6 Michelin-Starred Restaurants in Northern California for 2024

Acclaimed chefs provide insight into their success.

San Francisco Bay Area Restaurants Michelin Northern California

Northern California is home to some of the most exquisite and diverse culinary experiences in the world. With its fertile land, ideal climate, and vibrant culture, it’s no wonder that this region attracts food enthusiasts from all over the globe. 

One distinction distinguishing the region is its extensive collection of Michelin-starred restaurants: nearly half of the state’s total reside in northern California. These establishments have been recognized by the prestigious Michelin Guide for their exceptional cuisine, service, and the overall dining experience. According to the guide’s rating system, one star is “worth a stop,” two stars is “worth a detour,” and the highest rating—three stars is—“worth a special journey.” 

Admittedly, this list is not exhaustive, but we will give you a taste of our favorite six Michelin-starred restaurants in Northern California for 2024.


131 North St, Healdsburg, CA  

Kyle Connaughton Michelin starred restaurants in San Francisco Bay Area
Kyle and Katina Connaughton

Located in Sonoma’s wine country, executive chef Kyle Connaughton offers an ever-changing, seasonal menu inspired by his experience living in Japan and working at the Fat Duck, a world-renowned restaurant. Inspired by the Japanese concept of omotenashi, the practice of wholehearted hospitality and mindful attention to detail, each dish is a work of art with intricate plating and complex flavors that leave your taste buds dancing. The restaurant offers an 11-course tasting menu for those looking to try a little bit of everything, with optional wine pairings. Each dish is carefully crafted to highlight the ingredients and flavors of the season, making for a truly unforgettable dining experience. 


HL: How did receiving a Michelin star (and/or additional stars) impact the restaurant and staff?   

KC: We were very fortunate to receive two Michelin stars after our first year and the third after our second year. The whole team had been working so hard since the [restaurant’s] opening, and we had all built the restaurant together from the ground up. It was such an amazing recognition of everyone’s hard work to go from the long process of construction, development, and opening to that third star. It’s a really deep bond that all of us who worked through it had and still have. I know it’s a really special memory we all keep with us and are reminded of every day when we go into service for that evening. 

HL: What sets the restaurant apart? What is the team’s mindset regarding setting standards of excellence or improvement?  

KC: We don’t focus on the accolades or the pressure of maintaining them and our standards. Instead, we really focus on a daily discussion about “good change,” or what’s called kaizen in Japanese. “Good change” is our mantra, meaning maintaining our standards but also self-improving and improving as a team incrementally each day. 

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HL: Do you have any new experiences or events to note in 2024?  

KC: We are really excited to return to Blue Sky in Park City this coming January for a 10-day residency featuring a new idea we are working on at SingleThread. This will be more of an omakase experience that includes a documentary film to bring guests closer to the stories of the farm, sustainable fisheries, and artisans. This residency serves as a sort of “trailer” for what we are developing. 



178 Townsend St, San Francisco, CA  

Richard Lee San Francisco Bay Area Restaurants
Richard Lee

 Saison, located in the trendy SoMa district of San Francisco, is more than just a meal; it’s an art piece. The restaurant’s décor in shades of beige and white, along with its minimalist furnishings and open kitchen, create a serene and inviting ambiance that makes you feel relaxed and at ease. Each dish is beautifully presented, showcasing chef Richard Lee’s expertise in design, texture, flavor, and contrast. Every course is perfectly timed, making sure that it strikes the right balance of flavor on your palette. Combined with the best 1990s and 2000s Spotify music playlist, the experience engages all your senses.   

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HL: How did receiving a Michelin star (and/or additional stars) impact the restaurant and staff?   

RL: I am eternally grateful for the recognition from Michelin, and I am even happier that our team gets the recognition they deserve. Being a part of the Michelin community also means we are fortunate enough to be invited to participate in some super cool events. In December, I cooked alongside Daniel Humm at Eleven Madison Park, where much of my culinary journey started. Then I’m going to Abu Dhabi with my chef de cuisine, Alek Zito, for a Michelin Guide festival. I am so honored to be in the company of chefs to whom I have looked up and now get to consider my peers.  


HL: What are your plans for the future and any new experiences in 2024? 

RL: I come to work every day striving to be better than the day before, and having a team that feels that way, too, is really, really special. We believe in purposeful change. We are focused on what we want Saison to be: an inspiration for ourselves and for the industry as a whole, with constant collaboration and evolution. This year in 2024, we have some of the world’s greatest culinary legends joining us in our kitchen, which is something I have dreamed of. We are also expanding Saison Hospitality overall, so it’s definitely a busy and exciting time. 

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HL: What do you think sets the restaurant apart? 

