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NYC Michelin Stars 2011

Eater just published the new Michelin Star Rankings for 2011 (N denotes a new ranking):

THREE STARS

Daniel
Jean Georges
Le Bernardin
Masa
Per Se

TWO STARS

Alto
Chef Table at Brooklyn Fare (N)
Corton
Gilt
Gordon Ramsay at The London
Kajitsu (N)
Marea (N)
Momofuku Ko
Picholine
Soto (N)

ONE STAR

Adour
Aldea (N)
Annisa
Anthos (closed)
Aureole
A Voce Columbus
A Voce Madison (N)
Blue Hill
Bouley
Breslin (The) (N)
Café Boulud
Casa Mono
Convivio
Danny Brown Wine Bar & Kitchen (N)
Del Posto
Dovetail (N)
Dressler
Eleven Madison Park
Gotham Bar and Grill
Gramercy Tavern
Jewel Bako
Kyo Ya
L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon
Laut (N)
Marc Forgione
Minetta Tavern
Modern (The)
Oceana
Peter Luger
Public
River Café
Rouge Tomate
Saul
Seäsonal
Shalezeh
SHO Shaun Hergatt
Spotted Pig
Sushi Azabu
Sushi of Gari
Veritas (currently closed)
Wallsé
wd~50

Congrats to all.

-----
Per Se
10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

Eleven Madison Park
11 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10010

Gramercy Tavern
42 E 20th St, New York, NY 10003

Casa Mono
52 Irving Place, New York, NY 10003

Blue Hill
75 Washington Place, New York, NY 10011

Jean Georges
1 Central Park W, New York, NY 10023

Spotted Pig
314 W 11th St, New York, NY 10014

Del Posto
85 10th Avenue, New York, NY 10011

Minetta Tavern
113 MacDougal St, New York, NY 10012

A Voce
41 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10010

Veritas
43 East 20th St., New York, NY 10003

Le Bernardin
155 W. 51st St., New York, NY 10019

Annisa
13 Barrow Street, New York, NY 10014

Gari
370 Columbus Avenue, New York, NY 10024

Jewel Bako
239 E 5th St, New York, NY 10003

Gotham Bar and Grill
12 East 12th Street, New York, NY 10003

Picholine
35 West 64th St., New York, NY 10023

Kyo Ya
94 E 7th St, New York, NY 10009

Momofuku Ko
163 1st Ave, New York, NY 10003

Oceana
120 W 49th St, New York, NY 10020

Shalezeh
1420 Third Avenue, New York, NY 10021

Marc Forgione
134 Reade Street, New York, NY 10013

Laut
15 E 17th St, New York, NY 10003

Convivio
45 Tudor City Place, New York, NY 10017

Sushi Azabu
428 Greenwich St (basement), New York, NY 10013

Corton
239 West Broadway, New York, NY 10013

Rouge Tomate
10 East 60th Street, New York, NY 10022

Kajitsu
414 East 9th Street, New York, NY 10009

Marea
240 Central Park South, New York, NY 10019

Aldea
31 West 17th Street, New York, NY 10011

SHO Shaun Hergatt
40 Broad St, New York, NY 10004

The Breslin
20 W 29th St, New York, NY 10001

Masa
10 Columbus Cir, New York, NY 10019

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  1. So, Marea gets 2 stars and EMP stays at 1. Any thoughts on that?

    -----
    Marea
    240 Central Park South, New York, NY 10019

    3 Replies
    1. re: Heeney

      I actually have no issues with that.

      Marea is excellent.

      EMP, while good, isn't all that creative or distinctive in terms of cuisine, as far as I'm concerned. Seems like embellished comfort food for the most part.

      -----
      Marea
      240 Central Park South, New York, NY 10019

      1. re: Heeney

        The one star list is as schizophrenic and bizarre as usual, but Eleven Madison Park is squarely a one star restaurant IMO, regardless of the excessive CH love for it. The restaurant definitely has the potential to improve though.

        The three star rankings are certainly less controversial, even if everyone likes to hate on Daniel. Also, I'm glad to see that Brooklyn Fare and Kajitsu were recognized.

