With each restaurant receiving a Michelin Star from the Michelin Guide culinary handbook, they will have a significant opportunity to be recognized by customers worldwide, affirming the quality and sophistication in each of their dishes. Among over 100 restaurants in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City selected by the Michelin Guide, 4 restaurants have been honored to receive Michelin star: Anan Saigon Restaurant, GIA Restaurant, Hibana by Koki Restaurant, and Tầm Vị Restaurant. So, what are Michelin Guide and Michelin Stars that make these restaurants desire this title so much?
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What is Michelin Guide?
Michelin Guide is a culinary guidebook published by the Michelin company, a leading French tire manufacturer, over a century ago. Throughout more than a century, the Michelin Guide has expanded its evaluations to the global culinary scene, using the prestigious Michelin stars rating system.
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What are Michelin Star?
As mentioned above, the Michelin Guide introduces the finest restaurants and hotels worldwide, utilizing the Michelin star rating system to assess the quality of these culinary establishments. In other words, not every restaurant featured in the Michelin Guide possesses Michelin Stars.
Michelin Stars are not just prestigious awards; they also carry great significance in the culinary industry. Michelin Stars are considered the culinary equivalent of “Grammy” in music or “Oscars” in film. For chefs and restaurant owners, receiving Michelin Stars is not only recognition of their passion and talent but also a commitment to quality and creative excellence in each dish.
How to earn Michelin Star?
To assess the quality for Michelin stars, each year anonymous inspectors visit restaurants as regular diners, silently evaluating the food quality, menu composition, service, and various other elements of the restaurant operation. These evaluations are then compiled and ranked to select the most outstanding restaurants deserving of Michelin stars. The Michelin Guide inspectors remain a mystery to the public; even their close relatives might not know about their profession to ensure the utmost secrecy and objectivity.
Each Michelin star represents a level of excellence and distinction, ranging from one star (very good in comparison to the general standard) to three stars (reaching the pinnacle of cuisine). Restaurants with three Michelin stars are considered top-tier culinary destinations where patrons experience exceptional dishes crafted by highly skilled chefs.
The Michelin Guide has the authority to award a coveted star to any restaurant, but it can also revoke previously awarded stars if the restaurant fails to maintain the expected quality standards. As a result, this intense pursuit of Michelin stars keeps fine dining enthusiasts, as well as individual chefs and food business owners, particularly intrigued and expectant.
4 Vietnamese Restaurants Awarded Michelin Star in 2023
Anan Saigon Restaurant
Address: 89 Ton That Dam, Ben Nghe Ward, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City.
Anan Saigon is a contemporary Vietnamese restaurant where head chef Peter Cuong Franklin applies modern cooking techniques combined with the flavors of Southeast Asian street food to create delicious and enticing tastes. The restaurant is renowned for its upscale interpretations of traditional Vietnamese dishes, such as a $100 banh mi sandwich, Dalat snail pizza, and taco pancakes.
Before receiving the Michelin star, Anan Saigon made its mark by winning the Best Restaurant in Vietnam award on the Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants list in both 2021 and 2023. This recognition speaks to Anan Saigon’s dedication and excellence in the culinary service industry.
Tầm Vị Restaurant
Address: 4B Yen The, Van Mieu, Dong Da, Hanoi.
This restaurant is a two-story wooden house, tranquil, with around 20 tables serving approximately 100 guests at a time. It features a classic Northern Vietnamese style, primarily offering dishes from the Northern Vietnamese cuisine. The restaurant’s ambiance evokes intimacy, utilizing old tables and chairs, bamboo chopsticks, and pairs of chopsticks.
Tầm Vị’s menu mainly presents home-style Northern Vietnamese dishes, inspired by the memories of Dong Kinh, as well as some dishes from Central and Southern regions. Additionally, the menu changes seasonally, providing diners with diverse and enjoyable experiences.
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Address: 61 Van Mieu, Dong Da, Hanoi.
GIA is a contemporary Vietnamese restaurant with chef Sam Tran, featuring a seasonal menu inspired by Vietnamese culinary heritage. The distinct characteristic of GIA lies in its meticulously presented and visually appealing dishes, highlighting the harmony of delicate flavors.
In contrast to the à la carte menu, GIA offers a Tasting Menu that takes patrons on a culinary journey through over 10 pre-set dishes paired with accompanying beverages. GIA updates its menu every three months, ensuring a fresh experience with each season and preventing repetition of dishes.
Hibana by Koki Restaurant
Address: 11 Le Phung Hieu, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi.
Hibana by Koki is the only Japanese restaurant among the four Vietnamese restaurants awarded a Michelin star. It is situated in the basement of the Capella Hotel. Headed by chef Yamaguchi, a highly experienced Teppanyaki specialist, Hibana has established itself as a premium Teppanyaki dining haven in Hanoi. The restaurant’s menu exudes sophistication, utilizing premium ingredients imported directly from Japan, such as abalone, spiny lobster, sea urchin, Yaeyama Kyori beef, and Hokkaido king crab.
The recognition of Michelin stars for these 4 restaurants in Vietnam, along with their presence in the Michelin Guide culinary handbook to be introduced to global customers, serves as a tremendous motivation not only for these restaurants but also for others in Vietnam. This recognition gives them the confidence that their efforts, dedication, and creativity will be acknowledged and rewarded in the future.