French chef opens fast food chain

Leading French chef Marc Veyrat is setting up a chain of organic fast-food restaurants.

1 March 2010

LEADING French chef Marc Veyrat is setting up a chain of organic fast-food restaurants.

Veyrat, known for his dark glasses, black hat and inventive "molecular cuisine," wants to bring his philosophy of healthy, environmentally-frie-ndly cooking to the fast food industry.

Following a successful trial in Annecy in his native Haute-Savoie, he is opening a second restaurant outside the town in August and then one in Paris. He also has eyes on Nice.

His restaurants are called Cozna Vera - meaning real cooking in the Savoy dialect. He said: "My first fast-food restaurant is like a laboratory to test the idea. It’s going very well, there’s a lot of demand.

"It’s real fast-food, but with a gastronomic touch. I call it ‘fast-good.’ I hope we will be opening a lot of them."

He added: "We have hamburgers and veggie burgers and dishes in bocaux (glass pots).

"That’s a new concept - customers choose the pots they want from dishes like pot au feu, boeuf bourguignon, tartiflette.

"They take the cold pot to the check-out and then put it in a bain marie [installation with boiling water] that can hold 250 pots. They swap the cold ones for a hot one and eat.

"The advantage is we can sell a lot to take away as well."

He added: "There’s also sushi - and some fun dishes like egg emulsions and frothy soups.

"Compared to somewhere like McDonalds we only do organic, and we have proper cooks doing the cooking, with our own training centre."

Mr Veyrat said he would like to see all fast food go organic.

"Eating well is a question of public health but also of protection of the land.

"Where you have farming methods that look after the earth, vegetables grow better and you are not polluting the planet. Eating organic is a matter of civic responsibility.

"With the glass pots there is no waste. It’s recyclable and much greener than traditional fast food."

Menus are from €12, for hamburger and chips and desserts like tiramisu, or just the hamburger for €7.80.

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