The Family Meal – February 28th, 2017

Hello Tuesday, and Happy Mardi Gras!

A relatively slow news weekend means a relatively brief Family Meal today. Let’s get right to it…

Thailand will get a Michelin guide – apparently through a deal where the Thai government forks over $4.1M over five years to fund the little red book?? So… good news, L.A.! You just need to drop around $820k a year, and the guide is back! Cheaper than those stadium deals…

“It was the best kind of happy ending” is really, really, actually, honestly how Michael Bauer ended his review of Tenderloin bathhouse / restaurant Onsen. It’s got to be hard for critics to come up with clever new ways to describe so many similar dishes, but… no.

Noma NewsRené Redzepi and crew shut it down on Friday with a synchronized thumbs up, and yesterday, Ali Sonzo, the longtime dishwasher and “heart and soul of Noma,” took down the sign after being named a partner in the next incarnation of the restaurant (due open in December, after the move and that stint in Tulum). Sonzo’s dedication earned him the promotion, but there was also a bit of sentimentality involved: “Redzepi’s father also worked as a dishwasher when he arrived in the country as an immigrant from Macedonia. Two other employees – the service director, Lau Richter, and the Australian restaurant manager, James Spreadbury – have also been made partners.”

Trump (eats) Steak… at his own hotel, well-done and with ketchup. There is a lot of predictable commentary on this, but I think the most useful theory comes from Extra Crispy editor Kat Kinsman, who tweets, “I wonder if the well-done steak preference is a germaphobe fallacy thing. Like, ‘Get all the pink out, that juice is what makes ya sick!’”

This Family Meal is brought to you by Bilgola. Bilgola is a creative agency providing design services for the food service industry. The Bilgola team takes a straightforward, collaborative approach to solving problems for businesses of all sizes, from startups to global brands. Services include beautifying emails and invites, event pages, websites, menus and more. Happy customers include Jamie’s Italian, Nespresso and Kingsley’s Steakhouse. Have a creative challenge? Hit Bilgola with it –

PRO TIP: If you keep tigers in your restaurant, don’t. Also, make sure to invite PR to that meeting with legal where you decide to sue an animal rights group. This advice may be a little late for mega-chain Landry’s, which not only has to pay the animal rights group in question $450k, but also spread their story far and wide for free. I didn’t know Landry’s kept white tigers in cages beneath their seafood spot in Houston. But now I do.

Surprise, Chicago: Phil Tadros is being sued again! This time it’s Bow Truss employees who claim he owes them overtime money. Last time (still ongoing), it was the Profit.

Oscars so non-political. South Beach Food & Wine Fest on the other hand… “At Saturday’s tribute dinner in his honor, [José] Andrés, who became a U.S. citizen in 2013, wore a black T-shirt that carried the phrase “I am an immigrant” under a white chef’s coat, according to the Herald. He revealed the T-shirt by removing his chef’s coat at the event.”

That’s it for today. Speaking of awards shows: Quick heads up to the good folks at the James Beard Foundation: A neat PR trick would be to accidentally hand a big food writing award to an up-and-coming newsletter writer, and then be like OOPS, sorry, we actually meant Bill Buford. Boom – viral.

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