Tokyo has confirmed its position as the capital of world gastronomy by extending its lead over Paris as the city with the most three-Michelin-star restaurants.
The Japanese capital now has 14 three-star eateries, compared with 10 in Paris, according to the newly-published 2011 edition of the Michelin guide to Tokyo, Yokohama and Kamakura.
The result means that, for the first time, Japan has equalled France in the number of three-star restaurants, with both countries now featuring 26 restaurants holding Michelin's top award.
The fourth Tokyo guide lists a total of 266 Michelin-starred establishments including 54 two-star (52 in Tokyo) and a record 198 one-star restaurants (174 in Tokyo).
The size and scale of the restaurant industry in Tokyo helps to partly explain its success when it comes to Michelin stars. There are around 160,000 restaurants in the city, compared with about 40,000 in Paris.
Two-thirds of the starred restaurants in the Tokyo guide serve Japanese food, including tempura, sushi, fugu, soba and sukiyaki. French restaurants, including one run by Joël Robuchon, accounted for two of the 14 three-starred restaurants.
The new restaurants awarded three stars are Araki, Hamadaya, 7chome Kyoboshi and Usukifugu Yamadaya.
Also newly published is the Michelin guide to Italy, which has awarded more stars than ever before in its 56-year history by listing 276 restaurants holding 325 stars between them.
A total of 233 restaurants in Italy now have one star (32 new); with 37 holding two stars (two new) and six being awarded the top accolade of three stars.
The restaurants celebrating their second star were Jasmin in Chiusa, Trentino Alto Adige; and Bracali, in Massa Marittima Ghirlanda, Tuscany.
Michelin now publishes 25 different guides listing hotels and restaurants in 23 countries across three continents.
By Kerstin Kühn
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