RL: When we first opened, we were a pioneer of open, wood-fired cooking. This remains a core factor to our ethos, and we have developed it tremendously over time. Our space is unique because the guests and staff—and the dining room and kitchen—are not divided. It’s a culture-shifting experience we are very proud of. Sustainability is also inherent to our style of cooking and preparation, minimizing waste with our fermentation program and always trying to serve multiple parts of a vegetable or animal in one course. As executive chef, I have been able to highlight the bounty of Northern California with cooking that tells the stories of the season and of my own background. As a proud Chinese-American, this means the world. 


Harbor House Inn Restaurant  

5600 CA-1, Elk, CA  

Matthew Kammerer San Francisco Bay Area Restaurants
Matthew Kammerer


If you’re looking for an extraordinary restaurant in Mendocino County to indulge your taste buds, then look no further than the Harbor House Inn Restaurant. Perched on a seaside cliff, this elegant resort offers a culinary experience harmoniously combining local and organic ingredients to create cuisine that represents the area. Chef Matthew Kammerer is known for taking a sea-to-table approach to his cooking. He forages local ingredients and uses them in his dishes to ensure you get the freshest and most authentic taste. From oysters to abalone, you can taste the freshness of the sea and the ruggedness of the surrounding forest in every dish. 

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HL: How did receiving a Michelin star (and/or additional stars) impact the restaurant and staff?   

MK: Receiving the second star was a boost in confidence, inspiration, and motivation for the team. We don’t do it for the stars, but having the barometer of cuisine that is the Michelin Guide recognizing our efforts will always be fruitful in keeping the team pushing toward our next goal. 
HL: What sets the restaurant apart? What is the team’s mindset regarding setting standards of excellence or improvement? 

MK: We have gathered a group of the most talented, hardworking individuals who all believe in the common goal of creating a singular experience focused on our region of California and sustainability. It’s like compounding interest. We get a little better every day, and over time, the restaurant we worked in just three months ago seems miles behind us. This is a team effort; not everyone can shine every single day. We are all human. However, having everyone on the same page allows us to move forward, no matter what. 

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HL: Do you have any new experiences or events to note in 2024? 

MK: Yes. In 2024, we’re planning to invite chef friends and makers for more collaborations at Harbor House. We’ll be sharing updates on Instagram! 


PRESS Restaurant 

587 St Helena Hwy, St Helena, CA 

Phillip Tessier San Francisco Bay Area Restaurants
Philip Tessier

PRESS Restaurant, not your average dining spot, is a culinary adventure that takes your taste buds on a unique journey. Trained at Michelin 3-starred Le Bernardin in New York, chef Philip Tessier’s goal is to create a culinary experience that embodies the Napa Valley region. PRESS has earned a reputation as not only one of the top food destinations in the area, but also a wine destination, thanks in large part to master sommelier Vincent Morrow. If you are lucky, they might take you on a tour of their 10,000-bottle collection. 


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HL: How did receiving a Michelin star impact the restaurant and staff? 

PT: None of us knew the exact impact receiving a Michelin star would have, but by far the greatest satisfaction in being given this recognition was the immediate sense of pride and belonging evident in the team from the moment we received it. It was amazing to watch the sense of validation, joy, and mutual pride in the work everyone had done to get us to this point of recognition and achievement. Over the course of the year, we have seen a significant shift as Michelin has given us greater visibility, not only to guests and potential partners, but also in attracting better talent who are looking for the next step in their career at a higher caliber restaurant. Our clientele has also shifted, not only in the demographic sense but also in their mentality, being more willing to trust us with their experience and having expectations that align with who we are and the experience we offer. 


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HL: What sets the restaurant apart? What is the team’s mindset regarding setting standards of excellence or improvement? 

PT: At PRESS, we are constantly evolving, setting clear goals, and challenging ourselves not only to achieve them, but to push past them and continue to the next layer of excellence, quality, and experience. We’ve assembled an incredible team that continues to grow. I think the thing that sets us apart more than anything is the sense of teamwork and a focus on the team experience at the restaurant. We have a long way to go yet, but we are determined to do things differently than where we’ve come from, and a sense of transparency and accountability among our senior team is at the core of that. 



400 Silverado Trail N, Calistoga, CA 94515 


Michelin starred restaurants in San Francisco Bay Area
Rogelio Garcia

Auro Restaurant, located at the Four Seasons Napa Valley, is helmed by chef Rogelio Garcia, a native of Mexico, who brings his passion for food and creativity to the forefront of every dish he creates. He believes in letting the ingredients speak for themselves and ensuring they are the focus of every dish. From starters like beef tartare and broccoli caesar salad to hearty mains like the dry-aged ribeye steak and duck confit, each dish is masterfully crafted and beautifully presented. In addition to its delectable menu, Auro Restaurant also boasts an extensive wine list with several hundred labels from California, France, and Spain. You may choose from a range of wine-pairing options to complement your meal or go for a personalized wine tasting experience guided by the restaurant’s expert sommelier, Derek Stevenson.  


