When word of mouth is as good as a Michelin star
(AFP) Waiters at a cheap and cheerful restaurant in central France have been worked off their feet since the eatery earned a coveted Michelin star... by mistake, the daily Le Parisien reported Friday.
"We're swamped," Veronique Jacquet, who runs the Bouche a Oreille (Word of Mouth) bar-restaurant in the town of Bourges, told the paper.
"I don't have much space and there are only four waiters," said Jacquet, known as Vero to the regulars who pay 12.50 euros for homemade beef bourguignon, scarfing it down over red-and-white polkadot tablecloths.
Guide Michelin France, which published its 2017 version last Thursday, mistook Jacquet's place for another restaurant of the same name.
It took nearly a week to correct the error on its website.
"We apologised to the two establishments and we are sorry to have misled our clients," the guide's Claire Dorland-Clauzel told Le Parisien.
The mistake showed up only on the website, and not in the iconic red print version or on the mobile app of the foodie bible that can make or break aspiring top chefs with its system of awarding up to three stars to the finest restaurants.
The other Bouche a Oreille is 180 kilometres to the north, in Boutervilliers near Paris, with carpeted floors, fancy linen tablecloths and serves the likes of lobster flan, calf's brain and a crunchy pear and chocolate concoction for dessert, complete with champagne, for 48 euros.
Chef Aymeric Dreux took the mistake in stride. "It was a little boo-boo that caused no harm and was corrected."
Dreux, who first earned the star in 2015, added: "I called (Jacquet) in Bourges. The whole thing made us laugh."
Jacquet's cook Penelope Salmon, asked whether she ever dreamed of earning a Michelin star, said: "No, not at all. I cook with my heart."