Hillary Eaton

Originally appeared on Food & Wine

Here’s How Michelin Stars Actually Affect the Restaurant Business

The Michelin guide has long been the defacto authority on the world’s best dining. But as gourmet culture reaches peak mainstream popularity and old culinary hierarchies remain in flux, how does gaining, losing and (gasp) renouncing a star actually affect a restaurant’s business?

Historically, receiving a single Michelin star has led to an increase in customers for restaurants. Take chef John Fraser, whose New York restaurant Nix joined the Michelin star rankings this year (and whose website features “Proud new owner of a Michelin star” as a central banner). He said that receiving a Michelin star “has drastically increased business at both Nix and Dovetail.” An added bonus? “With the stars, I do feel now we are able to retain a higher level of staff than before.”