We're big fans of the award-winning chef, Dave Chang, not only for his wonderful cooking and incredible shows (if you have Netflix, please check out 'Ugly Delicious'), but also for his podcast 'The Dave Chang Show'. While pop culture plays a starring role, the best part of the podcast is when he shines a light on the blood, sweat and tears that goes into being a chef - often trading war stories with other people in the industry.
Which leads us to the Michelin guide.
On an episode earlier in the year, Chang detailed the guide from a chef's perspective. And it was illuminating. From being listed in the guide, all the way through being awarded a star, the entire process seems like an exercise in stress - especially at the top of the mountain. For us - the people that get to enjoy these dishes - we look at the guide as a light source in a stormy sea. For the people that create the dishes, it's a piece of their soul on a plate, which then gets dissected by an 'expert'. The more stock people place in the guide, the more stress involved on the creative end. And the cycle continues.
That's not to say the Michelin guide is just a popularity contest - it plays an important role for consumers of food across the world, and provides a certain framework for excellence - but it's worth remembering the kind of work that goes into creating this level of food, regardless of whether you just made the list, or if you managed to grab all three stars.
Before we get started with our 'guide to the guide', it's worth recapping their award system. Essentially it's a three-star system (the more stars the better), followed by the Bib Gourmand (good value for money), then the 'MICHELIN plate' (good, quality food). Cardiff boasts a solitary one-star restaurant, and a handful of Michelin plates. Caught up? Great. Dive into our top picks from the guide below.