French restaurant L'Osier enters the three-star echelon, while 3 new two-star and 29 new one-star restaurants cement Tokyo's position as the city with the highest number of starred restaurants in the world.
The MICHELIN Guide Tokyo 2019 has just been launched and this edition sees one new three-star restaurant, three new two-star and 29 new one-star restaurants, in addition to 44 new Bib Gourmand establishments. This tally of new distinctions cements Tokyo's position as one of the world's leading dining destinations, as it continues to offer something for all visitors and locals, from high level gastronomic experiences to good value eateries.
The interior of new three-starred restaurant L'Osier (Pic: L'Osier)
French fine dining restaurant L'Osier in Chuo-ku was promoted to three Michelin stars, to recognise chef Olivier Chaignon's elegant cuisine that marries seasonal ingredients from Japan and France. Sushi restaurant Kobikicho Tomoki enters directly into the two-star category this year while French establishment Nabeno-Ism in Taito-ku and sushi-ya Harutaka in Chuo-ku have been promoted to two stars.
This edition also sees a number of firsts: Ryukyu Chinese Dining Tama has become the first Okinawa Ryori restaurant selected, and Onigiri cuisine – white rice formed into triangular or cylindrical shapes and often wrapped in nori – makes its first appearance in the Guide with the addition of Onigiri Asakusa Yadoroku.
The addition of a new one star Ramen restaurant, Sobahouse Kinirohototogisu, means it becomes the third one-starred ramen restaurant in Tokyo – the only city that has ramen restaurants with Michelin stars. A total of 73 restaurants have been added to the MICHELIN Guide Tokyo 2019, reflecting the dynamism of the dining scene in Tokyo.
Gwendal Poullennec, International Director of the MICHELIN Guides, comments: “Michelin publishes the Guide in many of the world’s major cities but Tokyo is just extraordinary due to the variety of cuisine on offer, both Japanese and international, and its huge number of starred and Bib Gourmand establishments. I have no doubt that this fact alone will encourage tourists to continue to visit Tokyo to experience the vibrant culinary scene. This diversity of cuisine types and restaurant styles mean it is a great pleasure for our team of inspectors to continue to seek out and introduce our readers to the many high quality, and good value options, that the city has to offer.”
An onigiri specialty restaurant, Onigiri Asakusa Yadoroku, has entered the guide for the first time. (Pic: Onigiri Asakusa Yadoroku Facebook)
In this, the 12th edition of the Tokyo Guide, there are a total of 484 restaurants plus 35 establishments offering accommodation. With this launch, Tokyo also retains its position as the city with the highest number of starred restaurants in the world, with 230.
This edition also marks a milestone for four establishments that have held three stars in every edition for maintaining the highest standards of cooking, creativity and consistency since its inception: Kanda (Japanese, in Minato-ku); Quintessence (French, in Shinagawa-ku); Joël Robuchon (French, in Meguro-ku); and Sukiyabashi Jiro Honten (Sushi, in Chuo-ku).
MICHELIN Guide Tokyo 2019 selection summary:
13 three star restaurants (1 new)
52 two star restaurants (3 new)
165 one star restaurants (29 new)
254 Bib Gourmand restaurants (44 new)
2 Ryokans and 33 hotels (2 new)
Rachel Tan is the Associate Digital Editor at the MICHELIN Guide Digital. A former food magazine writer based in Singapore, she has a degree in communications for journalism but is a graduate of the school of hard knocks in the kitchen. She writes to taste life twice.
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