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Michelin starts new category of California stars with local winners

Healdsburg’s Single Thread Restaurant and Farm was among five Bay Area restaurants given a 2020 “Green star” — a new category — at a virtual California Michelin Guide event this week.

The new star distinction was given to chefs who “have taken responsibility by preserving resources and embracing biodiversity, reducing food waste and reducing the consumption of non-renewable energy,” according to organizers.

Owners Kyle and Katina Connaughton of Single Thread in Healdsburg own a farm outside the town which grows many unique varieties of produce for their three-Michelin starred restaurant.

The stars, along with several “Michelin Discovery” restaurants (none in the North Bay) were a sort of consolation after the restaurant guide decided to forgo its annual California awards for 2020 in response to the pandemic and ongoing wildfires that have devastated the state.

On Tuesday, the French tire company long known for their European restaurant recommendations hosted a Virtual Family Meal where top California chefs discussed the state of restaurants after suffering from months of closures related to Covid and how restaurants have responded as front line feeders during the pandemic.

Other Green Star award winners in the Bay Area included Michael Tusk of Quince in San Francisco, Dominique Crenn of Atelier Crenn in San Francisco, Thomas Keller of the French Laundry in Yountville and Alice Waters of Chez Panisse in Berkeley.

Michelin’s new category of inspector “discoveries” were a nod to “new and aspiring culinary talent across California” and included 25 restaurants statewide. In the Bay Area, Tony’s Seafood in Marin, Aziza in San Francisco, Tacos Oscar in Oakland, Los Carnalitos in Hayward, Brotzeit Lokal in Oakland and Selby’s in Silicon Valley were noted.

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