7 Bay Area restaurants were just added to the Michelin Guide

The Michelin Guide just added 37 California restaurants to its “new discoveries” list, including seven Bay Area businesses.

The selection of local restaurants includes San Francisco winners Itria, Ken, Osito and Yuji. The Michelin Guide also recognized Oakland restaurants Bird & Buffalo and the ever-popular Hi Felicia. Cyrus in Geyserville was likewise listed.

“I am at a loss for words,” Imana, chef-owner of Hi Felicia, told SFGATE. “I’m so thankful to my team, both past and present, and I know without them, this wouldn’t be possible. I am eternally grateful for this recognition.”

Hi Felicia opened her brick-and-mortar location earlier this year after Imana first ran Hi Felicia Supper Club from her Oakland apartment with major success. The Michelin Guide gave a nod to the Oakland restaurant for its unconventional approach to fine dining and its ability to create a space with “exuberant irreverence” for diners.

Daniel Evers, the executive chef-owner of Itria, was thrilled when he learned that the Michelin Guide had recognized his Italian restaurant. He shared that the honor was more special for him given that Itria debuted in San Francisco last May, a time when many restaurants were unstable amid the pandemic.

The interior of Hi Felicia Supper Club in Oakland. Hi Felicia was recently added to the Michelin Guide in California.

Lance Yamamoto/Special to SFGATE

“It is wonderful to see all the hard work our staff has put in being recognized by the Michelin Guide,” Evers told SFGATE via email. “It’s certainly been a challenging road since we opened, through COVID and now the current economic uncertainty, but we always strive to provide great food and a great guest experience. It is a reminder to keep doing what we do and to keep pushing forward.”

Chef Chi Hang Ngai, chef-owner of Ken, told SFGATE he felt honored and was still processing the win. Ken began as a pop-up before it eventually opened its storefront last May, which also happens to be Chef Ngai’s first restaurant venture. The Michelin Guide took note of Ken’s “intimate omakase counter,” a charming space with only six seats.

The new additions released on Wednesday come months after the Michelin Guide added 17 Bay Area restaurants to its California Guide in June. Next month, the tire company will announce Michelin Star winners, as well as recipients of the Bib Gourmand award, which could include some of the Bay Area restaurants listed in the California “new discoveries” section.

For a full list of California restaurants mentioned in the “new discoveries” section, visit the Michelin Guide site here.

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