The owner of a KFC franchise in Alice Springs, Northern Territory is campaigning for recognition from the Michelin guide.
Sam Edelman launched his crusade via a Facebook group saying “Technically we meet the criteria… so let’s just see how we go!”
And what are those criteria?
Contrary to popular belief, there’s no ‘white table cloth’ requirement. In fact, the guide itself recognises its humble origins as little more than a means to get people driving.
While the list of 121 Michelin three-star restaurants includes the likes of newly crowned World’s Best Restaurant Mirazur, the suite of venues to achieve a one star rating features street food eateries such as Singapore’s Hawker Chan, which also has a store in Melbourne, and Bangkok’s Jay Fai (of Netflix’s Street Food fame), as well as dim sum specialist Tim Ho Wan.
Nowadays, the one, two and three star hierarchy is judged according to five demands: quality of the ingredients used, mastery of flavour and cooking techniques, the personality of the chef in his cuisine, value for money and consistency between visits. A ‘very good restaurant in its category’ will earn one star; ‘excellent cooking, worth a detour’ will be granted two; and ‘exceptional cuisine that’s worth a special journey’ merits three.
Edelman believes his KFC outlet meets the mark, telling news.com.au the food served up by his staff is excellent quality: the chicken is delivered fresh each morning and breaded by hand in store. More importantly, he says, people travel hours to get their hands on bucket of the venue’s fried chicken, with the next KFC outlet 1200km away.
Currently, the Michelin guide doesn’t have an Australian edition — something Edelman hopes the current attention will rectify.
“Worst case is I don’t get anything, best case is a Michelin Star, middle case, I get Michelin to come to Australia because we have some amazing restaurants here, on top of my KFC,” he told NT News.
Edelman’s mission has been covered by international media including Eater, Ladbible and Fox News.