San Francisco Retains Its Culinary Crown

The  2023 MICHELIN Guide California awards made one thing clear: San Francisco remains the culinary capital of the Golden State. The City by the Bay boasts 27 Michelin-starred restaurants, and the San Francisco Bay Area is now home to 50 of the 87 California restaurants awarded Michelin stars.

Two San Francisco restaurants – Aphotic, a restaurant specializing in sustainable and dry-aged seafood, and Nari, a Thai restaurant – earned their first Michelin stars, and all of the city’s previously awarded two-star and three-star restaurants retained their honors. Aphotic was also honored with a Michelin Green Star, which recognized the establishment for its commitment to sustainability.

Altogether, San Francisco is home to half of the state’s three-star Michelin restaurants and five of its 12 two-star establishments, plus three of its 15 Green Star restaurants. 

Michelin also recognized the city’s rising culinary talent for the second year in a row. Chef Harrison Cheney, the executive chef at Sons & Daughters, received the prestigious Michelin Young Chef Award, which was awarded to Chef David Yoshimura of San Francisco’s Nisei last year. 

“For a small city only seven-by-seven square miles, San Francisco is one of the world’s great gastronomic hubs,” said Joe D’Alessandro, the president and CEO of the San Francisco Travel Association. “We are thrilled to see the city’s incredible culinary scene recognized again by Michelin.”

“This year’s new Michelin Guide highlights the diversity and quality of our San Francisco restaurant community. With our access to the highest quality local ingredients, regional wines and highly dedicated chefs, our local culinary scene continues to be a highlight for locals and tourists alike,” said Laurie Thomas, Executive Director of the Golden Gate Restaurant Association and CEO of Nice Ventures.

The wider San Francisco Bay Area also shined with new stars. Calistoga’s Auro and Carmel-by-the-Sea’s Chez Noir each earned one Michelin Star, while Oakland’s Pomet was also honored with a Green Star. 

John Schafer of Healdsburg’s SingleThread was recognized with the Michelin Outstanding Service Award, and John Haffey of Carmel-by-the-Sea’s Auberginewas presented with the Michelin Sommelier Award.

This summer, Michelin added four Bay Area restaurants to its Bib Gourmand roster, which recognizes restaurants with great food at an affordable price point. The additions include San Francisco’s Bansang, Oakland’s Snail Bar and Bombera, and San Jose’s Petiscos.

Sixteen San Francisco restaurants are designated Bib Gourmands, and 70 are featured as Michelin Selects in the 2023 MICHELIN California guide.