The story of Michelin restaurants guide and their stars

19 May 2023

As often happens in life and business, Michelin guide started its glorious path pretty spontaneous with an interesting idea and creativity of small entrepreneurs from France.

In 1889. brothers Andre and Edouard Michelin have started their own company in tire business in central part of France in town Clermont – Ferrand! At the time, the market for tires industry was not that big since there were only 3000 cars in whole country.

Thinking about the possibilities of how to improve the sales and expand business they came up with an idea to make a some kind of Guide for the car and motorcycle owners where many road information can be found easily: gas stations, maps, tire change spots and instructions….and, at the end, they also included the best places where people can stop by, rest and eat some good food.

‘’A little red guide’’, and today the most famous restaurants guide in the world, primarily was conceived to simply motivate as much people as possible to take the road and visit many different places, locations and restaurants, hoping that these journeys can improve their tire sales. The project was relatively successful and up until 1920. the Michelin Guide was totally free.

Just then there was an incredible twist that will take the whole story to a legendary level! In that 1920., entering some tire shop, Andre Michelin accidentally saw a scene that will change the history of gastronomy – his beloved guides that took so many years of effort and hard work were used to hold the working bench in the shop, like some old garbage newspapers! That event made him change the complete business strategy for the Guide. Knowing that ‘’People respect only what they pay for’’ they have created a completely new MICHELIN GUIDE launched in 1920. by the price of 7 Francs and it contained mostly Paris hotels and restaurants divided into certain categories.

Encouraged by great success in the next few years Michelin brothers during 1926. have introduced a popular stars for restaurants as well as the team of ‘’mysterious inspectors’’ that visit restaurants anonymously and rate their food and cuisine. It can be considered as a start of famous Michelin stars!

Until today, there were 30 million of Michelin guides sold all over the world and it represents a true map of gastronomic pearls and the holy grail for all hedonism enthusiasts!

Since we can hear and read a lot about chefs winning the stars, essentially it is not true; the stars are given exclusively to restaurants that have an incredible cuisine that satisfies certain rigorous criteria assessed by mysterious inspectors that visit restaurants without announcement and in secrecy.

Today in the world there are 2817 restaurants that have at least one Michelin star and only 113 restaurants holding 3 stars (26 of them are located in France).

Also, it is important to mention that Michelin inspectors rate only the food served based on 5 different criteria and not considering the restaurant ambiance or service. Those criteria are:

- Quality of used ingredients

- Mastery of the flavors and creativity of cooking

- Personality of the chef in cuisine

- Price and quality ratio

- Consistency of quality between visits

In Montenegro and Serbia there are no restaurants with Michelin stars while there are 7 in Croatia with one star. Some of them are: Restaurant 360 Dubrovnik, Monte in Rovinj, Draga di Lovrana, Noel in Zagreb and Peligrini in Sibenik.

Created by and team!

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