The 2019 edition of the Michelin Guide of Portugal and Spain, to be presented in Lisbon next Wednesday, will bring “important news” to Iberian restaurants, said a company official.
“In general terms, it is a good year for Portugal and Spain, there is important news in both countries,” commented the communication officer of the Michelin Guide Spain and Portugal, Angel Pardo, about the 2019 edition.
The next year’s guide will be presented in Lisbon for the first time at the 10th Michelin gala presentation, which reveals restaurants that win, hold or lose stars of the so-called ‘red guide’, equated with ‘Oscars’ of gastronomy ‘.
In the current edition, Portugal has 18 restaurants with one star (‘cuisine of great finesse, compensates for stopping’) and five with two stars (‘exceptional cuisine, worth the detour’), but it still has no establishment with the maximum distinction, of three stars (‘single cuisine, justifies the trip’).
Spain won in 2018 the three stars for two more restaurants, thus bringing together 11 establishments with the highest award. It has 159 establishments with one star and 25 with two.
The team of the Iberian guide is composed of about a dozen inspectors – anonymous – of both nationalities.
However, said Angel Pardo, there are more and more collaborations of inspectors from other European countries.
This team is also responsible for the preparation of the guides of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro so that during the work periods in Brazil they are replaced by inspectors from European countries.
“This year, both in Spain and Portugal, there were inspectors from other countries, such as English, Italian, Belgian, French,” commented the company’s representative.
Ángel Pardo points out the advantages of this “very intense collaboration between all the inspectors of Europe”, a reality that he claims to be growing: “Gastronomy is increasingly global, with influences from many countries and many trends, so it is always interesting that there is an exchange between the inspectors and that they know kitchens from other countries, “he commented.
“It is very positive because it guarantees an important rhythm of visits, which ensures a correct decision, and also because there are different points of view that, in the end, are enriching,” he said, noting that the final decision lies with the team of inspectors of the guide Iberian, who takes the decision collegially.
Choices have been closed since late September, at which point the guides went to print.
The announcement will be made in Lisbon on Wednesday evening at a ceremony attended by around 500 guests, including all three and two-star chefs in Spain and Portugal and “a large number of cooks of other categories,” in addition to institutional representatives, businessmen and more than 100 journalists, the organization said.
This is the 10th presentation gala of the Iberian Michelin Guide, launched in 1910, and the first time it takes place in Portugal after all the previous ceremonies have taken place in different Spanish cities, resulting from a joint candidacy of the Tourism of Portugal, the Lisbon Chamber and the Lisbon Tourism Association.
After the announcement, a dinner will be served by seven chefs from the Lisbon region: José Avillez (Belcanto, the only one with two stars in the Portuguese capital), and Henrique Sá Pessoa (Alma), Joachim Koerper (Eleven), João Rodrigues Feitoria), Miguel Rocha Vieira (Guincho Fortress), Sergi Arola (LAB) and Alexandre Silva (Loco), all with a star.
Each chef will present three dishes and a dessert, “representative of their cuisine,” according to Michelin.