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HL: How did receiving a Michelin star impact the restaurant and staff? 

RG: Receiving a Michelin star is a chef’s dream, much like winning a championship, a GRAMMY, or an Oscar. To be able to be recognized for your work and the teams’ collective effort is an incredible feeling. Everyone has worked extremely hard in putting this together. It’s a huge milestone in my career, and I couldn’t be more excited to be doing it here in Napa Valley. 

HL: What are your plans for the future and any new experiences in 2024? 

RG: Plans for the future include continuing to grow with the resort and the restaurant. My cookbook, Convivir: Modern Mexican Cooking in California’s Wine Country, comes out in September 2024. I can’t wait to share it with the world. The stories, recipes, and photography are all incredible.  


Michelin starred restaurants in San Francisco Bay Area

HL: Any new experiences or events in 2024? 

RG: We plan to enhance our offerings by continuing our hyper-seasonal menu, focusing on farm-to-table concepts that highlight local purveyors and ingredients, and showcasing the richness of Napa Valley’s bounty with a global perspective. Additionally, we have our wine dinners where we partner with exceptional wineries to complement their wines with my cuisine. In line with our successful, collaborative four- and six-hands dinners, similar to those in Los Angeles and San Diego, we also organize food and wine events. This January, we are excited to start the year by showcasing Auro at the James Beard Foundation in New York City. 



275 CA-128, Geyserville, CA 

Douglas Keane San Francisco Bay Area Restaurants
Douglas Keane

The culinary team, led by James Beard Award winner chef Douglas Keane, is back after a 10-year hiatus; however, he is picking up where he left off with dishes that are as visually stunning as they are flavorful. From the sushi-grade hamachi with hazelnut aioli and apple to the seared foie gras with quince and brioche, each bite is a symphony of taste and texture. Visiting Cyrus restaurant is more than an experience, which is evident after indulging in the 17-course culinary adventure aptly named “Dining Journey.” Food lovers will feel like they’ve reached new heights of gastronomical bliss. 


Michelin starred restaurants in San Francisco Bay Area

HL: How did receiving a Michelin star in the first year impact the restaurant and staff? 

DK: It’s not something I spend much time thinking about. It’s really Michelin’s thing. They aren’t very transparent or communicative in their decisions, so the healthiest thing I can do for my peace of mind is to just focus on what we do in terms of taking great care of our guests, staff, and the investors who were willing to believe in us. Whatever Michelin decides to do with their stars we won’t change what we do. We are appreciative of their marketing power and wish them success on each of their launches. 


HL: In your own words, what sets the restaurant apart. What are you most proud of? 

DK: Honestly, this might sound arrogant, but it is a unique restaurant in every way. The last version of Cyrus was our interpretation of everything that we had seen throughout our careers with our unique twist or spin, but Cyrus 2.0 is our version of “what if?”  What if you could create the most magical experience for guests, staff, and investors that wasn’t duplicated anywhere in the world? The location, the dining journey, and the staffing model are all unique. I’m most proud of the progress and changes we’ve made that have started a dialogue about changing the dysfunctional staffing model that has existed in our industry for decades. We’ve made real changes, and it’s working, and we’ve done it without compromising the guest experience. We are functioning at a very high level with a smaller team of cross-trained, highly skilled professionals, and they are happy to be here. 


Michelin starred restaurants in San Francisco Bay Area

HL: Any new experiences or events in 2024? 

DK: We are rolling out our Club Cyrus experiences, which are a series of special dinners: whiskey and wagyu; fried chicken, caviar, and Champagne; white truffles; and a few more. 

Also, I’m planning my memoir and essay on the industry, Culinary Leverage, to be published in 2024.  It’s an honest, gritty look at where this industry and I myself went wrong, getting to a place where we cared more about what a water company and tire company thought of us versus how our guests and employees were treated—and how to possibly fix it, in my opinion.  

Noël Burgess

Noël Burgess is an East Coaster living in Northern California wine country. His goal is to promote diversity and inclusion in wine, food, and travel with a focus on the places, the products, and most importantly, the people! Noels work can be found in VinePair, Wine Enthusiast, Travel & Leisure, Thrillist, San Francisco Magasine, and many other media platforms. Follow him on Instagram @mrnoelburgess and at noelburgess.com.