Why does ‘Michelin,’ a tire brand, dominate the restaurant business?

When we are eating out at a restaurant, we often see or hear of Michelin Star. The Michelin that is mentioned is the same one as Michelin which is a tire brand. Have you ever wondered why a tire brand relates to the food industry? Today, ACU PAY will answer your questions.

What is the Michelin Star?

Michelin Star is a badge that represents the best quality restaurant standard, receiving stars through Michelin Guide ratings. Star rating is divided into 1 star, 2 stars, and 3 stars from restaurants offering the best quality food. How the restaurant gets stars requires consideration of ingredient quality, cooking techniques, food characteristics, suitability and cost-effectiveness, and consistency of taste. In addition, there are also dish decoration, table setting and service.

The level of Michelin Star

The levels and the meanings are divided into 3 levels which are

  • Michelin 1 Star: High quality cooking, worth a stop. A restaurant with high quality that is worth a stop.
  • Michelin 2 Stars: Excellent cooking, worth a detour. A restaurant with excellent quality that is worth driving off the way to visit.
  • Michelin 3 Stars: Exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey. A restaurant with the best quality that is worth starting a long journey to visit once.

How does a tire brand relate to the food industry?

It has to go back to the beginning of Michelin in the 20th century, when there were only 2,200 cars in France. André and Édouard Michelin, two siblings, who were the founders of the tire brand wanted to increase the sale of cars and tires by changing the car for upper-class people to vehicles that can travel a long distance. 

The Michelin brothers then issued a small red book that gathered information for tourists such as a hotel map, how to change a tire, restaurants to stop by and rest stops to make people use cars more.

This small guidebook had been given for free for 20 years till it became the Michelin Guide which was sold at 7 franc in 1920 and had a great influence on people. The Michelin brothers then started to hire gourmets to find delicious restaurants without them knowing. Then began giving ‘Star’ to the gourmet restaurant in 1926 from a single star, gradually dividing it into three stars five years later.

In the 20th century, ‘Michelin Guide’ became the best-seller book. Michelin currently ranks 40,000 restaurants and hotels in more than 24 countries on four continents. Michelin will have an undisclosed inspector, who will have an extensive background in the culinary arts. Many were former chefs, and before becoming Michelin inspectors, the gourmets had to undergo rigorous Michelin Guide training in France.

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