Michelin France 2008, the news is out...
Should you want to buy the guide you'd still have to wait until Thursday, but the cat is out of the bag today.
After rampant Internet speculations--which this year had been more fun than usual with bonafide journalists and even a facebook group joining the fray--the real deal is out. There is only one three star promotion, which goes to Gérald Passédat at Le Petit Nice in Marseilles joining the exclusive club.
The rumor of the demotion of the century--yes, yes, I know it's young yet mais quand même!--about l'Arpège being demoted to the lowly two-star status turned out to be false. Although the surprising promotion of what is essentially a chain restaurant, l'Atelier de Joël Robuchon (the one in Paris), getting its second star has now been confirmed.
On the actual demotion front, Le Grand Véfour got it. It's now a two-star restaurant with Michelin citing problem of consistency to back its decision. Another rumor that had Phillipe Legendre at Le Cinq getting back his third star Michelin took away from him last year also turned out to be false.
Michelin seems a bit stingy in its three star promotion this year, compared to the whopping five new restaurants joining (or rejoining) the rank last year. Perhaps they are waiting to make the big splash next year in their centennial guide? We'll just have to wait and see. The only new 3-star Le Petit Nice also joins the exclusive group of fish-centric restaurants with three stars: Le Bernadin in Manhattan and Olivier Roellinger's la Maison de Bricourt in Brittany. I'm not counting the sushi restaurants in Tokyo though.
PDF file of the whole list of one, two, three stars and bib gourmands and whatnots, after the jump.
P.S. Sorry for being slow on the blog this last week. I've been alternately busy and/or sick like a dog for the past week. I'll post the second half of the five spice braised pork belly up as soon I can string more than just a paragraph or two together!