Industry Insiders: Yannig Samot, Straight from the Cul de Poule

Paris’ hippest restaurateur, the owner of La Famille and newly opened Cul de Poule (translation: “hen’s ass”) on going out in comfort, his disdain for trendy spots, and his funny side.

What do you do? I make restaurants where people feel at home, with good food and good feeling.

Where can we find you on a night off? I love L’Arpège because it’s a three-star Michelin restaurant, but the head chef and proprietor, Passard, turned it into a club. I like Le Baron because for once in my life I get into a happening nightclub, and with my flip-flops. Le Chateaubriand because Inaki Aizpitarte was my first chef, and because it’s always an adventure to eat there.

Who do you admire in the hospitality industry? The restaurant owner Julien Cohen’s gang because they do intelligent bistros and all are different — L’Altro, Quai Quai, Pizza Chic, Poujauran — because it’s the best bread and yeast forever. Also, Pierre Hermé because of his macaroons of course.

What positive trend do you see in dining? I love bistros where one can drink good wines … so rare in Paris nowadays.

Negative trends? The Costes kind of restaurants pisses me off … these trendy places where all the emphasis is on the decoration, but the quality of the food doesn’t follow.

What is something that people might not know about you? I am a comedian.

What are you doing tonight? The Superdiscount evening at La Famille.

Most anticipated event you have coming up in 2009? The premier of the film “Ma Premiere Etoile” on March 25.

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