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The French Kiss & The Michelin Guide

The French know a thing or two about food and sex...

If you're looking for an extra-special place to take a date, why not consult the French? The pinnacle culinary review guide is the French Michelin Red Guide, produced by the French company that makes auto tires and other tourism tools. Everyone knows that getting good reviews feels great, brings confidence and often leads to financial success. You'll certainly rate well with your girl if you treat her to one of these fine dining establishments.

Here's how the guide works; A small number of restaurants receive from one to three stars. Currently in all of Europe, New York, and San Francisco there are only 56 restaurants with three stars, 170 with two stars and 1300 with one star. (These are facts you can use to impress your date on the way to dinner.) According to the Michelin website, the star ratings are as follows:

* The quality of the products
* The mastery of flavor and cooking
* The "personality" of the cuisine
* The value for the money
* The consistency between visits

* One star indicates "a very good restaurant in its category," a good place to stop on your journey.
** Two stars denote "excellent cooking, worth a detour," with specialties and wines of first-class quality.
*** Three stars reward "exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey," where diners eat extremely well, sometimes superbly. The wine list features generally outstanding vintages, and the surroundings and service are part of this unique experience, which is priced accordingly.

In mid November, 2007, Michelin is planning on releasing restaurant guides for Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

The Michelin Guide Los Angeles will cover hotels and restaurants in Beverly Hills, Hollywood, Westwood, Downtown, Santa Monica, Ventura Blvd. and Pasadena. The Michelin Guide Las Vegas will include Las Vegas Blvd., Downtown, as well as areas east and west of the Strip.

"These two cities offer residents and visitors alike an eclectic mix of restaurant options, with an amazing variety of cuisine choices from all over the world," said Christian Delhaye, President Michelin Maps and Guides. "The inspectors have enjoyed getting a taste for these exciting, dynamic cities and discovering the restaurants that bring character and flavor to the region. In Los Angeles, these restaurants are found throughout the metro area, in the most popular parts of the city to off-the-beaten-path neighborhoods. In Las Vegas, however - as you might expect - the top restaurants are concentrated in a small geographic area."

The decision to award a star is a collective one, based on the consensus of all inspectors who have visited a particular establishment. A written description of each establishment and a variety of other symbols will give readers further insight into an establishment's ambiance, type of cuisine and specialties, and wine list, customized to American tastes and needs. After your gourmet feast, hopfully your date will want to indulge in another French tradition... the French kiss.


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