Restaurateur Garima Arora has become the first Indian woman to earn a Michelin star for her restaurant “Gaa” in Thailand’s Capital Bangkok. The Michelin Guide Bangkok, Phuket and Phang-Nga 2019 Selection, which was released on Wednesday, recognised 23 restaurants in the region with one star and four with two stars.
“When we launched, there was no Michelin guide here,” Arora told The Hindu. “So it was never consciously what I wanted, but of course we’re so happy.” The Michelin guide for the region was launched last December.
Arora grew up in Mumbai and worked as a journalist before moving to Paris to study at Le Cordon Bleu. She worked in Copenhagen’s Noma restaurant, which is consistently ranked as one of the best restaurants in the world. She has also worked with famous chefs Gordon Ramsay, René Redzepi.
In Bangkok, she worked with Gaggan Anand, whose eponymous restaurant retained its two Michelin stars on Wednesday. “I think what [Michelin] looks for in Asia is probably a little more diverse than what they look for in Europe, but it is difficult to pin point exactly what that is,” Arora said.
International Director of the Michelin Guides Gwendal Poullennec said this year’s selection reflects the “growing talent in Thailand’s culinary scene.”