Photo/Illutration"Hitsumabushi," grilled eel atop a bed of rice, served at the Atsuta Horaiken restaurant in Nagoya, listed in the “Michelin Guide Aichi Gifu Mie 2019 special edition” (Asahi Shimbun file photo)

  • Photo/Illustraion
  • Photo/Illustraion
  • Photo/Illustraion
  • Photo/Illustraion

TOKONAME, Aichi Prefecture--Shoji Hijikata felt vindicated as his Japanese restaurant in Nagoya was awarded three stars in a Michelin guide along with two sushi restaurants.

"I'm delighted that we scored highly on a world standard because people have said there are no delicious foods in Nagoya,” the 58-year-old owner of the Hijikata restaurant said at a function to celebrate the honor here on May 14.

Nihon Michelin Tire Co. announced May 14 it awarded its highest three-star ranking to Hijikata and the sushi restaurants Ueda in Nagoya and Komada in Ise, Mie Prefecture, in the “Michelin Guide Aichi Gifu Mie 2019 special edition.”

The guide, to be published on May 17, is the first to cover Aichi, Gifu and Mie prefectures in the Tokai region.

“I'm so over the moon I can't think of anything. I just want my customers to eat the fresh fish of Mikawa Bay,” said Naoki Ueda, 47, the owner of Ueda.

A total of 68 restaurants received a one- to three-star rating in the guide.

Anonymous Michelin inspectors visited restaurants in the three prefectures from fall 2017. They evaluated them on the basis of five criteria applied worldwide, such as the quality of ingredients and the creativity involved in preparing the dishes.

The Michelin Guide, published in 29 countries, started rating restaurants in Japan with the “Michelin Guide Tokyo 2008,” published in fall 2007.