which was complimentary for us was not on the menu but was later added to it. Small plates are around $10-15 and large family style plates are around $32-$36.
Michelin Starred Restaurants in South America
Central in Lima, Peru
Address: Lima, Av. Pedro de Osma 301, Barranco 15063, Peru
Chef: Virgilio Martínez Véliz
As you enter the restaurant it feels a bit cold. There are concrete floors and large glass windows encapsulating a series of stone-topped tables draped with white table cloths. It feels as if you’ve entered a cave and ensures there’s nothing to distract from the brilliance of the food.
Almost immediately upon sitting down, your meal choice is confirmed, and the experience begins. The meal is a mandatory set-menu of 12 or 18 courses (vegetarian set available) with optional alcoholic or non-alcoholic drink pairings. You’re taken through the various altitudes and ecosystems of Peru; from the depths of the ocean, to the tips of the Andes, and the Amazon forest to the Edge of the Desert.
Each dish is expertly prepared with sustainably sourced, Peruvian ingredients.
Each course is described in detail as it’s served and presented in an inventive manner. In fact, the presentation was so unique that a few times I had to clarify which parts I was supposed to eat, and which were decoration!
The dishes included razor clams from 10m below sea-level, Piranha and Yuca from the Amazon at 120m, Tree tomatoes from 1890m in the Jungle Highlands, and baby goat from the Andean slopes at 3300m. The goat dish was served to us by Chef Virgilio himself, at which point my 6-year old criticized him for using baby goat! He chucked, then rushed back to the kitchen to continue overseeing preparation.
This table-side journey through the various ecosystems of Peru sets this restaurant apart from others in Lima, and throughout the world. Price Range $170-$250 pp.
Contributed by Kyla at Where is the World