Chefs and restaurateurs in Orlando, Miami and Tampa will learn June 9 whether they’ve made the cut for the first Florida Michelin Guide. The announcements will be made at the Ritz-Carlton Grande Lake at 6:30 p.m.
Representatives of the fabled guide will reveal which restaurants earned one, two or the ultimate three stars or a Bib Gourmand designation, sort of a Miss Congeniality category for restaurants not quite up to star status. (The Bib Gourmand award is named for the puffy Michelin Man mascot, whose official name is Bibendum. Who knew?)
Also at the June 9 ceremony, the Sommelier of the Year and Exceptional Cocktails Awards will be presented.
As with American counterpart guidebooks (Mobil, AAA), the Michelin Guide began in France at the turn of the 20th century to help new motorists find places to eat as they toured the country.
Michelin published its first U.S. guide in 2005, focusing on New York City, of course. Other domestic “red guides” can be found in Washington, D.C., Chicago and California. Toronto was added last week as the sixth North American Michelin city.
Michelin announced its foray into Florida during the pandemic, and numerous restaurants that would be considered star contenders – Victoria & Albert's and Norman's come to mind – have delayed their reopenings. Others are facing supply and staffing obstacles, so the first Florida guidebook may have to be published with an asterisk.
Which restaurants do you expect to earn a coveted star?