October 14, 2008
Michelin Reveals Its Newest Stars

The 2009 edition of the Michelin Guide to San Francisco restaurants and hotels just arrived by FedEx, but if you have the 2008 book you may not need the new one. Though 55 new restaurants have been added to the directory, only five of the total 448 have been raised into the ranks of starred establishments.

Only one of the five, Coi, annointed with two stars, is in San Francisco. All the other new starred restaurants are outside San Francisco. They all got one star: Murray Circle in Sausalito, Plumed Horse in Saratoga, Trevese in Los Gatos, and The Village Pub in Woodside.

The French Laundry in Napa Valley's Yountville remains the only Northern California restaurant to receive Michelin's highest tribute, three stars.

In all, the guide lists 25 restaurants with one star, six with two.

Perhaps mindful of the nation's struggling economy, Michelin officials are playing down the starred restaurants, which also tend to be the more expensive, in favor of their "Bib Gourmand" category, which the company's inspectors have designated as their favorites for good value. This year, 55 qualified for the category on the basis that guests could expect to get two dishes and a glass of wine or dessert for $40 or less. The 55 include Aperto in San Francisco's Mission District, Betelnut Pejiu Wu in San Francisco's Marina District, Cook St. Helena at St. Helena in Napa Valley, Mirepoix at Windsor in Sonoma County, and South Park Cafe in San Francisco's SoMa District.

The guide, which sells for $16.95, doesn't include Sacramento.

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