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  • Writer's pictureFood Story Media

3 Trends in Michelin-Starred Restaurants 2022

Updated: Mar 29, 2022

Michelin Guide books on the shelf.
Michelin Guide

Trendwatching Quote, Transparency

Have you ever wondered which trends are rising amongst Michelin-starred restaurants, but have found it’s a real struggle to find any valuable information on the topic? As the Michelin Guide maintains their ever-so-mysterious ways, restaurants are left in the dark as to which direction hospitality is headed. Since we’re regularly on the scene with our restaurant partners, we’ve acquired some juicy insight over time, and in this article we’re going to give you the inside scoop on which course *pun intended* our industry is taking.

#1 Storytelling

The first, most common, and of course our favourite trend in Michelin-starred restaurants is storytelling. Storytelling is a strong method of marketing that exudes a brand’s personality, set of values, and inspiration. Michelin-starred restaurants and chefs around the world are now telling their stories through mini-documentaries, photography, videography, social media, and cinematography to consistently connect with their audience on an intimate, emotional level - bringing attention and focus to the details of their evolving journey.

Why do Michelin-starred restaurants choose Storytelling?

Storytelling has proven to be the most effective way to create a relationship with your consumers as its personal and humanistic approach allows the audience to connect on a deeper spectrum. Through storytelling, brands are able to communicate their thoughts, services, and values in a more authentic way. This direct method of marketing helps brands to steer clear of false narratives created by external mediums (such as food critics). Storytelling has certainly surpassed the formal, automated ads of the past, and has become the new standard for keeping brand integrity at the forefront.

Michelin House London

When brands make a conscious effort to reach their community, they break

through the corporate veil and cultivate an engaged audience with a strong sense of brand loyalty. This also provides brands with exclusive access to thorough consumer feedback and unique preferences. The raw and unfiltered, ‘this is who we are, what we’ve been through and what we've done’ concept of storytelling gives the brand’s community a chance to become engrossed in, empathise with, and become emotionally invested through aligned experiences or ethea. In our industry’s case, the restaurant’s, chef’s, and team’s true essence. This creates brand transparency which results in longstanding trust; something that consumers will reflect upon before choosing to pay for a premium experience at a Michelin-starred restaurant.

#2 Transparency

Michelin-starred restaurants, along with many other fine-dining establishments, have become increasingly open about their operations, ambitions and story. Transparency in restaurants has four elements. Who you are, what you do, how you do it, and why you do it.

Break down of the elements of Brand Transparency.
Elements of Brand Transparency

We're seeing more and more Michelin-starred restaurants taking serious measures to create stronger brand identities by investing the time and effort it takes to tell their story and peel back the layers to express their inspirations, processes, and future plans.

Why are Michelin-starred restaurants becoming more transparent?

Consumer food habits have changed dramatically over the years, with a greater curiosity developing around the origin of the ingredients and how they might affect their health, ecosystem, community, and planet. As a result, Michelin-starred restaurants have taken measures to provide the source of ingredients on their menus, websites, and across their social media platforms. Not only are they transparent, they’re also proud of the support they provide to their local and regional producers, creating a sustainable environment and a better ecosystem. This creates a trusting relationship between the customer and the brand by providing the customer with education and pride to partake in the experience.

Transparency has achieved new heights with stories being told through cinematography and emotive brand films that express the inspiration and effort that goes into achieving culinary excellence.

#3 Human Brands

The concept of human brands is a familiar marketing practice and the accessibility of social media has given it further reach. In Michelin-starred restaurants, chefs become an integral part of the restaurant and, in essence, become the brand from which everything stems. For example, Core by Clare Smyth, Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester, and Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, are chef-led and create interest around their own stories and personalities that transform into the experience they create for their guests. Their style, finesse, and creative approach to culinary arts is exceptional and reflects their respective restaurants’ brand identities. More importantly, Michelin-starred restaurants deeply integrate human brands into their marketing strategy which then develops into a mutually beneficial and collaborative practice. In layman’s terms, chefs establish their own brand whilst at the forefront of a fine-dining restaurant and then employ their own human brand to further refine the restaurant’s brand value.

Humanising A Brand vs Human Brands
Humanising A Brand vs Human Brands

Why are human brands integrated into Michelin-starred restaurants' marketing strategies?

Human brands have been very effective for Michelin-starred restaurants, as it’s a great way to establish a humanised and intimate presence amongst your audiences whilst developing a deep connection. For example, Clare Smyth, a 3 Michelin-starred chef, established Core’s brand as an excellent British fine-dining powerhouse with her ability to consistently deliver to the highest standard of culinary art, prioritise team welfare and inspire women in hospitality and beyond. A human brand also introduces a humbling tone to the brand. Being transparent about struggles, mistakes and growth makes it easier for restaurants to build a more genuine connection with their audience.

Chef Clare Smyth at Core Restaurant

Now that we’ve laid out the common trends in Michelin-starred restaurants, we encourage you to consume it, digest it, and put it into practice. Michelin-starred restaurants want to express who they are, what they do, and why they do it. More so, they want to show how much work goes into their creative expertise to achieve culinary excellence. They’ve found that the best way to express this is through storytelling, transparency, and employing human brands. People love an authentic story no matter where it comes from, it's just simply more compelling. Reach out and let us know if these trends are of value to you or simply gave you a new perspective on things. We always love hearing your thoughts and, of course, your stories!

- FSM Team Stay Extraordinary


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