This film profiles nine 3* chefs from around the world. It was particularly interesting to see the differences in personalities; ranging from a Japanese, NYC and rural french chef. There is a common unrest and desire to walk a tightrope; however, you can clearly see that 3* means very different things to these chefs. Some are in charge of empires and require the stars to feed the beast. While others may find the rating to be nice; at the end of the day, it is the work one does which supersedes the ratings (of what I call the most expensive phone book out there).
Equally interesting is the interview with the current director of the Michelin guide and his insistence that all ratings are fair and unbiased. I find this a bunch of bullshit as I have eaten in a few 3* establishments over recent years and felt that I was raked over the coals as it were (Alinea, Bo Innovation, RyuGin).
The pre-globaIization (in other words before the Michelin guide left greater Europe) 3* experiences I had were justified and awe inspiring. I get that they needed to adjust to the times and stop being so French focused as France no longer can really carry the swagger it once had however if you bring your guide to a new city or country and throw down stars faster than you can say “sa marche” you look desperate to me. It used to take a lot of time to reach the 3* status. Now it seems that if you invest the right amount of money and have the right press you can almost buy your way in.
I think its all kind of silly at this point-critics in general make me woozie. I love the world of cooking and respect the work required of high end kitchens. Sadly, doing good work seems to not be enough.