Being awarded 3 stars from the Michelin Guide was once the highest honor for any chef, but non plus, reports Gourmet. Changing tastes and fancy-food fatigue have now pushed three of France’s biggest culinary kings to close their doors—by choice. "Running a three-star restaurant is an honor, but it brings on terrible stress. It is passionate but exhausting," says Olivier Roellinger, who is closing his famed La Maison du Bricourt.
Despite 3,000 restaurants going bust in France and revenue down by 30%, making do without Michelin is nothing new. During France's last recession, young up-and-comers chose the low-scale bistro over white-tablecloth restaurant to launch their careers, said one food critic. "The old model of climbing the pyramid over the course of your career and struggling for every star until you get to the top doesn’t appeal to young chefs today."