Michelin, the famous (or infamous) French restaurant guide has been branching out lately. Two years ago, Tokyo became the first Asian city to be visited by the star-giving gourmet food experts. This year, Tokyo received more stars than any other city. For those unfamiliar with the Michelin rating system: 1 star means your restaurant is awesome, two means it is unbelievably awesome, and three means you provide nothing less than orgasmic gourmet experience.
Hong Kong and Macau became the second Asian destination for Michelin. Two restaurants received the coveted three star rating, while two dozen others received one or two stars.
In the US and Europe, a Michelin star can make a chef’s career. The fame doesn’t yet translate in the Pacific Rim. But gourmet cuisine is definitely on the rise in Hong Kong. I hope the coming of Michelin doesn’t change the culinary atmosphere there. What would the city be without the chaotic dim sum joints, the hidden away seafood restaurants, and tiny noodle shops? The whole “food as art” thing has its place. There is nothing wrong with it. But if everyone suddenly goes gourmet, Hong Kong would lose its wild restaurant culture. If that happens, then the whole territory might as well just break off and sink into the South China Seas.