There's about to be a better way to pick out restaurants in California. The Golden State is getting its very own Michelin Guide. Michelin reportedly received $600,000 from California's tourism board as part of the deal. However, the publication of the new guide will be independent from the state's tourism board. The money that was paid will be used to underwrite the extensive costs that go along with expanding the presence of Michelin inspectors throughout California.
San Francisco already has its own Michelin Guide. However, the word so far is that the San Francisco version will now be absorbed into the statewide version. The hope among tourism officials in California is that a new statewide guide will hopefully draw in more tourists and encourage more road trips to highly rated dining destinations throughout the state. Michelin specifically appeals to fine-dining fans. Michelin mentions aren't cheap. Some tourism boards around the world have paid as much as $1.8 million to bring in the guides.
A deal has only been reached for a one-year agreement between California and Michelin. That means that any future collaboration will depend on the return on investment that is seen after the first year. It is not unusual for tourism boards throughout the country to pay money to attract influencers in the dining world. For instance, tourism boards in Louisiana, Washington, Texas and Kentucky have spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to host seasons of 'Top Chef' in their cities. The justification for the big spending is that the presence of a high-profile food series could bring in millions of dollars in tourism revenue.