The Roux brothers have banned photos of their food
<massive eye roll>
I mean, seriously boys?
For those that don’t know there was an article in The Evening Standard this week that quotes Michel Roux
I’m really getting so upset about people taking pictures. We put up a card at the door saying ‘No photos, please’.
I mean, what are they doing? Maybe once during the meal you want to take a little photo of something because it’s unusual. But what about the flavours?
What about the flavours Michel? Surely the flavours are just between you and the diner? They don’t matter to other people, but it really matters to us that we share a photo of the dish in all it’s glory, the flavours don’t matter, the picture is what matters.
A picture on a phone cannot possibly capture the flavours.
Well of course it bloody can’t, though give Apple a couple of years and I am sure that will also be possible. I am sure it will only be a matter of time before Sniffergram becomes a thing alongside Instagram.
There is no doubting that the Waterside Inn is an extraordinary restaurant, and worthy of its three Michelin stars, I can’t say for certain as I haven’t had the pleasure of visiting personally. I can’t help but wonder though how many people have booked in and visited off the back of seeing the culinary creations on a friend’s Instagram feed. Or because they saw photos shared on Tripadvisor or some other social media platform. Because that is how advertising works boys. Yes it’s a bit braggy as it comes across as “look where I am” or “we have just spent £160 on dinner, but LOOK AT IT”, and? So what?
I don’t give a monkey’s about the flavour right then to be honest, because flavour is subjective. For instance, if somebody were to describe the this to me: Salade de homard à la betterave et crème fraîche acidulée au caviar osciètre I would probably roll my eyes. This is one of the dishes on your Menu Exceptionnel and to have lobster salad and beetroot with caviar explained to me would probably put me off to be honest. But having seen that dish on Instagram (search the #WatersideInn hashtag) I am sold, it looks incredible.
Surely you want the advertising don’t you? Why would you not want diners showing off what it is you have created and presented to them, to showcase the incredible talent of your team?
I love photographing the dishes of food I have been presented with. One of the photos that got me more interaction on Instagram recently than any other post, was this one:
Yes. Yes that is a fish finger sandwich. No you shut up. Three course dinner is included so I ignored the amazing list of main courses because in my opinion the fish finger sandwich is the greatest of all sandwiches and should never be ignored. Ever. No don’t bother arguing with me, I’m not discussing it. It just is. @featherswoodstock is a legend amongst hotels for having it on their menu alongside the gins. Did I mention the gin? #solidaritea @birdseyeuk
In fact the chef of the Feathers came out the next night to personally serve our main courses to us and say thank you for the fishfinger sandwich love. Now when I think of that weekend I will remember the sandwich, and meeting the chef. My sharing that picture on instagram got the conversation going on line. Maybe even generated a bit of interest in the hotel and its restaurant, who knows? I know that it will be something I can talk about in the future if anybody ever mentions fish finger sandwiches. I can join in the conversation again and share the picture again, tagging the hotel as I do.
You might not like it boys, but this is how the world works now and if you start telling your diners what they can and can’t do in your establishments then you might find yourselves without a clientele very soon.