Bangkok really killed it at Asia's 50 Best, winning more awards than any other city. But that's already old news. Finally, it's been confirmed that Thailand will be getting its own Michelin Guide.
We've been peddling such rumors to you, dear readers, for years. But according to new reports the Thai government has approved a B143.5 million budget to sponsor Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT)’s quest to bring the Michelin Guide to Thailand. That money covers a five-year contract with our first version of the prestigious guide set to arrive by the end of 2017.
While the official terms of the deal stipulate that the guide will be Thailand-wide, it's expected the inaugural edition will stick to Bangkok before expanding to other leading provinces.
Since its debut in France in 1900 by the eponymous French tire company, the prestigious red-covered guide has been a restaurant bible for foodies who seek exceptional dining experiences. Each year, the guide’s inspectors dine at potential restaurants and give them ratings, ranging from one to three stars. In Asia, there are already guides for Hong Kong-Macau, Japan, Seoul, Shanghai and Singapore.
The Michelin Guide is also known for enhancing culinary travel. Having a Thailand edition of the guide will help make this city a food destination that’s known for more than just (awesome) street eats. (Though it's worth bearing in mind that Michelin's Hong Kong and Singapore guides, in particular, are notable for rewarding street vendors.)
French chef Joel Robuchon holds the most stars in the world—a total of 35 stars from 16 restaurants in nine cities. Last week, Hong Kong’s L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon, which has three stars, placed one spot below the Bangkok branch in this year's Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants list. That’s only one of our restaurants we’re expecting to receive stars.
Another local name to have tasted Michelin acclaim, albeit for a foreign branch, is Silom's Somtum Der, whose New York location won and then subsequently lost a star.
Which Bangkok restaurants do you think deserve Michelin stars?