The second edition of that venerable bastion of haute cuisine known as the Michelin Guide is out, and here are the not-so-shocking results: Thomas Keller's French Laundry in Yountville is the only restaurant in Northern California to receive the coveted three star rating, defined as "exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey."
Of the 600 restaurants visited by Michelin critics, 384 got one star, which translates in Michelin talk as "very good," including four San Francisco newcomers: Ame, Coi, Cortez and One Market. The only real losers this year are Bushi-Tei in San Francisco and Dry Creek Kitchen in Healdsburg, which both lost their single star rating from last year. I still don't understand what the hell tires have to do with restaurants, but whatever.
-- Brian Bernbaum