        -----
        Eleven Madison Park
        11 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10010

        Kajitsu
        414 East 9th Street, New York, NY 10009

        1. re: Heeney

          I certainly do. I have nothing against Marea but I do think that EMP deserves at the very least two MIchelin stars. Especially (I know michelin was published just after the renovations) after the renovations. They are stepping up their game-once again.

        2. Meh.

          The NY Michelin has been a joke since it started. Their mystery critics might as well be the same folks whose opinions go into Zagat ratings, for all we know about them. They've always had a hard-on for French and New American - they've always suffered from a lack of any knowledge about non-Japanese Asian cuisines. And given the absence of Yasuda, they're still a little in the dark on Japanese as well. It seems like they took to heart the criticism they received over that, though - I predicted yesterday that they'd bump up two Japanese restos to two stars. I guessed Soto and Kyo Ya, was half right. Kajitsu is great, though, and certainly deserves to be up there.

          Let's be honest - Their 3-star list is essentially "pick the five most expensive prix fixes in Manhattan" - actually, forget "Manhattan" even. It's strictly midtown.

          And really, it's even more narrow than that: every single 3-star (and half of the 2-stars) are restaurants within walking distance (10 street blocks) of Central Park South. Do all their "critics" live in Trump Tower or something? We always talk about the lack of diversity in the cuisines every year, but how about the lack of diversity in neighborhoods?

          Getting into the one-stars, they don't venture much further - a good third of them are in one of four hoods, all bordering each other: Midtown East, Midtown West, Upper East, Upper West. A big square of middlebrow right smack in the middle of Manhattan.

          But that's who the Michelin guide is for - the tourist who doesn't want to go too far from the hotel, wants a place close to the theater.

          And as usual, cuisines stick to the basics. You can, quite literally, count on one hand the restos that are not Continental, American, or Japanese. At least they're giving Japan more props now.

          Now, maybe in the next year some of their "critics" will venture into Chinatown.

          -----
          Kyo Ya
          94 E 7th St, New York, NY 10009

          Kajitsu
          414 East 9th Street, New York, NY 10009

          41 Replies
          1. re: sgordon

            Well, the NYC chefs seem to be taking the Michelin rankings very seriously. They want the prestige and resulting increase in bookings.

            The reviewers, surprisingly, are also American and presumably familiar with the dining scene in New York.

            http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/06/din...

            1. re: peter j

              Well, yeah, of course chefs and restaurateurs are concerned - it affects business, particularly in the touristy areas. It's a guide for tourists, after all.

              To those of us who live here, though, it's not terribly interesting. It's very middlebrow for the most part - I suppose what I wonder about is just why it gets so much hype versus any other guide in the first place.

              1. re: sgordon

                The two and three star rankings are extremely reliable. The one star rankings are about as reliable as those of the New York Times, though I agree with some of them.

                I don't think Michelin pretends to be anything more than a guide for tourists, but the validity of its upper tier ratings appear to be consistent my own personal experience with these restaurants.

                If there is a bias, it's not geographic - it's about the creativity and magic of the food, from a global perspective and stripped of local favoritism.

                1. re: peter j

                  It does seem that those preferences do seem to be skewed towards French cuisine (still).

                  Here's Esquire's take on it:
                  http://www.esquire.com/blogs/food-for...

                  1. re: huiray

                    John Mariani is a vindictive moron and completely irrelevant nowadays. It takes a special kind of talent to make Michelin look like the victim.

                    1. re: hcbk0702

                      Oh, I don't know...that article brought a smile to my face...

                  2. re: peter j

                    "If there is a bias, it's not geographic..."
                    ----------
                    Really?

                    "...from a global perspective..."
                    ----------
                    You mean from a "Western" perspective.

              2. re: sgordon

                I'm curious as to what is keeping EMP at 1 star. I've never been, but it got 4 stars from Bruni, 28 from Zagat, and it cracked the "Worlds 50 Best" list this year.
                I agree that leaving Yasuda off the list is a sin of the highest order.

