Whether you live in the beautiful golden state year round or are just visiting to soak up the sun, California has a lot to offer its residents and its visitors. From the gorgeous beaches to the glitz and glam of Hollywood, California has given us a wide variety of culture, art, and entertainment. But unlike most states, California also provides a very diverse and rich food scene for one to experience. In fact, Beverly Hills is home to a handful of Michelin starred restaurants as well as some of the finest shopping, mansions for homes, and the wealthiest lifestyles around the world. It is truly the California hotspot for experiencing everything the classy life has to offer. And what better way to experience it than through food?
Beverly Hills proudly has several restaurants on the Michelin map all ranging in style and cultural influences. Below are the top Michelin starred restaurants to put on your list next time you find yourself in the gorgeous Beverly Hills.
For Michelin Star Restaurants in Los Angeles, click here.
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Star chef, Curtis Stone, has been cooking up in the kitchen since he was 18 years old. Since his passion ignited at such a young age, Stone has been busy cooking alongside some of London’s finest dining experiences and perfecting his craft. He also has quite the laundry list of TV appearances thanks to his extreme cooking skills. He has been featured on shows such as Iron Chef America, Top Chef, The Celebrity Apprentice, Take Home Chef, and even Master Chef. It wasn’t until 2014 that he decided to take the plunge and pursue his lifelong dream of opening his own restaurant (1).
In February of 2014, Maude was introduced to Beverly Hills, named after Stone’s grandma. For the first four years, Maude featured a rotating menu each month inspired off of seasonal ingredients. Each month, a new ingredient would enter the ring and the entire menu would be built around that. In 2018, however, Maude took a different turn. Rather than featuring a new ingredient each month, instead the menu changed quarterly with each quarter inspired by regions of the world. Now, Stone and his team travel the world each quarter to a different region to immerse themselves in the food, wine, history, and culture. From there, they bring back what they’ve learned and build an entire dining experience around that particular region. And the results… well, they speak for themselves.
Maude has been recognized by many organizations for their incredible dining experience and flavor mastery. At the moment, Maude currently has 1 Michelin star, awards from the James Beard Foundation, Travel + Leisure, and LA Weekly. Since Maude no longer uses menus, you must be prepared to put full trust in the chef. Not only will you be in for quite the enjoyable experience, but no two experiences will ever be the same.
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Like many Michelin starred chefs, Josiah Citrin began his culinary journey at a young age. Growing up in Santa Monica and Venice, Citrin’s mother was a caterer and his grandmother was a French cook who always provided the family meals. This exposure to the culinary industry at such a young age launched Citrin into “the pursuit of excellence”, his personal culinary philosophy (2). After graduating high school, Citrin moved to Paris to learn more about his heritage as well as the culinary scene. He lived there for three years working alongside fine dining Parisian establishments such as Vivarois and La Poste, where he gained an understanding and deep respect for French cooking.
After returning from Paris, he began working alongside chefs in the Los Angeles area, gaining exposure and eventually landing a head chef job at Capri and Jackson’s. It wasn’t until Citrin was in his 30’s that he decided to pursue his lifelong dream of opening his own restaurant. Thus, Mélisse was born and has been grabbing the attention of the culinary world ever since as one of the best French restaurants in the United States. Chef Josiah Citrin has been awarded a well earned two Michelin stars as well as many other awards and publications including “Best Wine List” by LA Weekly, “Top 100 Restaurants in the World” by Elite Traveler, “Best Chef of the Year” by Los Angeles Magazine, and many more.
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Chef Niki Nakayama was born in Los Angeles, California to Japanese parents. Her parents worked as fish distributors as Niki was growing up, and this served as her first exposure to the culinary world. She later attended culinary school in Pasadena where she discovered her passion to being committed to exploring new cooking techniques. After she graduated college, Niki moved to Japan for three years where she completely immersed herself in the essentials of Japanese style cooking (3). While she was there, she worked at a restaurant called Shirakawa-Ya Ryokan, which was under a Japanese style Inn owned by her cousins. The restaurant was renowned for its kaiseki style cuisine – a traditional Japanese multi-course meal with a particular ebb and flow to it. This deeply influences her passion for cooking, and soon she returned to the United States to open Azami Sushi Café, her first restaurant particularly known for its all female staff.
It wasn’t until she sold Azami in 2008 that she open n/naka, the self-name portmanteau restaurant. Originally, Nakayama had intended for an open bar style seating where guests could watch the culinary experience. She later decided against it, as she would rather have guests focusing on their food rather than on her. While guests may not have their eyes directly on her, the culinary industry around the world is turning heads. n/naka has been appropriately awarded two Michelin stars, one of only six Los Angeles County restaurants to do so, as well as name The New Yorker’s most prominent kaiseki restaurant in the United States. The restaurant is also featured in the Netflix original series, Chef’s Table. n/naka is truly an experience unlike any other, and one of the only authentic kaiseki dining experiences in the United States.