“We no longer go to the restaurant to eat! »

Chef Jean Imbert has just won a star at the Plaza Athénée. However, the unexpected arrival of ” star friend in the kitchens of the palace, to take over from Alain Ducasse, had animated many debates on its legitimacy. But the quadra has understood for some time now that today it takes more than the plate to attract customers. Result: it was less the quality of its Bellevue lobster with its jelly medallions that was noticed than a decorum worthy of a theater stage.

“In a few months, the Plaza has become a performance hall, with stucco and gilding, a central table that unfolds to infinity and wreaths galore », laughs Pierre-Yves Chupin, from the Lebey guide. Same opinion on the side of the gastronomic critic Stéphane Durand-Souffland:

“Around 10 p.m., a stentorian voice accompanied by a bell announces: “Ladies and gentlemen, the pastry shop”, a curtain rises and reveals the sugar team hard at work. It’s “At the theater tonight” resurrected. »

Restaurant or entertainment? Probably both. And this change in the gastronomic landscape is observed throughout the sector, weakened since the pandemic and its successive confinements. Gone is the restaurant whose only attraction is the quest for flavours, make way for “experiences”, “places” where the decor and atmosphere are as important as the dishes served.

Profession: food influencers

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