Michelin DC: 2018 Rumors 

It is that time of the year again! Exactly one year ago (10/13/2017), the red guide arrived to Washington DC. With much controversy, Michelin awarded only 19 Bib Gourmands in 2017 (and 16 this year), 3 two stars, and 9 one stars.

Michelin, for many, is considered as the most important restaurant rating guide in the world and for many Chefs, attaining one star means is the pinnacle of their careers.


Washington DC’s food scene has been growing exponentially in the past few years. It is a great time to dine in the Capital of the country


The Michelin Guide launched the first edition of Washington DC in 2017.

The Michelin Guide 2018 will be released this Tuesday October 17th 2018 and we are already hearing some rumors about who will be crown king of the DC food scene and how many restaurants will be elevated to the dreamed status of michelin starred.

Bib Gourmands are the “great value” restaurant list. Here, the anonymous inspectors are looking for an appetizer, main course, and a dessert or glass of wine within under $40 before tip and tax. These are the 2018 Bib Gourmand Restaurants:

  • Bad Saint
  • Bidwell
  • Boqueria
  • Chercher
  • China Chilcano
  • Das
  • Doi Moi
  • Jaleo
  • Hazel
  • Ivy City Smokehouse
  • Kyrisan
  • Lapis
  • Maketto
  • Ottoman Taverna
  • Oyamel
  • Pearl Dive Oyster Palace
  • Sfoglina
  • The Red Hen
  • The Royal
  • Thip Khao
  • 2 Amys
  • Zaytinya

This year I was expecting a higher amount of “Great Value” restaurant on the list. However, I was not expecting many of this restaurants to move up to the starred category as we know the Michelin guide is known for looking for consistency which means it sometimes takes years for a restaurant to be moved from one category to another.


Omelette at Pineapple & Pearls

Will DC welcome a new King?

For Michelin, DC was not worthy of the highest award on its first released in 2017. However, 3 restaurants received 2 stars:

  • Minibar by Jose Andres
  • Pineapple & Pearls
  • The Inn at Little Washington

I have witness these three restaurants on several visits during this year to really up their offerings and building a better experience in order to capture and charmed those michelin inspectors. However, most of the word on the street is that Michelin will play hard to get one more year (or more) and keep the 3 stars category empty to create that illusion of ‘unattainable price’. Some others feels that the oldest restaurant in the area will finally be crowned king of the Capital while some others feel that the lately affinity of michelin with modern experiences as seen with the elevation of the techno-emotional Ultraviolet increase chances for DC’s most avant garde and futuristic restaurant to claim such price.


Tail up Goat does modern greek in a casual environment


Squab Saltimbocca at Fiola

The Dreamers: The 2 stars Category:

With currently three restaurants in the 2 stars list, the big question is if any of the 1 stars will be elevated by the red guide. The current 1 star restaurants are the following:

  • Tail up Goat
  • Masseria
  • Fiola
  • Sushi Taro (Omakase Counter)
  • Rose’s Luxury
  • Kinship
  • Plume
  • Blue Duck Tavern
  • The Dabney

While some think that Metier or Komi will be automatically elevated to 2 stars, some others feel that the elegant Italian eatery of Fabio Trabocchi may have the best chances to be the winning restaurant this year. Kinship has always been doing worthy food and Sushi Taro has an edge due to the red guide affinity to well crafted sushi.


Fish Tartare at Plume


The Dabney


Sashimi starter at Sushi Taro

New Stars in the District

The last questions are if the red guide will award any new stars in the district this year. With so many great openings this year the first though is that we will see quite some new stars popping up. Himitsu is by many the strongest contender in this category. Komi and Little Serow, the big omissions last year are also expected to make their appearance here. Mirabelle checks all the boxes to be awarded one star and Metier, who many believe may do the big jump to two stars is a solid candidate to land one star as well.


Desserts at Masseria


Blue Duck Tvern


Rose’s Luxury Lychee Salad

What are your thoughts on this years Michelin release? who gains stars?

Categories: Washington DC


  1. Agreed, I think Himitsu is a strong contender for 1 star. Maybe The Inn at Little Washington moves to 3 stars?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Surprised to see no mention of Rasika anywhere here


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