Michelin Guide Adds Only 1 Star To A Single LA Restaurant For 2023

The city of Los Angeles has a contentious relationship with the Michelin Guide, and it only got more interesting when the tire company-owned restaurant guidebook released its list of new awardees for the state of California on July 18. In the 2023 California Guide, only one Los Angeles area restaurant known as Heritage, owned by Philip and Lauren Pretty in Long Beach, received the city's single new star. 

Despite LA's reputation for glitz and glamor, the Michelin Guide — which is infamous for its preference for high-end, high-price dining — rarely has rave reviews for the city's culinary scene. LA Weekly notes its former director Jean-Luc Naret saying that, "The people in Los Angeles ... are not too interested in eating well." The city received its own edition of the guide only once in 2009 and, after being brought back into the fold in 2019 when the San Francisco Michelin Guide became the California Michelin Guide, has continued to receive less recognition than other U.S. markets.

Bright lights and limited recognition

The award ceremony for the new guide was more focused on the Green Star designation, a more recently created award which recognizes restaurants with outstanding food and a strong commitment to sustainability. Heritage, whose menu features a farm-to-table tasting menu with produce sourced from its own farm, was also the recipient of a 2023 LA Green Star along with Providence, a two-star seafood restaurant in Hollywood, joining two other veteran Green Star holders.

In addition to the lack of new single-star restaurants in Los Angeles' section of the California Guide, no previously starred restaurants in the entire state of California were awarded additional stars, meaning that the second most populous city in the country still does not have a single three-Michelin Star restaurant. By contrast, New York has five three-star restaurants, San Francisco has three, and Chicago and San Diego each have one.