                1. re: sgordon

                  I dont know if this is true or not, according to Japanese chefs interviewed on Japanese TV, many chefs have turned down being listed in the michelin guide for many reasons. Maybe Yasuda doesnt want to be listed.

                  There is nothing in NYC's chinatown that deserves a michelin star. There are a few places listed in their bib gourmand for chinatown though.

                  1. re: Ricky

                    "There is nothing in NYC's chinatown that deserves a michelin star"
                    ----------------
                    Perhaps because Chinese cuisine does not fit into the Western/French concept of food?

                    1. re: huiray

                      Chinese food in NYC's chinatown in general is just not very good compared to other Chinese communities in North America.

                      1. re: Ricky

                        Not in my experience - I've had much better meals in Manhattan Chinatown than I ever had in SF Chinatown, for example. And Flushing Chinatown far surpasses SF's. (Have lived and eaten for a couple of years in Taipei, traveled extensively in China and HK, and eaten in Chinatowns all over the US.)

                  2. re: sgordon

                    We've different tastes, but it's extremely unfair to attack the (highly qualified) critics because you happen to disagree. I think the interview with a critic dispels a lot of the concerns here (of qualification, process and region).

                    http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/20...

                    1. re: ediblover

                      "We've different tastes, but it's extremely unfair to attack the (highly qualified) critics because you happen to disagree."

                      I'd love to hear your explanation as to how Rhong Tiam got their star last year.

                      1. re: Bob Martinez

                        Perhaps you've noticed that at least 4 of the posters on this thread (including ediblover) have 2 or only 1 post ever. I don't know why that is unless they are here simply to extol the Michelin star process.

                      2. re: ediblover

                        I think it's perfectly fair when the statistic show that the critics have obvious biases towards particular neighborhoods and cuisines. Really - 100% of the top tier restos are within walking distance of each other. 50% of the second-tier are in that very same area.

                        Highly qualified? By what qualifications? The only one mentioned is a degree in "hospitality, hotel management, or cooking" - only one of which has anything to do with food. Their critics, I think we can agree, are highly qualified to throw a nice dinner party. I don't know if they're qualified to judge food. "M" in the article seems to be, but what of the others? Perhaps she was the one trotted out for the interview because she'd make the best impression.

                        And there's a certain elitist notion in the qualifications as well: one who has a degree in cooking is qualified, but someone who actually worked the lines and made their way up the restaurant ladder is not. You have to have come from a privileged enough background to have gone to college to be a Michelin inspector. I'm a department head at a major university, and -I- find that elitist.

                        The star ratings are decided in yearly meetings - which means that, say, someone who is less than excited about Haute French is probably going to be the odd duck, and might not be invited back the next year. It's a system that rewards agreement, rather than winnowing down general consensus.

                        ----

                        Re: Yasuda's omission - I've heard that as well, but specifically from Japanese chefs in Tokyo who don't believe that foreigners have the right to judge Japanese food. I would guess that a Japanese chef who chose to come to NYC doesn't have that kind of prejudice - but it's certainly possible. I suspect, though, it's simply Michelin's reticence to admit mistakes, as someone else noted regarding EMP.

                        1. re: sgordon

                          I agree Michelin has missed a lots of good restaurant in the guide, but which restaurant "do you think" deserve 3-star but not in the guide and which 3-star restaurants in the guide should be removed ?

                          I can see Masa is a obvious one considered by many that does not deserve 3-star.

                          1. re: skylineR33

                            I would give EMP three stars - and possibly Del Posto. But I know both of those are controversial choices. I might move Ko up a notch as well, but I've only been twice - I would need to see how much the menu's changed since I last dined there, go a couple more times.

                            I would move down Daniel and Jean-Georges. I think they're both played out and boring. As I've said many a time before, I'd rather eat at Cafe Boulud - even were the prices reversed - than at Daniel. Possibly I'd drop Le Bernardin as well, though it would be my favorite of the three Frenchies.

