Are French Restaurants More Likely than American to Survive the Lockdown?

France is not unique in seeing its service industry shut down in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. But compared to other countries, France has a robust safety net of social security, unemployment, and healthcare. France has also implemented emergency measures that may prevent many of these businesses from going under.

As French restaurants begin to slowly reopen for outdoor service, the culinary landscape in France looks very different when compared to the United States.

Government Aid: Two Countries, Two Philosophies

In March, President Emmanuel Macron said he would do “whatever it takes” to ensure that no company, big or small, collapsed under the financial weight of the pandemic. He announced 300 billion euros in loan guarantees and tax exemptions. The government also played a role in negotiating rent forgiveness for restaurants.

Perhaps even more helpful, at least in the short-term, were easy-to-access “solidarity funds:” 1500 euros per month given tax-free to small businesses, compounded with an additional allowance of up to 2500 euros from URSSAF, a social security union for small businesses. On April 15, Gérald Darmainn, Minister of Public Action and Accounts, also announced that the restaurant industry’s taxes and social charges – about 750 million euros – would be forgiven instead of merely suspended for the duration of administrative closure.

In the U.S., by contrast, most small restaurants didn’t qualify for loans, while huge corporations like McDonald’s and Shake Shack did. According to the New York Times, big chains were able to access “tens of millions of dollars while many smaller restaurants walked away with nothing when the $349 billion fund was exhausted [April 16].” The Los Angeles Times reported that those small businesses that did qualify were reluctant to apply for the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program because of the “strings” attached to loans.

Restaurant Workers Feed Us, But Can They Eat?

As far as restaurant employees are concerned, in France, most are secure within the net of the country’s robust social structure. When forced closures were announced mid-March, restaurant workers were encouraged to first use up their paid vacation (an average of about five weeks per year) before becoming eligible for partial unemployment (the equivalent of 84 percent of their salary.) Continue reading “Are French Restaurants More Likely than American to Survive the Lockdown?”

End of Covid-19 lockdown serves up relief for Paris restaurants

Restaurant and cafe owners in Paris cheered their chance to get back to business Monday after the government said they could once again open their dining rooms, three months after being shut to blunt the coronavirus outbreak.

The sooner-than-expected reopening for the Paris region was announced by President Emmanuel Macron late Sunday, shortly before officials reported just nine COVID-19 deaths in the previous 24 hours — the lowest figure since March.

“The bulk of the epidemic is behind us,” Health Minister Olivier Veran said Monday, though he cautioned that “this doesn’t mean we can stop fighting the virus.”

Until now, restaurants in and around the capital could only serve clients on outdoor terraces, even as eateries in the rest of the country opened fully earlier this month.

Read More at FRANCE24: End of Covid-19 lockdown serves up relief for Paris restaurants

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10 French food specialities you absolutely have to try in Paris

Paris picnic

Whenever we travel to a new city, we are looking forward to trying its food specialties. That’s why I’m sharing with you my top 10 French food specialties you absolutely have to try in Paris!

The list of delightful French delicacies seems endless, so I’ve rounded up the top 10 for you. You’ve all heard about the delicious Parisian pastries, and of course the French wine and cheese don’t go unnoticed by the rest of the world, but just what are the best French specialties you can try in Paris?  Read on to find out my top 10 French food specialties you absolutely have to try in Paris!

A trip to the sea: Huîtres

oysters

If you like seafood and mollusks, you have to try oysters in Paris. Parisians love to eat oysters. There’s a specific way to eat it. You open the oyster, put some lemon in it, and eat it right from its shell. I’m pretty sure you will love the experience! My advice would be for you to go to either the Saint-Germain area, or rue Montorgueil.

On the bustling Rue Montorgeuil, there’s a fish store called Soguisa. It’s a bit expensive, but they really have excellent oysters! Plus, the salesmen will give you the best advice about the way to properly eat their products! Soguisa is the main fish store in the Montorgueil neighborhood. All the residents of this neighborhood go there to buy fresh seafood and shellfish! [ . . . ]

Continue at: 10 French food specialities you absolutely have to try in Paris – Discover Walks Paris

La Poule au Pot – Paris by Mouth


La Poule au Pot is a looker. It’s wonderful to walk in and witness the vintage wallpaper, the globe lighting, and the silver-plated serving chariot wheeling

La Poule au Pot is a looker. It’s wonderful to walk in and witness the vintage wallpaper, the globe lighting, and the silver-plated serving chariot wheeling between Pepto-Bismol colored tables. It is at once a little elegant and also a touch cheesy. One can almost picture the 80s pop stars who used to slouch into these red banquettes, the mirrored pillars reflecting their manliner and sprayed hair.

Read full review at PARIS BY MOUTH: La Poule au Pot – Paris by Mouth