Besides the MICHELIN Stars, there are two other awards given out by inspectors: the Bib Gourmand and the Green Star. Of these three distinctions, the Green Star is the most recent, first appearing in the 2021 editions of the MICHELIN Guide. The first Estonian edition of the guidebook includes two Green Star restaurants, Fotografiska and Põhjaka Manor.
What is a MICHELIN Green Star?
This award recognizes restaurants that hold themselves to the highest sustainability standards and show innovation and accountability while meeting ethical and environmental standards. These restaurants offer top-notch, eco-friendly dining experiences. By working with sustainable producers and suppliers to minimize waste and remove non-recyclable materials from their supply chain, they inspire both keen foodies and the hospitality industry as a whole.
Any restaurant in the MICHELIN Guide is eligible, and there are no specific criteria, as every restaurant and its surrounding region work in a unique context. The MICHELIN Inspectors look for restaurants that genuinely commit to sustainable practices. They consider the source of the ingredients; the use of seasonal produce; the restaurant's environmental footprint; food waste systems; general waste disposal and recycling; resource management; and the communication between the team and the guests about the restaurant's sustainable approach.
Let's take a closer look at Estonia's first two MICHELIN Green Star restaurants. One is a self-sustaining countryside haven. The other is located in the hippest neighborhood of the capital. Both have sustainability at the heart of their business.