Israeli chef Assaf Granit’s Shabour restaurant in Paris was awarded its first Michelin star on Monday evening as the famous guide announced its top picks across France for the year.
The Michelin guide described Shabour, in Paris’ 2ème arrondissement, as a restaurant with “unbridled atmosphere, rough and ready decoration” featuring “creative cuisine with Mediterranean influences, generous and surprising, whose freshness gives it wings.”
The guide further recommended Granit’s “signature dish” of “haminados egg infused with black tea, covered in a sesame foam with a caper jus and garnished with a spoonful of caviar.”
Shabour was among six eateries in Paris that received their first Michelin stars this year, according to the announcement.
“This year chefs have truly earned it,” said Gwendal Poullennec, the international director of Michelin guides, after a ceremony broadcast on Facebook Monday evening, according to AFP.
“It’s an occasion to shine a spotlight on all these talents, to encourage them, and to keep restaurant patrons motivated,” he added, amid the ongoing pandemic.
Restaurants have been closed due to the global crisis.
“This is crazy,” Granit told Israeli news site Ynet after learning of the Michelin award Monday. “As far as I am concerned, the best thing about it is that we are four partners from Jerusalem who had a vision, invested the money and dared to open the restaurant.”
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“We are telling our story,” the celebrity chef added, “and Shabour is the connection between Jerusalem and Paris.”
The Michelin accolade comes a bit over a year after Shabour, which Granit co-owns with partners Uri Navon, the main chef, Dan Yosha and Tomer Lanzmann, was named the best restaurant in Paris by Le Figaroscope, the Parisian cultural and gastronomical guide published by the French daily Le Figaro.
Shabour is Granit’s second restaurant in Paris – his first, Balagan (loosely translated as “mess”), opened in 2017 – and 12th worldwide. He also co-owns award-winning restaurants in London and Jerusalem.
When Shabour first opened in September 2019, it earned praise in a lengthy article in Le Figaro. A month later, Forbes named it one of the 13 trendiest new restaurants in Paris. Shabour also won a major award at a restaurant competition by French culinary magazine Le Fooding.
The Jerusalem-born chef opened his first restaurant, Machneyuda, in 2009. He has described his cuisine as a “melting pot, just like Israel.”
Granit’s culinary career spans decades and has been constantly evolving, showcasing his multifaceted skill set. He was a scrupulous but good-hearted personality on three Israeli TV shows, including a local version of “kitchen nightmares” where he served up some tough love and hard truths. He’s the author of two cookbooks, gives regular lectures on the history of food, the restaurant industry, and culinary innovation, and provides custom workshops.
He’s also launched some social initiatives such as “Otto Ochel” (Food Truck) together with NGO Season of Culture, where he and a team drove around Jerusalem for over three weeks in a custom food truck, sharing the culinary heritage of the city from which he draws so much of his inspiration.
Liz Vaknin contributed to this report.