London’s Michelin stars — and the chefs who want Michelin-starred restaurants — await one day per year like no other. Before the Michelin Guide for Great Britain and Ireland announced its Michelin stars for 2021, restaurants across London waited with baited breath, and a sense of confusion. Awarding Michelin stars to restaurants that have been closed for most of 2020, in the middle of a global pandemic, fundamentally goes against the Michelin star’s selectivity. In giving out one, two, or three stars to restaurants it deems worthy, it must also ignore those it does not.
As the dust settles and the Michelin man recovers from limbering up to reveal 2021’s constellation of Michelin-starred London restaurants, Eater London tracks all the Michelin news for the 2021 guide: why is Michelin awarding stars in a pandemic? And which London restaurants gained or lost their stars?