San Francisco Retains "Culinary Crown" With New Michelin Honors

The recent 2023 Michelin Guide California awards revealed that San Francisco remains the "culinary capital of the Golden State." The city has 27 Michelin-starred restaurants, while the San Francisco Bay Area is now home to 50 of the 87 California restaurants awarded Michelin stars.

Two San Francisco restaurants—Aphotic, a restaurant specializing in sustainable and dry-aged seafood, and Nari, a Thai restaurant—earned their first Michelin stars, as all of the city’s previously awarded two- and three-star restaurants retained their honors. Aphotic also earned a Michelin Green Star for its commitment to sustainability. Altogether, San Francisco is home to half of the state’s three-star Michelin restaurants and five of its 12 two-star establishments, plus three of its 15 Green Star restaurants.

Michelin also recognized the city’s rising culinary talent for the second year in a row. Chef Harrison Cheney, the executive chef at Sons & Daughters, received the Michelin Young Chef Award, which was awarded to Chef David Yoshimura of San Francisco’s Nisei the previous year.

San Francisco Michelin Guide_Kelly Puleio - Aphotic
Aphotic specializes in sustainable and dry-aged seafood (Kelly Puleio/Aphotic)

“For a small city only seven-by-seven square miles, San Francisco is one of the world’s great gastronomic hubs,” said Joe D’Alessandro, president and CEO of the San Francisco Travel Association. “We are thrilled to see the city’s incredible culinary scene recognized again by Michelin.”

The wider San Francisco Bay Area also shined with new stars. Calistoga’s Auro and Carmel-by-the-Sea’s Chez Noir each earned one Michelin Star, while Pomet in Oakland was honored with a Green Star.

John Schafer of Healdsburg’s SingleThread was recognized with the Michelin Outstanding Service Award, and John Haffey of Carmel-by-the-Sea’s Aubergine was presented with the Michelin Sommelier Award.

Earlier this month, Michelin added four Bay Area restaurants to its Bib Gourmand roster, which recognizes restaurants with great food at an affordable price point. The additions include San Francisco’s Bansang, Oakland’s Snail Bar and Bombera, and San Jose’s Petiscos. In all, 16 San Francisco restaurants are designated Bib Gourmands and 70 are included as Michelin Selects in the 2023 Michelin California guide.

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