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The first MICHELIN guide Tokyo.
Friday, 16th March 2007
Source : The MICHELIN guide
The famous guide is making its entry into Asia with the publication of the first edition in Tokyo, scheduled for release in November 2007.

After Europe, where 20 countries are covered, and the United States, the MICHELIN guide is pursuing its international development in Japan.

"Japan is a country where fine dining is an integral part of the culture and the art of table setting reflects a way of life that discretely combines refinement and culinary enjoyment," said Michel the Group's Managing Partner, who made the announcement today in Tokyo.

When asked about the choice of Japan and Tokyo, Jean-Luc Naret, Director of the MICHELIN guides, replied: "The MICHELIN guide is pursuing its international development with the launch of the first MICHELIN guide Tokyo a few months from now. Japan-and Tokyo in particular-seemed the natural gateway to this continent, which is so rich in gourmet food and cooking traditions."

Since last summer, European and Japanese Michelin inspectors have been making anonymous visits to restaurants and hotels in Tokyo, evaluating meals and staying overnight in hotels so that they can independently assess the quality and consistency of the services offered. Since the Michelin inspector's role is to see and experience what awaits the customer, maintaining anonymity is essential if they want to receive the same treatment as any other visitor to the establishment.

The MICHELIN guide offers a selection of hotels and restaurants in various comfort and price categories.

Comfort is rated by fork-and-spoon symbols for restaurantsand pavilions for hotels.These pictograms assess the establishment's equipment, service, cleanliness and general upkeep.

Stars judge only "what's in the plate," meaning the quality of the cooking. Five criteria are taken into account: product quality, preparation and flavors, the "personality" of the chef and the kitchen team, consistency over time and across the entire menu, and value for money. The number of stars that may be awarded ranges from oneto three

Their meaning is always the same, regardless of the country:
1: good restaurant in its category."
2: "excellent cooking, worth a detour."
3: "exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey."

Decisions to award stars are made collectively. All the inspectors who have evaluated a meal in a given restaurant present and support their opinions, based on their experiences and reports.

The MICHELIN guide Tokyo will be available in two languages: Japanese and English.

The MICHELIN guide Tokyo will be the 19th guide in the 2008 collection, while Japan becomes the 22nd country covered by the MICHELIN guide.

When they invented the first automobile tire in 1895, cofounders and Edouard Michelin revolutionized the world of transportation and, subsequently, travel. Since introducing this technological invention designed to enhance mobility, Michelin has remained firmly committed to making life easier for travelers by providing them with information that is objective, accurate, clear and easy to understand.

The first MICHELIN guide France was published in August 1900. Distributed free of charge (until 1920) and originally intended for chauffeurs, the Guide contained a wealth of practical information, including tips on using and repairing tires, city street maps, and lists of gasoline outlets, hotels and mechanics.

For the Michelin brothers, the objective was to speed the development of the automobile, and consequently the tire market. They wanted to promote and improve travel by making it safer and more enjoyable - in other words, by enhancingmobility, which is still today the goal common to all Michelin's maps, guides, atlases and other publications. The practice of awarding stars to the best restaurants was introduced in 1926 and expanded to include two-and three-star ratings in the early 1930s. Since then, Michelin has become the undisputed benchmark for gourmet dining around the world.

Every year, in more than 90 countries around the world, Michelin publishes some 19 million maps, atlases, tourist guides, and restaurant and hotel guides - always with the same focus on quality.

Michelin is dedicated sustainably improving the mobility of goods and and people by manufacturing and marketing tires for every of vehicle, including airplanes, automobiles, bicycles/motorcycles, earthmovers, farm equipment, trucks and the US space shuttle. It also offers electronic mobility support services, on ViaMichelin.com, and publishes travel restaurant guides, maps and road atlases. Headquartered in France, Michelin is present in 170 countries, has 129,000 employees and operates 71 production plants in 19 different countries.

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