                            Speaking of which - my god, if Gavin Kaysen doesn't deserve two stars for Cafe B, I don't know who does.

                            Per Se I think is an overpriced rip-off, but value to price ratio has nothing to do with the ratings.

                            There aren't any other places I'd put in the 3-star category, though. There are a number of restos I'd move up to two stars: wd-50, certainly Del Posto and Kyo Ya, The Modern.

                            I would drop Alto, Corton, Gilt, and Gordon Ramsay down to one star.

                            I would end their bizarre allergy to most Batali restaurants. Babbo and Esca would both be on the list, probably at two stars each.

                            As to more restos that I think deserve one, if not two stars - the list is very long. Where to even start? Just in Brooklyn I can think of a list of potential one-stars off the top of my head: Roberta's, Applewood, Rosewater, Convivium, Henry's End, Vinegar Hill House, Taro Sushi, Zenkichi, The Grocery. Mind you, I'm not not saying that necessarily all of them should be - I'm saying "potential" - but I wonder how often the inspectors get out that way.

                            In Manhattan, the list is huge - there could be more Italian (Falai, Scarpetta) and perhaps one measly representative of Central or South American cuisine?

                            And nothing of Indian cuisine? Really? Tabla - which sadly will be gone this time next year - just wasn't good enough for them? Or Devi, Tamarind, or Vermillion? None of them warrant even one star?

                            Tom Colicchio seems to be out of favor - nothing for C&S, nothing for Craft... Surprising. I'd give both (and Craftbar as well) at least one star each.

                            Don't even get me started on Chinese. Perhaps it's not to the personal taste of the inspectors - well, get a few more inspectors who do know various regional Chinese cuisines, then. We don't have any three-stars, probably not even two-stars - but we certainly have one-stars here in NYC. Oriental Garden, Fuleen, Ping's, Pacificana - just to name a few - a case could be made for any of them.

                            Like I said, I could be here all day listing places...

                            1. re: sgordon

                              One michelin star Chinese restaurant in NYC ?! You mean Oriental Garden, Fuleen, Ping's are at par with Lei Garden and Yan Toh Heen of HK ... I don't think so if the star is recognized world-wide (as claimed by Michelin, which mean the Chinese restaurant with 1 star in NYC is just as good as those one star in HK). But the HK michelin guide is crap ...

                              I do think Michelin guide is usually a good guide and reference material for tourist.

                              1. re: skylineR33

                                I've never been to Lei Garden or Yan Toh Heen so I couldn't say. But restaurants are judged in context - I've spoken to people who've eaten at, say, The Fat Duck, and said it's as good as / on the same level with WD-50. But the level of the playing field is so much higher here than there - so Heston gets three, because in the UK he's as good as it gets. Were he in NYC, he might get one or two stars. L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon gets two stars in London but the same restaurant gets only only one star in NYC. Context matters.

                                1. re: sgordon

                                  However according to Michelin's official word, there is only one context, which means Fat Duck is better than WD50 if one follows Michelin. This makes the stars even more controversial.

                                  1. re: skylineR33

                                    I'm convinced thes stars are given based on a curve. Theres no way Momofuku Ko is better than say Nihon Ryori Ryugin or WD50 is better than say Cinc Sentis.

                                    1. re: Ricky

                                      Momofuku Ko and Ryugin are two very different restaurant FYI. They serve different type of cuisine and should not be used for comparison.

                                    2. re: skylineR33

                                      If there truly was one context, they'd have the same inspectors travel the globe - but they don't. They have a team for NYC, a team for the UK, a team for Paris - so each guide, regardless what they say, really can only be in context to itself.

                                      You can't scientifically measure how delicious a dish is, after all - you can only judge it in context to what else you, personally, have eaten. And if the UK team spends all their time in the UK... well, they're judging TFD against boiled mutton and kidney pie.

                                      Mind you, though, I love kidney pie.

                                      ---

                                      Side note: it's not like Michelin hasen't been accused of fudging the facts - I mean, they insinuated they had some fifty Paris inspectors on the job, and later Pascal Remy revealed the number was closer to five.

