NEW YORK (Reuters) - A record 76 New York City restaurants racked up coveted Michelin stars on Wednesday, led by a handful of acclaimed Japanese eateries and hot spots outside Manhattan and cementing the Big Apple's reputation as a premier global dining destination.
In the 11th edition of its New York City restaurant guide, to be launched on Thursday, Michelin handed stars to three more restaurants than the prior edition.
"The impressive number of different styles of cuisine, a total of 61, found throughout all five boroughs confirms New York's position as one of the world's most exciting dining destinations," said Michael Ellis, the international director of the Michelin Guides, in a statement.
Michelin rates restaurants in 24 countries and its stars are an internationally recognized sign of quality. Updated guides for San Francisco and Chicago restaurants will launch on Oct 21 and Oct 27 respectively.
Michelin awarded three stars, its highest distinction for "exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey" to the same six restaurants as in the prior year's edition: Eleven Madison Park, Jean-Georges, Le Bernardin, Masa and Per Se in Manhattan, and Chef's Table at Brooklyn Fare in Brooklyn.
The next tier of New York City restaurants that were each awarded two Michelin stars for their "excellent cuisine, worth a detour," grew to 10 from nine in the previous edition, with the addition of The Modern, part of the renowned Museum of Modern Art.
In the one-star category, assigned to a "very good restaurant in its category," Michelin named 10 newcomers. This brings the number of one-star eateries in New York City to 60, two more than the previous year.
Four of these first-timers offer Japanese cuisine include Cagen, Hirohisa and Tempura Matsui for turning tempura into "an art form," while Sushi Yasuda was commended for its "exemplary" sushi.
The latest guide also showcased the expanding number of quality eateries outside Manhattan. Brooklyn was home to two more one-starred restaurants, with nods to vegetarian-focused Semilla and The Finch for its take on American cuisine.
"This year's selection confirms the dynamism of the culinary scene in all boroughs, notably Brooklyn and Queens," Ellis said.
Somtum Der, Gabriel Kreuther, Uncle Boons and Rebelle rounded out the other new one-star restaurants.
Editing by Kenneth Maxwell