In roughly one week’s time, major stars in the worlds of Golf, Entertainment and Dining all have a single point on the map in common – Monterey County.  The U.S. Open, featuring Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Brooks Koepka and the best golfers in the world, come together in Pebble Beach on June 13. Preceding this on June 9 is the season premiere of “Big Little Lies” with a cast that includes Meryl Streep, Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon.  As an appetizer for these star-studded events, the MICHELIN Guide has just put Monterey County restaurants on its culinary map and put one of its vaunted stars on Aubergine in Carmel-by-the-Sea.

“We already have the natural beauty of one of the world’s most gorgeous destinations and with the added exhilaration factor of these incredibly exciting events, Monterey County is getting worldwide attention,” said Tammy Blount-Canavan, the President and CEO of the Monterey County Convention and Visitors Bureau (MCCVB).

The MICHELIN Guide California 2019 – the first time MICHELIN has partnered with a state – was published this week and recognized Aubergine and its team, led by the highly innovative Chef Justin Cogley, with a star.  Yafa, a Mediterranean restaurant also in Carmel-by-the-Sea, was recognized with MICHELIN’s “Bib Gourmand” designation.  Also featured in the Guide are a number of other incredible eateries found throughout Monterey County including Sierra Mar at Post Ranch Inn in Big Sur, the Sardine Factory on Cannery Row, Lucia Restaurant & Bar at Bernardus Lodge & Spa in Carmel Valley and many others. 

Justin Cogley Aubergine

The MICHELIN star is the first star of many that will brighten Monterey County in the coming days.  The highly acclaimed HBO series “Big Little Lies,” which features a star-studded cast, is set in Monterey County and kicks off its second season on June 9.  MCCVB leveraged the significant fan interest in the first season of the drama through social media, blogs and promotions.

Big Little Lies

The “Big Little Lies” premier sets the stage for the 119 U.S. Open that takes place at Pebble Beach Golf Links from June 13-16.  This is the sixth time the U.S. Open has taken place at Pebble Beach and occurs on the world-renowned resort’s centennial anniversary.  The stage for this event is marked by ocean vistas, cliffside fairways and coastline-hugging greens as top players from around the world such as Jason Day, Rory McIlroy and Francesco Molinari compete in one of golf’s biggest events.

Pebble Beach

“We are in a moment where some of the very best Monterey County has to offer is being served up like a three act play on an international stage”, said Rob O’Keefe, Chief Marketing Officer for MCCVB.  “This is a fortuitous convergence of culinary, entertainment and golf events that will allow us to tap into and inspire new audiences across the globe.”

With great exposure comes great responsibility towards the environment and MCCVB will be promoting its Sustainable Moments initiative throughout all social media associated with these events.  This initiative urges travelers to be responsible and respectful when visiting. “We don’t see these activities as just ways to drive people to visit – we will use them to educate travelers that respecting our destination is critical and show them how to be safe, smart and responsible when they visit,” added O’Keefe.