If a chef leaves a starred restaurant, does the place automatically lose the rating?
Not necessarily, as a Michelin star is awarded to the restaurant itself, not the chef. In such cases, restaurants often promote sous chefs with similar talent, while others lure talented chefs from other restaurants to them in order to staff them. In such cases, we just come back to see what has changed and whether the kitchen is at the same level as it was before.
Are there specific criteria that a truly good kitchen must meet?
There is no secret or formula to expect, we are just looking for exceptionally good cuisine and food. The palette of Michelin-starred restaurants is very wide, there is innovative or classic cuisine, in some places you can choose from the menu, in others there is a la carte, and there are formal and informal places. Restaurants are different from each other and it is unlikely that anyone will like them equally. That’s good anyway. Our mission is to find and recommend places that currently represent the highest culinary standards in the world. There are many types of restaurants, and it is up to guests and readers to choose the one they prefer from the menu.
Are restaurants losing their stardom?
We prepare the guide for our readers interested in gastronomy, so we feel compelled to change our rating if a place no longer delivers the previous quality that earned it a star.
Does a restaurant have to be an official place to get a star?
One of the biggest misconceptions about our guide is that we prefer elegant and formal places: this is not true in any way. This misconception stems from the fact that the best cuisine could often be found in elegant restaurants, perhaps 30 to 40 years ago. Fortunately, this is not nearly the case nowadays, as restaurants of very different styles have stars.
What happens when they visit a restaurant and it turns out the chef isn’t there?
A famous chef was once asked who cooks when he is not in the kitchen, and he replied that it is the same people who cook when he is in the kitchen. We don’t care who prepares the food, as long as we meet the right standards. Don’t forget that the star is not awarded to the chef, but to the restaurant.
How do they feel when a chef announces that he doesn’t cook the way he does because of the rating or the Michelin guide, and it doesn’t particularly interest him?
We are very happy when we hear or read such things. Chefs who do not work exclusively for their guests, but are driven by evaluation, can never be outstanding. No one should think about the Michelin Guide when cooking: the sole goal should be to please the guests.
What other awards does Michelin offer?
At Bib Gourmand award-winning venues, we can expect high-quality cuisine at moderate prices.
The Green Star Award recognizes restaurants that are at the forefront of sustainable gastronomy.
Does the restaurant receive any feedback from inspectors?
no. We believe that restaurants should only care about guest reviews.
How much pressure does a Michelin star put on chefs?
Chefs don’t have to do anything different just because their restaurant gets a star, except try to maintain the standards that earned them that award. But, of course, there is also the fact that they get more attention after one star, which is why they often feel that expectations of them are higher.
Does the quality of the food often decline on the busiest Fridays or Saturdays when they are full?
Conversely, restaurants tend to perform better on busier days. The truth is, we also enjoy walking into a crowded restaurant. I think the big challenge for any restaurant is a cold, rainy Tuesday in January, when hardly anyone comes, and even then the usual high quality has to be served.
What advice do you have for a young chef?
- The perfect meal starts with the perfect ingredients. Get the best quality produce, whether it’s tomatoes or chicken.
- Enjoy cooking for your guests and don’t do what you do to win prizes.
- Go out to eat in other places to gain a lot of experience – but you can also taste your food again and again. Sometimes it is only while eating that one realizes that something is still not quite perfect.
the pictures: Unsplash