The complete list of Michelin star ratings for France was announced today in the 2013 edition of the Michelin Guide. And it matches up with the leak from last week: There's a brand new three-star restaurant in La Vague d'Or, a Saint-Tropez restaurant helmed by the 35-year old chef Arnaud Donckele. La Vague d'Or increases the total of three-star restaurants in France to 27.
France is now tied with Japan in the number of three-star restaurants at 27. Earlier this year Tokyo was awarded 15 3-star restaurants and the 2013 guide to western Japan awarded 12. Update: Add the Michelin Guide to Hokkaido with four three-star restaurants, and Japan is still on top with 31 three-star Michelin restaurants.
In addition, there are five new two-star restaurants: Yoann Conte (in Veyrier-du-Lac), La Table du Kilimandjaro (in Courchevel), William Frachot (at Le Chapeau Rouge in Dijon), La Marine (in Noirmoutier), and Auberge du Pont d'Acigné (in Noyal-sur-Vilaine). A whopping 39 restaurants got their first star, bringing the total number of one star restaurants in France to 487. A notable new one-star restaurant is three-star chef Anne-Sophie Pic's first Paris restaurant La Dame de Pic. (one of the hottest Fall 2012 openings in Paris).
And now for the bad news: Alain Chapel (in Mionnay) and L'Espadon (in Paris) lost their two stars. Three restaurants were demoted from two stars to one: Le Saint-James (in Bordeaux), Restaurant des Rois (in Beaulieu-sur-Mer), and Bigarrade (in Paris). And 35 restaurants were demoted from one star to zero.
Below, the press release and the full list of stars:
2013 Michelin France
The MICHELIN guide France 2013 confirms that French gourmet cooking continues to deliver consistent value, in France and around the world
Available March 1 in stores as well as on the Internet and cellphones (via the MICHELIN Restaurants website and mobile applications), the 2013 edition of the MICHELIN guide is a showcase for French excellence in gourmet dining and hospitality. It lists 8,768 establishments, of which 4,461 hotels and guesthouses and 4,282 restaurants.
Faithfully reflecting France's skills and unique expertise in the art of cooking, the 2013 selection features a new 3* restaurants, La Vague d'Or, at Résidence de la Pinède in Saint-Tropez, where chef Arnaud Donckele, only 35-years-old and trained in some of the most prestigious restaurants, has succeeded in creating a highly-personalized style of cuisine, a rare achievement accomplished by just a handful of chefs around the world.
"Arnaud Donckele's cuisine provides diners with a unique, unforgettable experience," says Michael Ellis, International Director of the MICHELIN guides. "His fish dishes are highly original and he has personally sought out local producers to find the highest quality ingredients. Overall, he meets all the criteria for a third star."
As further proof of the dynamism and very high quality of French gastronomy, the MICHELIN guide also includes 5 new 2* restaurants: Yoann Conte in Veyrier-du-Lac and La Table du Kilimandjaro in Courchevel – both in the Savoy Alps – William Frachot in Dijon, La Marine in L'Herbaudière in the Vendée, and Auberge du Pont d'Acigné in Noyal-sur-Vilaine, Brittany. There are also 39 new 1* restaurants, for a total of 596 starred restaurants. The selection also includes 632 Bib Gourmand restaurants, of which 98 newly chosen.
Always on the lookout for outstanding new restaurants, the guide's inspectors travel throughout France. Every day, they test all sorts of restaurants – brasseries, bistros and small eateries as well as truly outstanding establishments – that serve all styles of cuisine: French, Italian, Asian, contemporary and traditional. Dining anonymously like ordinary customers, they systematically pay their own bills. But as specialists in haute cuisine, they evaluate each dish according to five criteria: product quality, the chef's personality as revealed through his or her cuisine, preparation and flavors, value for money, and consistency over time and across the entire menu. The best restaurants are awarded the Bib Gourmand label or stars, distinctions that are based solely on cooking quality and are always attributed on a consensus basis. Comfort and service are rated separately on a scale ranging from 1 to 3.
The inspectors' extensive fieldwork has proven that French gourmet cuisine delivers consistent value. Today's chefs prepare their products using authentic, time-tested methods and show more restraint in their dishes while deploying a cooking style that is both traditional and resolutely modern. This consistent value is also reflected in the fact that French restaurants attract more and more foreign chefs, eager to master the secrets of France's very high-quality cuisine. What's more, these chefs often export France's cooking style to other countries, thereby enhancing the prestige of French gastronomy around the world.
For more than a century, the MICHELIN guide collection has been committed to making life easier for travelers by providing them with a selection of the best restaurants, hotels and guesthouses around the world. Today, the 24 MICHELIN guides cover 23 countries on three continents.