herald

Saturday 16 December 2017

No plastic at Conrad's new restaurant

CASH ONLY: Diners sent to ATM

CONRAD Gallagher is sending a message to customers at his new Dublin restaurant -- no credit cards, please.

Diners at the chef's new upscale southside eatery are instead being directed across the road to an ATM in a Centra store to get cash.

Le Salon Des Saveurs, on Aungier Street, has been open for two months, but customers settling up their bills can only do so by cash or cheque.

One disappointed restaurant goer explained that their enjoyment of dining in the renowned chef's latest establishment was reduced when the bill arrived.



SPLIT

"I was pointed to an ATM across the road in the local Centra, there's no other ATM nearby," the customer explained.

"It would be awkward if you had a big group. Going to a restaurant like that is meant to be an experience and it completely takes away from it."

Last summer, the Donegal native moved back to Ireland with his wife Candice and their two young sons, Chandler (4) and Con (2), following the collapse of his restaurant in Cape Town. And not soon after he began his latest venture, which has left critics and customers alike split down the middle.

Although the quality of the food has been raved about since it first opened its doors in mid January, the decision to refuse credit cards has left several customers cheated out of the Michelin star experience.

Seeing as the restaurant has no official website, there is no space to advertise that credit cards are not accepted

However, the restaurant does inform diners that credit card payment are not accepted when making a reservation.

Representatives for Le Salon Des Saveurs defended the policy as being in the customers' best interest.

A spokesperson said: "The restaurant accepts cash, cheque and has accounts set up for corporate customers.



VALUE

"The reason for not accepting credit cards is because of the handling fee imposed by credit card companies.

"It is because of the fact that it does not accept credit cards that they can offer such great value to customers. It is in order to ensure the best food at the best value."

cmcbride@herald.ie

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