This State Now Has More Michelin Starred-Restaurants Than Any Other in the U.S.

Michelin’s first statewide guide awarded 34 California restaurants with new stars this week, bringing the Golden State’s total to 90.

This State Now Has More Michelin Starred-Restaurants Than Any Other in the U.S.

Somni, a 10-seat chef’s table inside The Bazaar by José Andrés at the SLS Hotel Beverly Hills, earned two Michelin stars in the first California state guide.

Photo by Frank Wanho Lee

With 76 starred restaurants in its current Michelin guide, New York City still holds the title of the U.S. city with the most Michelin stars. But now California is officially the state with the most Michelin stars in the nation.

At a live event in Huntington Beach, California, on Monday evening, the influential food guide awarded 34 restaurants with new stars in the 2019 Michelin Guide California—its first ever statewide guide—bringing California’s total to 90 starred-restaurants.

While Michelin has had a San Francisco Bay Area and Wine Country Guide since 2007, the new guide marks the first time restaurants in Sacramento, Monterey, Santa Barbara, San Diego, and Orange County areas were considered.

Most notably, the 2019 California Guide marks the return of Michelin-rated restaurants to Los Angeles, after the city’s guide folded amid the recession in 2009. Of the 27 restaurants that earned new one-star distinctions, 18 of them are located in Los Angeles, while six of the seven new two-star restaurants are based in Los Angeles, including Vespertine, Urasawa, Sushi Ginza Onodera, Somni, Providence, and n/naka.

Chef Niki Nakayama earned two stars for her kaiseki restaurant, n/naka, in Los Angeles.

Chef Niki Nakayama earned two stars for her kaiseki restaurant, n/naka, in Los Angeles.

Courtesy of Michelin

Despite dominating the list of new starred restaurants, Los Angeles earned no three-star distinctions. The Sacramento, San Diego, and Monterey areas only earned one one-star restaurant each, and Santa Barbara was shut out entirely from receiving stars, even though its restaurants were considered for the guide. Two Orange County restaurants, including Taco Maria and Hana Re Sushi, earned one star each. The San Francisco Bay Area and surrounding wine country—which is now folded into the statewide guide—still holds claim to all seven restaurants with three Michelin stars in California, including Atelier Crenn, Quince, and Benu in San Francisco, Manresa in Los Gatos, and French Laundry, SingleThread, and Restaurant at Meadowood in wine country. (After being awarded three stars in November 2018, San Francisco’s Saison was demoted back to two stars this week after the departure of chef and co-owner Joshua Skenes.)

The 2019 Michelin Guide California goes on sale in bookstores and online this Thursday, but for now here are all 34 restaurants that earned new stars in the 2019 Michelin Guide California:

New Two-Star Restaurants

  • Campton Place, San Francisco
  • n/naka, Los Angeles
  • Providence, Los Angeles
  • Somni, Beverly Hills
  • Sushi Ginza Onodera, West Hollywood
  • Urasawa, Beverly Hills
  • Vespertine, Culver City

New One-Star Restaurants

  • Addison, San Diego
  • Angler, San Francisco
  • Aubergine, Carmel-by-the-Sea
  • Bistro Na, Temple City
  • CUT, Beverly Hills
  • Dialogue, Santa Monica
  • Hana Re, Costa Mesa
  • Harbor House, Los Angeles
  • Hayato, Los Angeles
  • Kali, Los Angeles
  • Kato, Los Angeles
  • The Kitchen, Sacramento
  • Le Comptoir, Los Angeles
  • Maude, Beverly Hills
  • Maum, Palo Alto
  • Mori Sushi, Los Angeles
  • Nozawa Bar, Beverly Hills
  • Orsa & Winston, Los Angeles
  • Osteria Mozza, Los Angeles
  • Q Sushi, Los Angeles
  • Rustic Canyon, Santa Monica
  • Shibumi, Los Angeles
  • Shin Sushi, Los Angeles
  • Shunji, Los Angeles
  • Sorrel, San Francisco
  • Taco Maria, Costa Mesa
  • Trois Mec, Los Angeles

>> Next: This Bistro Was Just Voted the Best New Restaurant in the United States

Lyndsey Matthews is the senior commerce editor at AFAR who covers travel gear, packing advice, and points and loyalty.
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