Jeff Clavier and myself [Marc Goldberg] will be hosting a dinner at l’Area (brazilian/lebanese fusion cuisine) on April 26 at 20:00. Expected topics: vc financing, blogging, photosharing (buzznet users most welcome :-), and frankly anything we'll all feel like talking about.
After a busy day at the Les Blogs conference at the French Senate and drinks party at l'Alcazar yesterday, which I'll blog about later, I look forward to seeing Rodrigo, Julien, OlivierSeres, richard lander, Julien André, Philippe, Ludo, Francisque, Keyvan N., Owadenko, Elizabeth Press, Yann Lechelle, Alain Lefebvre, Xavier Maury, Stéphane LEE and others who reserved tonight at L'Area. See you there!
Update: Here's a slideshow of the dinner.
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Last night I enjoyed what is probably the best japanese food, and sushi, I've eaten in Paris, at restaurant Hyotan on 3, rue d'Artois, in the 8th arrondissement. It's always a good sign when a restaurant is frequented by its own countrymen and yesterday we were the only non-japanese there. The atmosphere is simple, the service is courteous and the prices are affordable. There are many great Japanese retaurants in Paris, particularly around rue St. Anne ... but this one is now at the top of my list.
Apart from the regular stew and potatoes I ate during my compulsory military service in Finland, about 17 years ago, I quite enjoy Finnish cuisine. For the record, my Finnish mates regularly asked me for a few drops from the Tabasco bottle I toted around to add flavor to the otherwise bland rations. Why is army food bland? So as to please most people!
Now there's a new book about Finnish delicacies, with recipes: Chef Gero Hottinger declares love for Finnish cuisine in his new book -Simply Delicious!.
Gero Hottinger has just published a new cookbook about Finnish cuisine called Simply Delicious!. It is an ode to his key philosophy, using local ingredients of the season, rather than flying exotic stuff halfway around the world.
(Via Christian Lindholm.)
You may also learn more about Finnish gastronomy at this great site, Virtual Finland.
"Take it or leave it" is not an attitude that will bring customers back to your business.
Tom Peter's story about UPS / FedEx highlights the importance of customer service, a concept which still hasn't caught on in most restaurants and bars in Paris!
Case in point: The Barfly -- the swanky restaurant/bar on Av. George V -- lost some customers last night. Here's the story:
The place was pretty crowded and my friends and I were standing close to the bar and had been there for an hour. We had ordered a beer each and had waited a long time to get served. Granted, the place was crowded and it was no big deal. When another friend arrived, we ordered a glass of wine and waited (and then waited, and then waited some more) before being served ... and when it arrived the wine was hot! We pointed this out to the barman, who said he couldn't do anything about it since the wine glass had just been washed. In other words,"take it or leave it"!
Not about to spoil the mood, I paid and kindly pointed out we had waited 20 minutes to be served. He said nothing as he took the money: 20 Euros for an 8 Euro glass of wine. We chatted as we waited for the wine to cool a bit ... but after 10 minutes we pointed out to the barman we still hadn't received our change. His reply?
"You waited 20 minutes for your wine and now you'll wait 20 minutes for your change!"
Needless to say, we returned the wine, got our 20 Euros back and walked out of the place, after complaining to the manager ... who shrugged and did nothing about it.
Adieu, Barfly! The place had been degrading over the last couple of years anyway, so the poor service was not much of a surprise.
Among others, Joi Ito also got lousy service in Paris.