Michelin Guide is coming to California: here’s what that means

Come June of this year, the famed Michelin Guide, which has been reliably guiding gastronomy travel for over a century, will launch its first ever regional U.S edition when it comes to California.

Announced early last month, Michelin and Visit California teamed up to charter this unprecedented expansion, prepping the Michelin Guide California 2019 which builds on existing guides in the San Francisco Bay Area and Wine Country. Other current U.S guides include ones for New York, Chicago, and Washington D.C, but never before has an entire U.S state been on the plate.

Basically, what this means is that a whole bunch of Cali restaurants are about to get Michelin stars (or Bib Gourmand recommendations), which should have a huge impact on the dining scene throughout the state as well as tourism from food enthusiasts around the world.

This new guide will include restaurants in greater Los Angeles, Monterey, Orange County, Sacramento, San Diego and Santa Barbara. It seems Michelin inspectors have been busy secretly scurrying all over these fine destinations to mark restaurants with those coveted 1-3 stars.

Budget travellers will also find great interest here, as the guide also means that Bib Gourmand will have a greater presence in California. Bib Gourmand is similar to Michelin but with a strict focus on affordable dining. Those who have travelled to places like Thailand and Singapore before should be very familiar with it.

“With access to many of the world’s best farms, food producers and vineyards, California cuisine is respected worldwide not only for the quality of its ingredients but also due to the creativity displayed by its chefs”, said Gwendal Poullennec, International Director of the Michelin Guides. “In addition, our inspectors have been impressed with the talent and innovation within the gastronomic community across the state. Michelin’s partnership combines Visit California’s strength in tourism with Michelin’s 120-plus years of experience in gastronomy.”

Michelin will reveal the 2019 star selection in the inaugural California Guide during a special event scheduled in the summer, with the Bib Gourmand selection announced a few days prior.

So if you’re planning a trip to the U.S West Coast post-June, watch this space very closely.

Chris Singh

Chris Singh is the Deputy-Editor-At-Large of the AU review, loves writing about travel and hospitality, and is partial to a perfectly textured octopus. You can reach him on Instagram: @chrisdsingh.

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