The Michelin Guide has helped travelers find restaurants on the road since the 1920s. Their star rating system has become synonymous with the best names in food. You might expect this kind of clout to come with a steep bill, and usually you’d be right, but there are some Michelin-approved spots offering inexpensive eats.
- Hill Street Tai Hwa Pork Noodle
Location: Singapore, Singapore
Cost: SGD5 to SGD10 (~$3.50 to $7.50)
Asia’s greenest and most livable city is also home to the first food stalls to receive Michelin stars. After opening in the 1930s, Tai Hwa Pork Noodle moved to its current Singapore location in 2005, where it’s managed by the 2nd generation of the founding family. In 2016, Tai Hwa was awarded a Michelin star for “flavors carefully prepared to a consistently high standard.”
Know before you go: Don’t leave without trying bak chor mee, the stall’s famous minced-pork noodle dish.
- Tim Ho Wan
Locations: Sham Shui Po, Tai Kok Tsui, and North Point, Hong Kong
Cost: HK$30 to HK$50 (~$4.00 to $6.50)
Tim Ho Wan is famous for their delicious and diverse selection of dim sum, from classic BBQ pork buns to specialty steamed rice rolls. There are 45 global locations, including the newest in downtown New York City. For seven consecutive years, this franchise has been awarded a Michelin star for each of its three Hong Kong restaurants.
Know before you go: If you want to stop at one of the Hong Kong spots, plan ahead. Reservations aren’t accepted and the wait can take up to an hour.
- Canton 8
Location: Shanghai, China
Cost: CN¥48 to CN¥300 (~$7.50 to $45.50)
Canton 8 makes the list as the world’s cheapest two Michelin-starred restaurant. The famed dim sum joint serves refined yet original Cantonese cuisine in a modern setting with floor-to-ceiling windows.
Know before you go: Keep your party small since the tables only seat up to four people. Reservations are required.
Location: Singapore, Singapore
Cost: SGD20 to SGD60 (~$15.00 to $44.00)
Candlenut stands out for being the first and, so far, only Peranakan restaurant ever awarded a Michelin star. Peranakans (also known as ‘Straits-Chinese’) are early descendants of the Chinese who migrated to Singapore, Penang, and Malacca.
Know before you go: Though dinner is served by tasting menu, you can enjoy the dishes à la carte at lunch.
- Outlaw’s Fish Kitchen
Location: Cornwall, England
Cost: £13 to £43 (~$17.00 to $56.00)
Tucked away in the heart of a famous fishing village, Outlaw’s Fish Kitchen serves unique tapas-style seafood dishes in a 15th century fisherman’s cottage overlooking Port Isaac harbor.
In addition to local catches, Outlaw’s also offers a seasonal drink list of Cornish beers, wines, and gins.
Know before you go: Outlaw’s may be known for fast service, but book a table in advance to avoid disappointment.
- Tatau Bistro
Location: Huesca, Spain
Cost: €15 to €25 (~$18.00 to $30.00)
Bestowed with one Michelin star, Tatau Bistro gastropub serves reasonably priced tapas crafted from high-quality ingredients. The €10.50 (~$12.50) steak tartare and €2 croquetas de jamón (ham croquettes) are especially noteworthy.
Tip: Watch your meal get made through the bistro’s open-view kitchen.
Location: London, England
Cost: ~£15 to £34 ($19.40 to $44.00)
Barrafina tapas bar serves authentic Spanish dishes made with fresh seafood ingredients. The first restaurant opened on Frith Street in 2007, and there are now three locations throughout London. The Michelin-starred Barrafina is located in the trendy Soho district.
Know before you go: Stop here when you’re in the mood for drinks and a quick bite. Reservations aren’t accepted but service is fast.
- Les Genêts
Location: Pays de la Loire, France
Cost: €18 to €55 (~$23.00 to $71.00)
In 2014, a young chef and his wife opened Les Genêts in a renovated townhouse in the Brem-sur-Mer commune of western France. Two years later, the team received a Michelin star for their classic French fare with a creative edge.
Know before you go: Plan time to enjoy the peaceful garden.
- Il Saraceno
Location(s): Bergamo, Italy
Cost: €20 to €119 (~$24.00 to $139.00)
Another Michelin-starred restaurant located in a commune, Cavernago is a northern Italy institution. In addition to exquisite fish dishes, it’s praised for its sparkling and white wine selections.
Know before you go: Don’t forget your camera – everything on the menu is plated eloquently for the perfect #foodporn op.
- Blue Hill
Location(s): New York City, New York
Cost: $25 to $49
Blue Hill stands apart from the rest of New York’s many Michelin-starred haunts for its farm-to-table cooking, reasonable rates, and iconic yet intimate venue in the historical Greenwich Village. Tucked three steps below street level, the restaurant opened in 2000 out of a landmark speakeasy.
Know before you go: Treat a special someone to dinner here and enjoy a distraction-free night out. Mobile phones and flash photography are banned in the main dining area.
Tipping etiquette at these places varies from location to location. Study up on our global gratuity guide to avoid a faux pas when you pay.