On Wednesday 14 October, President Emmanuel Macron announced a curfew from 9 pm to 6 am in Île-de-France and eight other French cities (Lyon, Montpellier, Rouen, Saint-Etienne, Grenoble, Lille, Aix / Marseille and Toulouse). The curfew will begin at midnight on Saturday and last for four weeks – potentially up to six weeks.
Even if new economic measures are put in places – such as partial unemployment paid at 100%, for the sectors affected by this measure – including hotels and restaurants, restaurant owners are obviously still worried. For Maxime Laurenson, chef and owner of Rustique in Lyon, this curfew will not even allow a quick first service in the evening. “We will only open for lunch from Wednesday to Sunday at first.” For Romain Le Cordroch, chef of MUMI restaurant in Paris, closing in the evening also seems inevitable. “We will surely close in order to benefit from state aid. Unfortunately, one service will not be enough for us. In the meantime, we will be open for lunch for our loyal customers.”
But even though the situation is hard, there is no question that Le Cordroch will let it get him down: “In the afternoon we will cook to help associations, as we have already done during the confinement. I will also cook a dinner for the most disadvantaged at the Refettorio on 26 October, that will be served very early so that everyone can be gone around 8 pm. It’s hard, but we must not forget that there are always worse than us.”