Yelp and Michelin: Not So Different After All, Nate Silver Study Finds

When it comes to having a good meal, Yelpers trust that they can find the best local restaurants through Yelp’s website and mobile app. For those who prefer the opinion of professional food critics, like in the Michelin Guide, they may be surprised to find that we’re pretty much on the same page when it comes to opinions on great local restaurants. After previously working with us to find the best place for a burrito in America, famed statistician Nate Silver and the FiveThirtyEight team decided to see how Yelp reviews stack up to those of the historic dining guide.  

To compare the two, Silver looked at the star rating of New York City restaurants published in Michelin’s 2015 ratings guide and compared them to those restaurants’ overall Yelp rating and average review count, using restaurants that had lost their Michelin stars since 2005 as a control group. His findings? The correlation between Yelp stars and Michelin stars is highly statistically significant, showing that the two share similar opinions and ratings of restaurants. What can we say? Yelpers know they’ve found a good dish when they taste one!

Head over to FiveThirtyEight to see how all the stats break down.