Tuesday, May 21, 2024

These Are Mexico’s First Michelin-Starred Restaurants, 2024

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On May 14, Michelin brought its lauded restaurant guide to Mexico for the first time. At a ceremony in Mexico City, restaurants in Baja California, Quintana Roo, Mexico City, Oaxaca, Los Cabos, and Nuevo Léon received their first stars. In the inaugural guide, 16 restaurants received one star and two restaurants received two. No restaurants received the maximum three stars.

Among this year’s winners was Pujol, the famed Mexico City spot. The restaurant, which serves a tasting menu of reimagined takes on traditional Mexican dishes, took home two stars. Though he owns several well-respected restaurants, including New York’s Cosme and Atla, this was chef Enrique Olvera’s first win. Jorge Vallejo’s Quintonil in Mexico City, a fine-dining classic that serves clever dishes made with ingredients native to Mexico, also nabbed two stars.

Mexico is the latest in a spate of expansions the guide has made since 2022 to countries including Vietnam and the United Arab Emirates. Though Michelin has sprinted to extend its coverage to new areas, Mexico had, until now, been passed over despite emerging as a culinary leader on the world stage.

In a recent interview with Bon Appétit, the guide’s international director, Gwendal Poullennec, explained that it can take years of research and scouting trips for the organization to introduce a new Michelin guide. “Today, I have inspectors scouting about 20 destinations where we do not yet have a restaurant selection, but that we are considering for future years,” says Poullennec. “It’s always a several-year process because we must see the openings and the consistency.”

As it expands, Michelin has forged relationships with what it calls Destination Marketing Organizations—local tourism boards that contribute large sums of money to fund the guide coming to their regions. In Mexico, Michelin partnered with Canirac, a national restaurant association—at the time of publication, representatives from Michelin did not respond to questions about how much money Michelin might have received to support its coverage in Mexico. In the interview with Bon Appétit, Poullennec responded to criticism surrounding these partnerships, saying that the money provided by tourism boards helps to offset the costs of producing the guide but does not affect outcomes: “We’ve partnered with Destination Marketing Organizations, but they have absolutely no information about the [restaurant] selection until it’s released to the press.”

In addition to Mexico’s first starred restaurants, Michelin also added 42 restaurants to its Bib Gourmand list, a category dedicated to comparatively inexpensive restaurants. Several chefs took home special awards as well. Marcello Hisaki and Reyna Venegas of Restaurant Amores in Tecate, which serves French-influenced Mexican food, received the service award. Lauren Plascencia won the sommelier award for her work at the French-inflected Animálon in Valle de Guadalupe. Michelin also awarded six green stars, which recognize sustainable and ethical restaurant practices.

Find the full list of Michelin-starred restaurants below.

Entries are organized alphabetically.

Two-Starred Restaurants

  • Pujol, Mexico City
  • Quintonil, Mexico, City

One-Starred Restaurants

  • Animalón, Baja California
  • Cocina de Autor Los Cabos, Baja California Sur
  • Cocina de Autor Riviera Maya, Quintana Roo
  • Conchas de Piedra, Baja California
  • Damiana, Baja California
  • Em, Mexico City
  • Esquina Común, Mexico City
  • HA’, Quintana Roo
  • KOLI Cocina de Origen, Nuevo León
  • Le Chique, Quintana Roo
  • Levadura de Olla Restaurante, Oaxaca
  • Los Danzantes Oaxaca, Oaxaca
  • Pangea, Nuevo León
  • Rosetta, Mexico City
  • Sud 777, Mexico City
  • Taquería El Califa de León, Mexico City

Green Stars

  • Conchas de Piedra, Drew Beckman
  • Deckman en el Mogor, Drew Beckman
  • Los Danzantes Oaxaca, Chazz Titus
  • Flora’s Field Kitchen, Guillermo Tellez and Patrick and Gloria Greene
  • Arce, Arturo Riveiro
  • Lunario, Sheyla Alvarado



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