                                      1. re: sgordon

                                        Yes yes agree. I am pointing out what Michelin claims they are doing. They say, whether you agree or not, they only use one standard across the board for all cities they have visited. Let me say it again, which means, according to Michelin, Soto which gets 2 stars in NYC is just as good as Sushi Kanesaka (which also get 2 stars) in Tokyo, although I think not too many people agree on this.

                                    3. re: sgordon

                                      Having been to Fat Duck and WD-50. As well as both the Paris and NY L'Ateliers. I can say that your "in context" factor isn't really true.
                                      The food at L'Atelier in Paris is indeed better than the one here.
                                      And between Fat Duck and WD-50 there is no comparison. Fat Duck is on a whole other level.

                                      1. re: sgordon

                                        Errr, no. The Fat Duck is MUCH, MUCH better than WD-50. It would be a no-brainer three star anywhere in the world, including NYC.

                                        There's a reason why WD-50 is not mentioned in the same breath as El Bulli, The Fat Duck, and Alinea; it's not even close to that level.

                                        The L'Atelier branches are of varying quality. The ones in Tokyo and Paris seem to be the strongest.

                                        1. re: hcbk0702

                                          Well, I just used TFD as an example, as I've friends who've been there and none of them were overwhelmed - they enjoyed their meals, just didn't find them to be anything they couldn't get at home, once you subtracted the presentation and showmanship. "Overkill" according to one friend... "they try to be whimsical but come off just pretentious" from another... the latter of which is, granted, a charge levelled at Wylie Dufresne somewhat regularly as well...

                                          Scientific studies have shown that for most people, their impression of the food on the plate is affected greatly by the surroundings and how it's presented to them. The kind of reverance, the "specialness" of dining at TFD, the setting, etc - all very likely have an effect. Can't say though, I haven't been.

                                          I have yet to meet anyone who's eaten at Alinea that enjoyed the experience. The complaints ranged from "overkill" and "too precious" to the tasting menu not being terribly well arranged - that each dish didn't flow into the next very well. I don't know if it's that once they were exciting and have just fallen off a bit or what - but after a number of less-than-enthusiastic reports from friends who know their food, I've crossed them off my next Chicago "to do" list.

                                          1. re: sgordon

                                            Nothing is more subjective that food. But it's pretty clear you and I have different tastes. Alinea was a superb experience for me. Not quite on par with TFD. But very close.
                                            The last thing TFD is is pretentious. I sat in there with people in jeans and the staff didn't bat an eye. Service was the best I've ever had while still being fun and relaxed.
                                            You are correct though about food being affected by other factors such as service, dinnerware, surroundings, etc. That's how Fat Duck approaches food. As a multisensory experience. Wine tastes better from a glass than a foam cup. It's odd. But it does. Eating is one of the few activities that uses all 5 senses. The concept of "flavor" remember, uses at least 2 of the 5 senses.
                                            Also, if you think all the UK can offer besides fat Duck is mutton and kidney, you obviously have never been.
                                            Also, the fact that all the 3 Michelin stars are next to each other makes sense.
                                            It's where all the money is, thus they can afford the best product and hire the most talent.

                                            1. re: Heeney

                                              "the fact that all the 3 Michelin stars are next to each other makes sense.
                                              It's where all the money is,"

                                              There's money all over this town. Have you seen rent prices in Tribeca or on the LES recently?

                                              Also, we have a subway system and cabs. Not terribly hard to get around.

                                              1. re: sgordon

                                                What i mean is that you already pointed out that the 3 stars are all in the touristy areas. Most people paying for a 3 star quality meal will do so on vacation or on a special event. Hence, most money for the dining scene would be in places like midtown v the east village or the lower east side.
                                                Just because you can afford a place in TriBeCa doesn't mean you are eating dinner at Le Bernardin once a week.

                                            2. re: sgordon

                                              The random anecdotes of "friends" aren't particularly convincing.

                                              Anyway, just realize that your friends are disagreeing with the assessment of the majority of experienced diners, chefs, and critics.

