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Michelin inspection under TV spotlight


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Michelin Stars: The Madness of Perfection BBC Two, tonight at 9pm

BBC website promo: "William Sitwell investigates the passions, pressures and obsessions behind that apparently all-important description, 'Michelin-starred chef'. 'It elevates your average stove monkey to superior cheffy status; it puts you in a completely new culinary class. But how relevant is Michelin? Do we want poncey food? Or can you get a Michelin star for a good steak and chips? Is the Michelin Guide harmful in its influence? And does the path to Michelin-starred perfection lead to dangerous obsession?'"

Sitwell seeks the views of chefs (Raymond Blanc and Marco Pierre White and others) and spends a day in the kitchen with Marcus Wareing. He also sheds light on the Michelin inspectors and interviews one 'in shadow'.

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The best part was Marco kicking the shit out of the guide. He is still a legend.

The worst part was the under cover inspector who very much looked similar to Bulmer likening it to being an undercover agent, ''it's like a licence to eat''.....knobjockey.

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I think it would make more sense for Michelin to move to a five star system, with only a scattering of five stars in the whole world. It would stretch the range and mean that far more movement up and down could occur in the one to four categories without chefs committing suicide...

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The best part was Marco kicking the shit out of the guide. He is still a legend.

Do many places in the current MPW restaurant empire appear in the guide? I haven't been tempted to head for any of them, and don't recall a lot of rave reviews. This couldn't have anything to do with his view could it?

Legend may be an apt description i.e. a romanticized or popularized myth of modern times.

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The best part was Marco kicking the shit out of the guide. He is still a legend.

Do many places in the current MPW restaurant empire appear in the guide? I haven't been tempted to head for any of them, and don't recall a lot of rave reviews. This couldn't have anything to do with his view could it?

Legend may be an apt description i.e. a romanticized or popularized myth of modern times.

As strange as it may seem we met up with some friends of ours at Marco,s new Steakhouse and Grill in Chester yesterday.

I'm so far behind with my reviews that this one was to be a few weeks away, however whilst it is fresh in my mind I may write it up very soon :smile:

"So many places, so little time"

http://londoncalling...blogspot.co.uk/

@d_goodfellow1

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Yes, please, David. I was wondering if it was going to be worth the schlep. There is a Chester steakhouse thread for you to add it to.

The Chester@large restaurant forum gives it a good mention.

John Hartley

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It really didn't add anything new did it. Maybe Sitwell is a bit upset nobody really seem to take his reveiws that seriously. Maybe there a tad bit of jelousy. Thought Wearing had a couple of good points though. Stars should be maybe taken away a bit more. Is Ducasse really better than all the other 2 stars in britain?

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Re: Ducasse at the Dorchester. No, not in my opinion. It is worth one star, that's it. Well accomplished food, very good front of house, but no wow factor for me. Other than the bill.

There is an important facet that I feel is consistently missing from M* evaluations: value for money.

If M*'s were about value for money, I doubt D@D would appear in the guide at all.

However there is no doubt as far as I am concerned that the only guide to good meal that I can consistently trust is M*.

Cheers, Howard

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thats in interesting look at the guide there howard. imagine if the guide did look at value for money as well as the other stuff think how different it would look.

its probably nice being able to just open up shop and expect 3 stars but it adds nothing to it. to go somewhere where you know theyve worked themselves up to it over the years with some history will not be beaten. it just seems so much more real than commercial.

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There is an important facet that I feel is consistently missing from M* evaluations: value for money.

Howard good points.

Their web site does allow you to search by price, but it isn't that granular as >35€ is a pretty big category in London. It wouldn't be that difficult for them to refine this by adding more catagories, splitting lunch, dinner and ALC and allowing a sort by price.

Value for money could be quite tricky though because it is subjective. How about £ per star, although that makes for odd reading:

The Ledbury £23.50 per star

D@D £25 per star

RHR £30 per star

The Harwood £35 per star

Hibiscus £42.50 per star

Sketch £100 per star

Benares £122 per star

Looks like after Brett, D@D is the bargain...! Methinks this only works if Michelin include the total price of an average meal because I suspect to won't get out of D@D for only £75 per head...! But it is quite an interesting perspective. Anyone fancy a curry in Berkley Square?

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I think the only way to evaluate value for money is if you enjoyed youreself. If you have a gr8 time the bill isn't an issue generally. If you fell like youve had a bad experience for whatever reason , youre really not going to value it at all.

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anyway someone from the states can watch this? thanks

Unfortunately not unless an American channel picks this up (I don't think this is the sort of programme which would go to DVD).

The BBC make programmes like this available on BBC iPlayer for 7 days after the programme has been broadcast, but they limit access to UK IP addresses. Even if you had been able to access iPlayer this programme has gone now since it is now more than 7 days since it was broadcast.

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anyway someone from the states can watch this? thanks

Unfortunately not unless an American channel picks this up (I don't think this is the sort of programme which would go to DVD).

The BBC make programmes like this available on BBC iPlayer for 7 days after the programme has been broadcast, but they limit access to UK IP addresses. Even if you had been able to access iPlayer this programme has gone now since it is now more than 7 days since it was broadcast.

But for future reference you may be able to get BBCi Player to work in the US by going through a UK based proxy server, which will spoof it. If not, normally someone will youtube or P2P it , have a Google.

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