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January 15, 2009

Aromatherapy For Your Bottom Line

Enough with the logo-bearing T-shirts, baseball caps and mugs; restaurant merchandise is breaking new ground with the emergence of signature scents. Who’s got ‘em? Burger King started the trend with its men’s body spray “Flame,” playing it for a joke. But pastry chef extraordinaire Francois Payard took a more serious approach, releasing a pricey three-item line of chocolate-tinged gourmand perfumes—Inspirations by Payard—just in time for the Christmas shopping season. Right now, he’s demonstrating how food world prominence can be leveraged into a share of the $4.6 billion U.S. flavor and fragrance market. What about you?
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A Napa Valley Tastemaker Now Makes Something You Can Actually Taste

You think you’re under pressure when you open a new restaurant? Consider what celebrity chef Michael Chiarello had on the line when he opened Bottega in Yountville, CA, early last month: A carefully constructed business empire that includes lifestyle retailer NapaStyle (six stores in California; a mail-order catalog sent to millions of homes nationwide), two TV series (Easy Entertaining on the Food Network; NapaStyle on the Fine Living Network), a quintet of cookbooks and Chiarello Family Vineyards. If you had all this going for you, would you really need the headaches and time commitment that come from feeding wine country tourists in a seven-days-a-week restaurant? And what if it flops?
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