First Ever Live Launch of the Michelin Guide Great Britain & Ireland


For the very first time, the iconic Michelin Guides revealed their Star holders live at a dazzling ceremony at IET London, Savoy Place. I was fortunate to attend the launch of the Michelin Guide Great Britain & Ireland 2017, in the company of some of the UK’s best chefs and to find out the winners in real time.

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Before the awards, we enjoyed drinks from two of the sponsors, S.Pellegrino and Nespresso – if the drink on the right looks suspiciously like an Irish coffee, it’s actually a blend of two specialty coffees, honest!

michelin_ceremony_londonClaire Dorland-Clauzel, member of the Executive Board of the Michelin Group, then introduced the awards and thanked the Michelin Guide partners including Book a Table, Infiniti luxury cars, S.Pellegrino and Veuve Clicquot. Next, Michael Ellis, International Director of the Michelin Guides spoke about the importance of consistency worldwide and of the guide reflecting new dining trends. However, the speeches were short and to the point as everyone was excited for the main event…the big reveal of the iconic Michelin Stars.

The ceremony kicked off with two new Special Recognition awards, the first being the Great Britain & Ireland Michelin Female Chef Award 2017. Jo Thornton, Chief Executive Officer of Veuve Clicquot UK explained that their champagne house owes its success to a woman, Madame Clicquot. Clare Smyth MBE, the first female British chef to hold and retain three Michelin Stars, was the winner. She’s planning to open her own restaurant in West London next year.

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The second special award, the Michelin Welcome and Service Award 2017 was sponsored by Nespresso and presented by Francisco Nogueira, Market Director. It was won by the front of house team at Peel’s at Hampton Manor. Before revealing the twenty new Michelin-Starred restaurants, we found out which ones had retained their stars. Each chef was handed a white jacket to wear on stage, whilst they were presented with their award. The atmosphere in the room was buzzing as each recipient accepted their award. We’ve enjoyed meals at Angler, Bohemia, Lords of the Manor, Ocean at The Atlantic, Ormer and Outlaws at the Capital, Pied à Terre and Seven Park Place, so was pleased to see that they had retained their Michelin Stars. Heston Blumenthal seemed delighted to have regained three stars for The Fat Duck.

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The presentation of the twenty new Michelin-Starred restaurants was fast and furious, with two pubs picking up new awards, The Crown at Burchetts Green in Berkshire and The Wild Rabbit in Oxfordshire. As you can see, the winners were joined on stage by a very special guest, none other than the Michelin Man himself…

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And I was lucky to meet him before the ceremony and to get a hug. After that, everyone wanted one – from him, not from me ;-). Of course, Michelin is also known as a tyre company in addition to publishing travel, hotel and restaurant guides.

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Certain areas of the country fared particularly well, including the Lake District, with two new Michelin Stars: Forest Side and Gilpin Hotel, and Wales with Sosban & The Old Butchers in Anglesey as well as James Sommerin in Penarth. There’s also a new two Michelin Star restaurant: Raby Hunt at Summerhouse, near Darlington. Self-taught chef James Close cooks contemporary, unfussy dishes. As for London, two long-standing restaurants were rewarded with a Michelin star: Veeraswamy, the capital’s oldest Indian restaurant and The Ritz Restaurant. Both received rapturous applause from their fellow chefs – it’s heart-warming to see the mutual respect at play. Their were some hot newcomers rewarded with a coveted Star including Ellory, The Five Fields and The Ninth. After the ceremony, I popped out to the panoramic roof terrace to toast the winners.

michelin_awards_ceremony_londonThen I met Rebecca Burr, Editor of the Michelin Guide Great Britain and Ireland 2017, to find out more about the awards process. She explained that the main factors that the inspectors look for are consistency, value for money, and a focus on flavours and ingredients. Service isn’t an official factor as it’s all about food, but having said that, most establishments that hold a Michelin Star do excel in this area too. The inspectors are always on the look out for new places to try out and they also follow up recommendations from readers of the printed and online guide. Restaurateurs can also write in and ask to be considered for inspection. The Bib Gourmand rewards more casual establishments such as Sardine in North East London – Paul and I loved it.

The Michelin Guide Great Britain & Ireland 2017 recommends more than 3,300 places to eat and sleep. It was published on October 3, the same day as the Michelin Guide London 2017. Both guides can be purchased from bookshops and at http://travel.michelin.co.uk. The Michelin Guide 2017 is also available as an iPhone app and you can now follow the inspectors via Twitter too @MichelinGuideUK.
What do you think of the Michelin Guide Great Britain & Ireland 2017 winners? Are there any restaurants that you would add to the list?

