The Michelin Guide is perhaps the world’s most famous restaurant guidebook. With its bright red color tones and hard-to-earn stars, among other accolades the Michelin company doles out, the guide has become synonymous with a certain kind (often narrowly defined) dining experience around the globe. Now two new Los Angeles restaurants will be added to the book this year, though it hasn’t yet been revealed precisely how.
On March 8, Michelin teased six new additions to the overall guide this year for California, spread up and down the state. Local to LA, the focus was on two spots, including Leona’s Sushi House, the sprawling Studio City compound that only opened back in December 2022. Calling the food “irreverent” and “crave-worthy,” the guide lauds the restaurant for having both “terrific food” and “great ambiance.”
The second local restaurant teased by Michelin for the 2023 guide is Niku X, the spendy wagyu-focused Downtown restaurant from the team behind upscale hotpot spot X Pot that opened in November 2022. Located inside a high-rise building at 900 Wilshire Boulevard, the restaurant earned praise from Michelin for its “classic Yakiniku-style cooking with contemporary techniques,” served in a “stunner” of a space.
Both Leona’s Sushi House and Niku X will be found in this year’s Michelin book, but it remains to be seen whether either will earn a coveted Michelin star. For now they are only being teased as “new” additions for the year 2023, with the aim being to both promote the guide ahead of its fall arrival, and to “help food lovers to enjoy new discoveries before the annual announcement.” Michelin also hands out Bib Gourmands to many restaurants within its guidebook, noting that the restaurant is doing something worthy of praise but not, for that year at least, at the level of a Michelin star.