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SF Michelin Stars 2012

deepfry7 Oct 25, 2011 01:57 PM

The full list isn't out for another couple of hours, but congrats to Chef David Kinch and his chef de cuisine, John Paul Carmona, for garnering their 3rd Michelin star. Unfortunately I have yet to dine at Manresa (probably my top to-go place that I haven't been to yet in the US), but have had the pleasure of their cooking in a pop-up in NYC this past May. Got to briefly meet them and they seemed like truly caring and dedicated chefs.

It's a no-brainer, but TFL maintains their 3*, where I had the best meal of my life in the extended tasting menu last year. I also look forward to eating at Benu and Saison (elevated to 2*) in my next trip to SF Bay area.

** Edit: Manresa maintains their 2*. Chef Keller must have gotten some false information when he tweeted congrats.

  1. Robert Lauriston Oct 28, 2011 05:08 PM

    Is there a Michelin style of food? "Certainly not in North America. When you look in San Francisco, you see Aziza and Atelier Crenn and Saison and La Costanera, so you really have everything across the gamut."

    Yeah, right, the gamut from French-influenced fussy Cal-Moroccan to fussy Cal-French modernism to fussy Cal-French minimalism to French-influenced fussy Cal-Peruvian.


    5 Replies
    1. re: Robert Lauriston
      pauliface Oct 29, 2011 10:18 AM

      Yes Monsieur, tonight we have peche a la frog, or frog a la peche.

      1. re: Robert Lauriston
        Paul H Oct 30, 2011 09:30 PM

        Michelin is more impressed by cooking than by shopping. Thus, places like Chez Panisse and Camino are never going to get any Michelin cred.

        Chez Panisse
        1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

        1. re: Paul H
          vulber Oct 31, 2011 02:30 AM

          so then are you saying that chez panisse stopped cooking last year?

          1. re: Paul H
            Robert Lauriston Oct 31, 2011 08:28 AM

            As I noted above, Frances and One Market got stars but Plum got only a Bib Gourmand.

            Chez Panisse had a star and lost it due to inconsistency.

            Chez Panisse
            1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

            One Market Restaurant
            1 Market Street, San Francisco, CA 94105

            1. re: Paul H
              drewskiSF Oct 31, 2011 08:40 AM

              Camino was also Bib Gourmand, but lost it for 2012

          2. Robert Lauriston Oct 25, 2011 06:08 PM

            I thought Costanera was angling for a Michelin star. The place felt weirdly overstaffed.

            6 Replies
            1. re: Robert Lauriston
              ML8000 Oct 25, 2011 07:19 PM

              Yeah but do the apprentices cut bread for 2 years before their allowed to scrap bread crumbs off your table?

              1. re: Robert Lauriston
                vulber Oct 25, 2011 11:30 PM

                is the food there significantly different (better) than piqueo's? i think piqueo's is one of the better peruvian restaurants in SF, but certainly not michelin quality....

                1. re: vulber
                  Windy Oct 26, 2011 07:26 AM

                  No, the food there is good, but not as good as Piqueo's and a little more expensive (but the view is considerably better).

                  I don't think Michelin is why Costanera is overstaffed.

                  830 Cortland Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94110

                  1. re: Windy
                    vulber Oct 26, 2011 08:15 AM

                    true - but the michelin guide in theory is only supposed to be about the food - that being said, while it does seem like they often take service into account, i've rarely seen them take view into account....

                    1. re: vulber
                      Robert Lauriston Oct 26, 2011 09:16 AM

                      Officially the stars are only about what's on the plate, and decor and service affect only the knife-and-fork ratings, but having looked at the list for a few years, I can't believe that. Based on the following criteria, the food at Plum (Bib Gourmand) doesn't rank as high as Frances or One Market (one star each)?

                      · The quality of ingredients
                      · The skill in their preparation and the combination of flavours
                      · The level of creativity
                      · The value for money
                      · The consistency of culinary standards

                2. re: Robert Lauriston
                  drewskiSF Oct 27, 2011 04:41 PM

                  well if it was the strategy, it appears to have been a good one?

                3. ckshen Oct 25, 2011 04:30 PM

                  interesting development that Baume got the second star before Chez TJ. Chef Chemel left Chez TJ when the owner wrote him off for getting the second star. Maybe that's what drove Chemel.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: ckshen
                    bbulkow Oct 25, 2011 06:32 PM

                    I thought Baume was closing - is a two star really going to close?

                    And, more importantly, did Madera at the Rosewood lose their star? That was the most disappointing meal in recent history.

                    2825 Sand Hill Road, Menlo Park, CA 94025

                    1. re: bbulkow
                      ckshen Oct 25, 2011 09:25 PM

                      where did you hear that they are closing?

                      1. re: ckshen
                        bbulkow Oct 26, 2011 08:32 AM

                        I thought I saw the rumor here. I guess it's not true.

                        Madera has kept its star. My respect for Michelin goes down. I like so much of what they do, but that's all about the room and experience and not about the food.

                  2. n
                    nocharge Oct 25, 2011 04:21 PM


                    1. p
                      plaidbowtie Oct 25, 2011 04:00 PM

                      Manresa has retained 2 stars, direct from Kinch himself. I am going to believe him.

                      Manresa Restaurant
                      320 Village Lane, Los Gatos, CA 95030

                      1. Paul H Oct 25, 2011 02:32 PM

                        Chef Crenn has announced that Atelier Crenn has received one Michelin star.

                        EDIT: And Josh Skenes reports that Saison has been promoted to two stars.

                        2124 Folsom St., San Francisco, CA 94110

                        Atelier Crenn
                        3127 Fillmore St, San Francisco, CA 94123

                        1. d
                          deepfry7 Oct 25, 2011 02:06 PM

                          Sorry, I'm seeing conflicting reports for Manresa between 2 and 3 stars. Weird.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: deepfry7
                            CarrieWas218 Oct 26, 2011 08:44 AM

                            Curious - is this a slap in the face of Manresa to not attain a Third Star and remain at Two?

                            Manresa Restaurant
                            320 Village Lane, Los Gatos, CA 95030

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