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  • Asma

    looks awesome! and sounds like you had a good time 🙂 Still upset we didn’t get any stars up here in Manchester 🙁

    • That’s a pity but it’s worth making recommendations online or via the printed guide as they did state that they take those into account. I agree that the dining scene is great in Manchester – I’m from the North!

      • Asma

        will remember that thanks, and I had no idea you were from up North 🙂

  • What an amazing event and some of my favourite were honoured.

    • It was really nice to see some of the best London restaurants honoured. I hope that One-O-One gets a star one day as I found them to be flawless

  • I love that two new pubs have been awarded Michelin stars – I visited the Hand In Flowers a couple of years ago and it’s still one of my most memorable meals. Loving the photo of you with The Michelin man Suze!!

    • The Hand in Flowers is on my wish list, I absolutely love Marlow – got my wedding dress from there. The Michelin Man was a charmer!

  • What a lovely event – and how fortunate you were to get up close and personal with the Michelin Man himself! 😉

    Gabrielle | A Glass Of Ice x

  • What a great event, looks like you are having a blast
    xo
    http://www.laurajaneatelier.com

  • My husband loves the Michelin Guide – looks like a great event!

  • That’s definitely an event for lovers of fine cooking. “So much talent and skill in one photo!” came to mind when I saw that first picture but I think my star-struck moment would’ve been meeting the Michelin man! x

    Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia: 3 Hidden Gems in Petaling Street – Posh, Broke, & Bored

    • Meeting the Michelin Man was a real highlight, and I chatted to a few of the chefs too – all very modest and unassuming

  • Looks like a really cool event

    Candice | Beauty Candy Loves

  • So interesting that service isn’t an official factor. This looks like a great event!

    Ash | Liakada

    • I was surprised about the service thing but thankfully most Michelin starred places are pretty hot on it

  • Such a great event to attend! It must have been inspiring. Looking forward to more Michelin starred restaurant reviews on your blog!

  • You got to meet the Michelin Man! How fun. 🙂

    -Ashley
    Le Stylo Rouge

  • Bella Rowcliffe

    Interesting post – I know about the Michelin guide but have never owned one. . .Now I’m going to put one on my Christmas wish list! What a great experience to have been at this event and I love the photo of you and the big guest!

    • They gave me a new copy of the guide and I’ve been finding some great places to go to in there

  • What a fun event. Look at you having fun. 🙂
    And you got to meet the adorable Michelin mascot.

  • Hayley Rubery

    What an amazing event Suze (love that you got to meet the Michelin man too haha!), it’s great news that two pubs were awarded – I’d love to try them out, the one in Oxfordshire especially as that’s closest to me! I went to a food stall in Singapore that has 1 Michelin star and you can eat for £1.50 it’s crazy (but so is the queue, people wait for up to 3 hours to get served!).

    Hayley xo
    http://www.frockmeimfamous.com

    • That food stall sounds fantastic, I wonder if there’s anything like it in Bangkok – heading there soon! Have a great Sunday

  • Ellie Adams

    Suze, what an amazing event. A a major foodie I would have loved to be amongst so many incredible chefs!

    Elle
    xx

  • The photo of you with the Michelin man is so cute! How cool that you went to this event- I will know doubt be seeing some of these chefs restaurants on your blog in the future 🙂

    Rachel xx
    http://www.thedailyluxe.net

    • I always enjoy visiting Michelin starred restaurants, although I love casual neighbourhood places too. Have a great Sunday, Rachel

  • I love Veeraswamy – really has stood the test of time and the food is heavenly. Is the Five Fields the one in Chelsea? I’ve heard such great things about it! Oh and I didn’t even know the Fat Duck had ever lost its star. You learn something new every day in the blog world 🙂

    • Yes, the Five Fields is in Chelsea – haven’t been yet but I’ve heard it’s fantastic. Veeraswamy is great isn’t it!

  • What a fabulous event to attend! Have a lovely weekend. Gemma x
    http://www.jacquardflower.uk

  • What a galaxy of food royalty indeed!

  • Looks like a great time!

    Xx,

    || FLOORTJELOVES ||

    http://www.floortjeloves.com

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  • melbtravel

    How lucky were you to attend that is amazing and it looks like you had a really great time too. I really enjoyed your post and I am looking forward to going to the Fat Duck on Tuesday.

  • Coco Cami

    Great post, thank you for sharing. Looks like an amazing occasion! 🙂

    Camille xo

    http://www.cococami.blogspot.co.uk

  • Lucy

    Heston definitely deserved his three stars, and I’m pleased to see that the Lake District have two restaurants listed. I do love the guide but wish that it would be braver to highlight those restaurants producing amazing food but not publicly profiled Lucy x (FoodieForce)