                                              1. re: hcbk0702

                                                Also, sgordon and friends appear to favor hearty, familiar dishes over more rarefied techniques and flavor combinations.

                                                Nothing wrong with that, but that would explain sgordon's Michelin re-rankings (like demoting Corton and Jean Georges and promoting Babbo and Craft, which also sounds strange to me) as well as his friends' reactions to Fat Duck and Alinea.

                                                1. re: fm1963

                                                  I wouldn't say that - I've been accused of boosting for WD-50 too much, and there's nothing hearty or familiar about Wylie's cuisine.

                                                  My friends aren't the only ones who dislike Alinea - see Bourdain's recent comments on doing the tasting menu - not that he's the grand arbiter of taste or anything, but just as an example of another who knows their food well and shares the same opinion.

                                                  I wouldn't say everyone disliked TFD - in fact I stated clearly that they enjoyed their meals. Just that they didn't think the food in their mouths was, once you stripped away the headphones and dry ice and whatnot, anything better than they'd had at other "molecular gastro" restaurants.

                                                  Actually, if anything I find Daniel, JG, etc to be too "familiar" and not adventurous enough in flavor combinations. But that said, I do like hearty & familiar now and then too (well, who doesn't?) - and for H&F, Babbo and Craft are certainly way up there.

                                                  1. re: sgordon

                                                    While the food may seem somewhat "familiar" at Daniel, the execution of nearly all of the dishes is pretty close to perfection, and the food is all very, very satisfying. I prefer Daniel over per se, probably also over JG and Le Benardin.

                                                    If we're talking familiarity, I do not know why we are bashing Daniel and JG while not saying a word about LB.

                                                    The quality of the ingredient at LB is obviously very high, but while the food is great, it is rather boring. Of course their clientele - mostly businessmen - must be accounted for, and most of the businessmen i know going on business lunches do not enjoy too many surprises.

                                                    Also a comment on the location of the three star restaurants. Yes, per se and masa are 20 feet apart from each other and JG is on the opposing side of Columbus Circle. But aside from Masa and per se, the youngest of the three star establishments is 14 years old. Tribeca and the LES have only recently become "chic" (i'd know i live in tribeca).

                                                    I agree that there should be some more geographic diversity, but really not too many other restaurants deserve three or two stars. C&S and Craft should probably have a star each (let's be real people - the spotted pig has a star), Del posto should stay right where it is and I personally think that EMP should have atleast two stars.

                                                    I went to Corton a week ago, and my meal was solid. On my first visit i received atrocious service, but michelin only rates "what's on the table". I had an excellent lamb dish there, and the brioche dessert which i've had two times is one of the best things i have ever had.

                                                    Why has London had two stars for this long? seriously? I've never been and probably will never go, as it has only two stars from the NYT and is charging the same price as LB.

                                      2. re: sgordon

                                        IMO I think Kyo Ya is fine where it is, its just an above average Japanese restaurant. Ko doesnt belong anywhere on this list. I agree craftbar should be up there. Laut is the new Rhong Tiam. Zenkichi deserves a star at least.

                                        1. re: sgordon

                                          I don't particularly like Michelin's NYC list, but your list would be even wackier.

                                          Babbo and Esca at two stars? No chance.

                                          Most of the places you've listed in Brooklyn are good neighborhood joints, not destination restaurants (that said, there are plenty of strange one stars on the Michelin list).

                                          There are definitely no Chinese or Indian places in NYC that merit a star. Both cuisines fare better in other major food cities.

                                          Daniel's rating may be inflated, but Le Bernardin would be a solid three star restaurant in France (Per Se and Masa as well). EMP would probably never rise above one star in Paris, as there are too many restaurants there that serve similar cuisine, but at a much higher level.

                                          1. re: sgordon

                                            Give EMP and possibly Del Posto three stars while dropping Jean Georges, Daniel, and Le Bernardin? I would have to throw my Michelin guide in the trash if that ever happened.
                                            I respect Batali and his work as a chef, but to give literally a third of his NYC restaurants a 1-2 star promotion is absolutely ludicrous, Esca in particular. Dropping other restaurants like Alto and Corton over those just does not make any sense to me. For Italian in general, I don't see many restaurants worth mentioning besides a handful.
                                            I really enjoy Chinese food and I love going to Flushing and Chinatown to eat, but those restaurants do not fit the criteria to gain a star.

