Earning a Michelin rating would make any chef or restaurant owner’s day — or year. This reputable French guidebook company awards one, two or three stars each year to the most deserving restaurants around the world.
The prestigious award is reserved for the those who have mastered quality, technique and consistency. Although there are hundreds of fabulous restaurants in the San Francisco Bay Area, the 2017 Michelin ratings include only six three-star fine dining establishments in the Bay Area.
Unlike Zagat and Yelp, Michelin doesn’t rely on consumer reviews. Michelin employs its own full-time staff of anonymous restaurant reviewers. Reviewers write up detailed accounts of their meals and then compare opinions among themselves to determine who will be awarded a star.
Michelin ratings don’t take into consideration décor, ambience or service. The focus remains exclusively on the food. What do the stars mean? Three stars means fine dining worth going out of your way for — outstanding cuisine from top-grade ingredients. You’ll find an excellent dinner always carefully prepared at a two-star Michelin-rated restaurant. A one-star rating means a very good restaurant in its category. Regardless of how many stars a restaurant receives — one, two or three — getting the nod from Michelin is a very big deal.
Sonoma County has more than its share of incredible places to eat, many emphasizing local, fresh and original food prepared to perfection. And this year, the Wine Country boasts two three-star kitchens: The French Laundry and The Restaurant at Meadowood. Although we didn’t get any two-star ratings, Sonoma and Napa counties together garnered eight single-star awards, including Terra in St. Helena, Terrapin Creek in Bodega Bay, Farmhouse Inn & Restaurant in Forestville, Auberge du Soleil in Rutherford and Bouchon in Yountville.
There are three additional single-star winners, each nearby one of our luxury vacation rentals. Next time you stay with us, be sure to make a reservation at one of these fabulous restaurants for a fine dining experience you won’t forget. Like most of the must-try Wine Country restaurants, you should make your plans early and lock in your reservation two to four weeks in advance. Enjoy!
3 Nearby Michelin-Starred Restaurants
Madrona Manor, Healdsburg
This Sonoma County fine dining experience presents exquisite cuisine in an elegant, old-world atmosphere. There wine list draws from around the globe, while Chef Mallgren’s menus are always inspired by fresh, local products.
This luxury Wine Country resort and spa also is known for its Michelin-starred restaurant. Chef Falsini serves up farm-fresh flavor and innovative dishes for a one-of-a-kind experience. The atmosphere radiates Napa California chic.
La Toque, Napa
Here you’ll enjoy stellar cuisine grounded in Chef Ken’s French tradition and an upscale California atmosphere. La Toque has also been recognized by Wine Spectator for its exceptional wine list.