With additional two French restaurants entering the threestar cut in the Michelin Guide, the French government sets a higher benchmark on its tourism by focusing more on its food culture France has made a record-breaking fact as the most visited country in the world. With more than 84 million tourists flocking to the republic in 2013, it features a wide diversity of attractions, including a vibrant food culture and culinary traditions that have stood the test of time. Paris, for instance, has been dubbed as the capital of haute cuisine, with more than 600 restaurants receiving at least one Michelin star in 2015. On February 2, Michelin included other selections from France into its three-star ranking, the announcement of which was made at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Quai d’orsay. The event signifies that the shift is taking place at the heart of the French government, strengthening the latter’s commitment to enhancing the role of gastronomy in its tourism growth. The two French restaurants that managed to enter the three-star category this year are La Bouitte in the French Alps, operated by father-and-son team Rene and Maxime Meilleur, and Yannick Alléno Parisian restaurant, Ledoyen. Rene and Maxime—each received the industry’s most venerated prize for their impeccable expertise in fish, said Michael Ellis, the director of international guides for Michelin, as quoted by AFP. Master chef Yannick Alléno, who once snatched the three-stars in 2007 for his work at Le Meurice in Paris, is the chef star this year. His work for Le Pavillon Ledoyen earned him the three-stars, an expected yet pleasing continuation of an achievement from the same restaurant that was previously named simply “Ledoyen”, which was then at the helm of Christian Le Squer. With such achievements, the French government also promises that other transformations will follow suit in hopes of catering the needs of tourists and changing its decadeslong haughty image. Other languages will be added in major subway lines and stations; multi-day transport passes for tourists will be available; polyglot agents will be allocated to serve tourists from all around the world, according to AP. In the shopping department, the country also plans on extending shopping hours on Sundays in tourist shopping areas (this is still under legislative debate). Restaurants will be required to differentiate their packaged food with homemade creations with the label “fait maison” (homemade). Last but not least, today, the famous Michelin has evolved into a comprehensive guide to tourism in general, not just restaurants.
French chefs Rene Meilleur (left) and his son Maxime Meilleur (centre), who run La Bouitte restaurant in Saint-martin-de-belleville in the French Alps, and French chef Yannick Alleno (right), who runs the Pavillon Ledoyen restaurant in central Paris, pose after being awarded three-stars during the presentation of the new 2015 annual Michelin restaurant guide in Paris February 2, 2015.