                                            1. re: Bko

                                              "a very good restaurant in its category" - that's the definition of a one-star resto.

                                              I can think of a few very good restaurants in their category in Chinatown.

                                              1. re: sgordon

                                                There are a lot of places I like in Chinatown too, and Michelin is really terrible at evaluating Asian cuisine in general (they probably get Japanese the most, but still misjudge a lot). But if you look through the Hong Kong Michelin guide, compared to some of the one stars there, the best places in NYC Chinatown would be like *negative* three stars (anti-stars? black holes?).

                                                1. re: hcbk0702

                                                  There is also a 'cultural clash' between Western expectations for food and Chinese expectations for food. The Michelin Guide (and much of Western food commentary and "Guides") is predicated a lot on Western concepts of food.

                                                  I'm sure many have read this article from a few years ago before but for those who have not here's an interesting report on the matter: http://www.gourmet.com/magazine/2000s...

                                  2. I suspect their problem with EMP is that they don't want to admit their mistakes. It took them a long time to give EMP its first star.

                                    Keeping Aureole and Oceana starred after their Las Vegas makeovers is another inertia problem.

                                    -----
                                    Oceana
                                    120 W 49th St, New York, NY 10020

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: beaulieu

                                      You might be on to something there. If there's one word we can say we've learned to associate with Michelin, it's stubborn.

                                      I'm sure that with the change in menu format will prompt the 2nd star acknowledgment for EMP next year...

                                    2. Also of note: Brooklyn, which has a few very strong food neighborhoods, gets left behind. It's nice that the borough has its first two-star, but there are a LOT of one-star deserving restos that probably ought to make the cut. Maybe they need to put out a seperate guide rather than just give a couple random cap-tips Eastward. You'd think at least Roberta's, which has been at the center of so much hype, would have gotten their attention.

                                      But then Brooklyn is REALLY far from midtown.

                                      Also also of note: Ssam Bar. Really, they put it on the "Bib Gourmand" list? It's not cheap - dinner there would cost you as much as at many of the one-stars - and I think many (outside the knee-jerk Changhaters) would think it deserving of being on the main list.

                                      But then I could sit here all day listing restos I feel were excluded, in both boroughs...

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: sgordon

                                        Anyone care to report on how good Danny Brown actually is? I haven't heard much good about them..not that I've heard much about them period.

                                        Otherwise I have no problems with the newcomers that received 1 star

                                        1. re: wreckers00

                                          I haven't been on CH in awhile but wanted to see what the chatter would be since I saw that Danny Brown was awarded a star. I was really excited to see that it made the list, maybe a bit surprised that anyone outside the neighborhood knows it exists. I live in Forest Hills and my husband and I have had dinner there at least 15 times since they opened. All of our meals except for the very first (which was 2 weeks after the opening) have been excellent. I can say that the wine list, while it's fine and has some nice choices, could stand some improvement.

                                          There is a lot of mixed opinion about Danny Brown in Forest Hills, especially on the neighborhood blog Queens Central. I think the naysayers are ones who think it's "too Manhattan" which is ridiculous. Danny Brown is trying to offer something a little more ambitious than the nonsense that passes for other restaurants around here. And no I don't work for him :)

                                      2. I've been to a good smattering of all level of restaurants from this year's list including:

                                        Per Se
                                        Jean George
                                        Brooklyn Fare
                                        Ko
                                        EMP
                                        SHO
                                        Del Posto
                                        And a handful of the other one star places.

                                        All-in-all, my best meals were at Per Se, Del Posto and EMP.

                                        I really am not sure if the stars mean anything to me at all. I like to buy the books because they are good to hold, and easy to search through if you don't know what you are in the mood for. If you are looking beyond that, best of luck.