Michelin-starred restaurants are recognized throughout the world as being the best for that ultimate culinary experience. While Southeast Asia, renowned for its own flavorful and diverse cuisine which has long captivated the hearts and palates of people all around the world, is now not just famous for eastern delights but also western as well. If you’re a food enthusiast planning a Southeast Asia vacation, one way to experience the best of this region's culinary scene is by combining the two!
The Journey of Michelin Stars in Southeast Asia started in 2016 when the Michelin Guide first came to Singapore. Since then, recognizing its culinary excellence, Michelin-starred restaurants have expanded across the region, now being located in six countries: Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, and the Philippines,
With so many Michelin restaurants to choose from, it can be hard for food enthusiasts planning their trip to know where to go. So, to help get you started both exploring the amazing, unique flavors of Southeast Asia, as well as indulging in some of the best European cuisines in the world, we have put together what we think are the top 5 Michelin-starred Restaurants in the region.
3 Stars. French Cuisine
Being an iconic fixture in Singapore’s fine dining scene since 1994, Les Amis, a three-Michelin-starred restaurant is known for its exquisite French cuisine and impeccable service. Chef Sebastien Lepinoy helms the kitchen, bringing his wealth of experience from Michelin-starred restaurants in Europe and Asia.
The menu features classic French dishes made with the finest ingredients sourced from around the world, and signature dishes include the Burgundy Snail Ravioli with Comté Cheese Foam and the Wild Scottish Langoustine with Curry Leaf Emulsion. A meal at Les Amis is a truly indulgent experience, with prices from $$$ to $$$$ (Photo: Les Amis.)
3 Stars. European Cuisine
Located in a beautifully restored shophouse in the heart of Singapore's Chinatown, Restaurant Zén is a three-Michelin-starred establishment that offers an intimate and exclusive dining experience, with only 24 seats available for dinner.
Under the leadership of chef Bjorn Frantzén, Restaurant Zén’s menu is a reflection of both his Scandinavian as well as Asian heritage, with dishes that showcase the best of both worlds. Signature dishes include the Hokkaido Uni with Truffle Cream and the Norwegian King Crab with Rice Cracker and Seaweed. The restaurant serves only one tasting menu, which includes nine courses and canapes. Ranging at $$$$ to $$$$$, it is one of Singapore's most expensive dining experiences (Photo: Zén.)
2 Stars. Thai Cuisine
Led by chef Chumpol Jangprai, who is known for his innovative take on traditional Thai dishes, Rhaan is a two-Michelin-starred restaurant based in Bangkok that celebrates the rich and diverse flavors of Thai cuisine. Dishes on the menu are made with the freshest local ingredients, such as the Grilled River Prawn with Tom Yum Foam and the Southern-style Yellow Curry with Beef.
Priced at $$ to $$$, Rhaan is a great choice for all foodies who are planning on going on a Thailand vacation. In fact, Rhaan also offers an even more affordable lunch-tasting menu, making it accessible for foodies on a budget (Photo: Rhaan.)
2 Stars. French Contemporary Cuisine
Known for its contemporary French cuisine and innovative tasting menus, Chef's Table is a two-Michelin-starred restaurant located in the heart of Bangkok. The kitchen is led by chef Henrik Yde-Andersen, who is known for his playful and creative approach to food, showcasing a blend of classic French dishes and modern culinary techniques. Culinary delights to try include the Hokkaido Scallop with Wasabi and Green Apple and the Braised Beef Short Rib with Black Garlic. Prices range from $$$ to $$$$ at Chef's Table, so it is one of the pricier dining experiences in the city (Photo: Chef's Table.)
1 Star. Malaysia
Based in Kuala Lumpur, Dewakan is a Michelin-starred restaurant known for its creative take on Malaysian cuisine. Chef Darren Teoh uses locally sourced ingredients to create visually stunning dishes, such as the “Langoustine” with fermented prawn head and pumpkin, and the "Beef" with fermented mushroom and herbs.
Another great reason to visit Dewakan is its minimalist decor and serene ambiance which provides a fantastic relaxing atmosphere for a truly memorable dining experience. The restaurant also is committed to supporting local farmers and producers and offers unique house-made sodas and teas. Prices at Dewakan range from $$ to $$$ (Photo: Dewakan.)