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News & Views 3 minutes 08 December 2020

These Are The Newly Starred Restaurants In The MICHELIN Guide Tokyo 2021

With 446 restaurants listed – including 2 new restaurants with Three Stars, 2 with Two Stars and 18 with One Star – as well as 34 hotels and ryokans, the Japanese capital continues to be one of the most dynamic and attractive destinations in the world for food and hospitality.

Tokyo Japan

Michelin is pleased to unveil the selection of hotels and restaurants that make up the MICHELIN Guide Tokyo 2021. With 446 restaurants listed – including 2 new restaurants with Three Stars, 2 with Two Stars and 18 with One Star – as well as 34 hotels and ryokans, the Japanese capital continues to be one of the most dynamic and attractive destinations in the world for food and hospitality.

Watch the livestream of the MICHELIN Guide Tokyo 2021 MICHELIN Star Revelation Ceremony

This 14th edition of the MICHELIN Guide Tokyo also includes a new distinction: the MICHELIN Green Star. Introduced in January 2020 in the MICHELIN Guide France and rolled out since then in no fewer than eight international editions of the MICHELIN Guide, the MICHELIN Green Star helps users easily identify role-model restaurants that are particularly committed to sustainable gastronomy.

This new selection reflects the field work carried out by the Guide’s inspectors and their in-depth research into the sustainable initiatives and virtuous practices being deployed.

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The restaurants awarded the MICHELIN Green Star advocate a powerful and inspiring vision that serves as an example for both the general public and their industry peers.

“Tokyo has always figured prominently in the MICHELIN Guide collection, as our inspectors have continually been impressed by the level of gastronomic excellence achieved by the city’s restaurants,” commented Gwendal Poullennec, International Director of the MICHELIN Guides.

“Despite the health crisis, which has been met by chefs with unwavering commitment and tenacity, this year's MICHELIN Guide selection continues to reflect the vitality and diversity of the local culinary scene and notably includes two new Three Star restaurants. Another significant change this year is the first-time attribution of the MICHELIN Green Star to six Tokyo-based restaurants for their admirable, avant-garde initiatives in favor of sustainable gastronomy.”

The interiors of Sazenka, the first Chinese restaurant in Tokyo to be awarded Three Stars
The interiors of Sazenka, the first Chinese restaurant in Tokyo to be awarded Three Stars

Two New Restaurants Awarded Three Stars

The first Chinese restaurant in Tokyo to be awarded Three Stars, Sazenka, led by Chef Tomoya Kawada, offers a unique dining experience that combines traditional Chinese flavors with Japanese techniques. The pheasant soup is a perfect example of this successful fusion, with the recipe attesting to the chef’s mastery of dashi preparation, while the pigeon dishes pay a glowing tribute to the Japanese technique of cooking over a charcoal grill.

L’Effervescence, which earned its first Star back in 2012 and its second in 2015, has also been promoted to the Three Star selection. A haven of peace in the center of the city, this restaurant serves a unique style of cuisine where French influences accentuate the flavors of the top-quality local ingredients meticulously selected by Chef Shinobu Namae. Our inspectors were also impressed with the Sowa-ryu tea ceremony, which is performed at the end of the meal.

Tokyo now has 12 Three Star restaurants.

Kutan is one of the newly awarded Two Star restaurants in the 2021 edition of the Tokyo guide
Kutan is one of the newly awarded Two Star restaurants in the 2021 edition of the Tokyo guide

Two New Restaurants Achieve Two Star Status

Kutan takes a sophisticated approach to Japanese cuisine, enhanced by ingredients sourced directly by the chef from producers he meets with regularly. Our inspectors particularly appreciated the nimono, with its subtle but flavorsome stock, as well as the creativeness of the tsukuri. Sushi Kanesaka offers an extremely refined omakase experience, with a strong focus on adapting to its diners’ preferences. Here, Edomae-sushi is prepared in strict compliance with tradition, resulting in a remarkable balance between the sushi rice, the topping and the wasabi. Designed by a carpenter specialized in religious buildings and reminiscent of a traditional tea ceremony room, the restaurant’s architecture adds to its charm.

These two new additions bring the number of Two Star restaurants in Tokyo to 42.

Au Deco offers classic French cuisine prepared by a Japanese chef who learned classic cuisine at an auberge in Hakone.
Au Deco offers classic French cuisine prepared by a Japanese chef who learned classic cuisine at an auberge in Hakone.

Another 18 Restaurants Earn Their First Star

New additions to the MICHELIN Guide Tokyo 2021 include no fewer than 18 restaurants selected for the first time ever. Some of the new One Star restaurants specialize in sushi (Hato, Sushiya Shota, Sushi Murayama, Sushi Sugaya), while others focus on Chinese cuisine (Itsuka, ShinoiS, Series). The selection also includes four restaurants that serve noteworthy dishes with a French influence (L’Intemporel, Makiyaki Ginza Onodera, Au Deco, Esterre) and one that offers diners a taste of Italy (Faro). Japanese cuisine also has its strong ambassadors, thanks to restaurants like Juko, Shigematsu, Oryori Katsushi, Onarimon Haru, Azabu Wakei and Akasaka Ogino.

These new names join the 140 restaurants that have kept their Star, bringing the total One Star selection to 158 restaurants in the MICHELIN Guide Tokyo 2021.

Moroccan cuisine makes its first entrance to the Tokyo guide this year with the recognition of Bib Gourmand restaurant Enrique Marruecos
Moroccan cuisine makes its first entrance to the Tokyo guide this year with the recognition of Bib Gourmand restaurant Enrique Marruecos

Six Restaurants Commended For Their Sustainable Approach To Gastronomy

The MICHELIN Green Star has been awarded for the first time to six Tokyo-based restaurants whose initiatives demonstrate a particularly strong commitment to a more sustainable gastronomy. L’Effervescence is one of the restaurants selected, alongside Lature, Florilège, NARISAWA, Sincère and Quintessence. Whether they’re engaged in reducing waste, shrinking their environmental impact, preserving natural resources, protecting endangered species or supporting local, environmentally responsible producers, all these restaurants embody an inspiring and virtuous vision that Michelin is eager to recognize and reward.

The MICHELIN Guide Tokyo also includes 234 Bib Gourmand restaurants, including 35 new finds, and 34 hotels and ryokans, of which 7 are new. A total of 38 different styles of cuisine are represented by the 446 featured restaurants, with Moroccan cuisine making its first appearance in the Guide this year thanks to Bib Gourmand restaurant Enrique Marruecos.

The MICHELIN Guide Tokyo 2021 at a glance:

  • 12 Three Star restaurants (of which 2 new)
  • 42 Two Star restaurants (of which 2 new)
  • 158 One Star restaurants (of which 18 new)
  • 234 Bib Gourmand restaurants (of which 35 new)
  • 6 MICHELIN Green Star restaurants
  • 34 hotels and ryokans (of which 7 new) 

  • Browse the full selection of restaurants in the MICHELIN Guide Tokyo 2021 here.

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