Michelin lets French chef pull out of guide for the first time

By Sophie Witts contact

- Last updated on GMT

Michelin lets French chef pull out of guide for the first time

Related tags: United kingdom of great britain and ireland, Star

The Michelin guide has allowed one of France’s top chefs to pull out of its listings after he admitted to struggling with the pressures that come with a star rating.

Sébastian Bras, whose Le Suquet restaurant in Laguiole has held the maximum three stars for 18 years, told French news agency AFP​ in September​ that he wanted to cook without worrying whether his dishes would make the inspector's grade.

It is the first time Michelin has ever allowed a restaurant to withdraw from its pages under the circumstances, despite several others expressing the wish to do so.

"It is difficult for us to have a restaurant in the guide which does not wish to be in it," Claire Dorland Clauzel of Michelin told AFP​.

"It is the first time we have had a public withdrawal of this sort.”

Dorland Clauzel confirmed that Le Suquet would not feature in the 2018 edition of the French Michelin guide when it is announced next Monday.

She added that other restaurants had dropped out when chefs retired or the concept had changed.

Marco Pierre White famously tried to hand back his stars in 1999, just a few years after becoming the youngest chef ever to achieve the rating aged 33.

Scottish hotel Boath House retained its one star rating last year despite asking to be stripped of the accolade​ ahead of the publication of the 2018 Guide to Great Britain and Ireland, claiming the expectations of Michelin inspectors were 'at odds with achievable profit margins'.

Bras told AFP​ last year that he was content to relinquish the prestige that came with the three-star rating in order to reduce stress.

“You're inspected two or three times a year, you never know when...every meal that goes out could be inspected," said Bras.

"That means that every day one of the 500 meals that leaves the kitchen could be judged.

“Maybe I will be less famous [without the stars] but I accept that.” 

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