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So much for predictions :(

How the food at Sat Bains is only considered 1* is beyond me. The meal I had there was one of the best i've had all year! But then again we say the same thing every year!

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Typical damp squib. What a snoozefest.

It really makes you wonder how many visits they made in Ireland.

Surely there should have been more Bibs. Have they even heard of Alexis and Harry's Bar?

Shame for Deanes, Will be interesting to see how Derek Creagh (former head chef of Deanes) progresses during the year at The Salty Dog, his new venture.


Corinna Hardgrave aka "Corinna Dunne"

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So much for predictions :(

How the food at Sat Bains is only considered 1* is beyond me. The meal I had there was one of the best i've had all year! But then again we say the same thing every year!

There is still an inherent anti-British bias in Michelin....and whatever Michelin 'officially' say the 2 and 3* are only given the go ahead on Paris's say so.

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I note that Michelin do not have such reservations in dishing out 2/3 stars in other parts of the world though, but i'm sure that's nothing to do with not wanting to upset locals in a new region of the world..

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Was at the Bingham in Richmond between Christmas and New Year....very decent lunch...as it should be at £240 between the 4 of us excluding drinks.

Food not a patch on La Potiniere in Gullane near Edinburgh though. I doubt if the inspectors could even find Gullane on a map let alone bother going to visit.

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I am surprised no one has commented on Gordo's achievement to get a star at Petrus. It was super value at lunch given its status, on our visit, but was rather staid food wise.

Seems a few people have been unimpressed.

I,m disappointed for Koffmanns. However there have been inconsistant reviews, so that, is almost certainly why no star.

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No star at Claridges for gordo though

Is Petersham Nurseries a.. garden centre?

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I am surprised no one has commented on Gordo's achievement to get a star at Petrus. It was super value at lunch given its status, on our visit, but was rather staid food wise.

Seems a few people have been unimpressed.

I,m disappointed for Koffmanns. However there have been inconsistent reviews, so that, is almost certainly why no star.

I doubt it's down to reviews David. It didn't stop Michelin launching Ducasse in at 2 and promoting him to 3 but a year later. I think we're all aware there probably wasn't a decent review for the Dorchester on launch. We'll never truly know, but if I had to venture a guess I think Koffmann's issue is probably timing. It only launched in September. Michelin don't inspect in December as they allow for the Xmas crush and the effect this may have. I suspect 3 months isn't enough time - in their world - to decide if the restaurant was operating consistently.

Speaking of the year Ducasse opened, they also elevated Robuchon and there was a bias-outcry at the time. Now Darroze is yet another French export who seems to... scratch that, HAS received a very favourable promotion. I think Jay Rayner nailed it on his almost immediate on-line Guardian article in response to today's announcement where he basically called Michelin out, claiming they've lost all credibility as a result. I shan't repeat names already mentioned, but I'm of the opinion there are some incredible British chef's who have the right to be extremely pissed right now... There's an almost Bush administration-like policy around Michelin where, certainly in terms of the British public, they seem to think they can continue fobbing us all off (at the expense of our home-grown talent) and get away with it. I used to be a big fan of the 'M', but today I lost faith quicker than the Hollywood elite in Ricky Gervais...


Edited by marcusjames (log)

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Deanes may be due to the flood and closure it experienced early in the year. Shame though.

Good to see the Ribble Valley growing as a foodie destination with both La Locanda and The Freemasons getting a bib

both well deserved!!

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I,m disappointed for Koffmanns.

Me too for him, but happy for myself as a star might have fuelled price inflation. Had another really bloody good dinner there last night.

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Is Petersham Nurseries a.. garden centre?

It is indeed. Have looked at the place a few times and even bought one of Skye Gingells books, although it was on a heavily discounted rate. Some of the recipes appeal although I have not been that keen to cook any myself. I am intrigued as the pricing is a little on the heavy side. She does have her fair share of fans though, (including Michelin)

Still having said all that I phoned earlier on to enquire about a weekend table and they are booked up a bit in advance from when they reopen in February.

Petersham

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Patronising, pompous and tedious....and thats just Jay Rayner..

'Likewise are we really in a world when the beige, by-the-numbers, shoot-me-now tedium of the relaunched Petrus does get elevated?'

My God its a hard life as a restaurant critic lol...

To be fair though his article is mostly correct,it does seem that being a French chef is a pre-requisite to appear in the Michelin guide.

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I thought Tony's article was better. The problem with WoM articles is that success seems to be measured by the number of responses so lots of tabloid style articles. If you read the comments many, if not most, are from people who hate poncy food thus dislike Michelin. It is a "class war" with much inverted snobbery, I assume that is bang on with the Guardians demographic and thus hits the spot from an editorial perspective. I also thought William Sitwell's "Michelin Stars: The Madness of Perfection" was in a similar vein, although interestingly the premise he presents at the start of the programme then confirms in the conclusion doesn't seem to be supported by many of the interviews; again the tyranny of having to appeal to the masses?

I am intrigued by the allegation of French bias. Is it simply a correlation without any real causal link? Or is the real reason that there are, and always have been a lot of talented French chefs, working in the UK so the talent correlates with the number of stars, rather than Michelin having an innate bias? If we look back a few decades a lot of British food heritage seems to be French - the Roux's, Koffman, Blanc etc. So why shouldn't this trend continue, after all the UK must be seen as a lucrative market when compared to the highly competitive market in France (after all emerging markets are usually more attractive than mature ones). I also thought it interesting that Jay's list of the places they missed seems to have quite a few non-english chefs: Koffmann's, Launceston Place, L'Anima and Bistro Bruno Loubet.


Edited by PhilD (log)

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Phil - I think the French bias accusation come from scenarios such as Wareing remaining on 1 star for 5 years longer than was deserved. Or the likes of Wishart, Tom Kitchen, Simon Rogan, Sat Bains and more stuck on 1, yet Darroze, where the general consensus seems to be mediocre across the board, gets elevated in the space of 2/3 years. And this, of course, comes off the back of the aforementioned Robuchon / Ducasse 2 star launches, followed by the latters immediate promotion to 3, again in the face of wide-spread criticism (much of it underpinned by users of this board I might add). Infact, did Ducasse himself not publicly declare he felt Michelin were a lot more stringent here compared to France?

In short: can we all be so wrong, yet Michelin so right?

Is it just me or does anyone else feel there's a massive irony at play here? For an organisation whose watchword is broadly founded on consistency, it appears to be the last thing they themselves are. It would help if they dropped the veil of convenient secrecy and mapped out a fully transparent criteria of how their decisions are reached. It's actually hard to think what possible reason they have not to do this.

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Typical damp squib. What a snoozefest.

Shame for Deanes, Will be interesting to see how Derek Creagh (former head chef of Deanes) progresses during the year at The Salty Dog, his new venture.

The Salty Dog is a lovely airy and bright room to eat in (with great views over Belfast lough), but the menu is far far too pricey for somewhere that's not even on the map yet. We thought the food was accomplished (but fairly run of the mill stuff), but the service lets the place down and is far too laidback, clumsy and at times patronising. Food very slow at leaving the kitchen even when the place is quiet and staff generally oblivious to any and everything that's going on around them.

The owner's Bill Wolsey (is there anywhere he doesn't own now?) but it's leased out in true Bill Wolsey fashion. The tenants are unheard of and Derek Creagh's an employee, so it'll be interesting to see whether he rides the storm through the notoriously quiet Winter months in Bangor-by-the-sea.

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