Monday, June 20, 2011

Social cleansing

Chef Marco Pierre White is not someone known for his customer care skills. He has recently bought the historic Angel Inn in Lavenham, Suffolk and alienated regulars by getting rid of Strongbow and Foster’s. He says “I don’t like Foster’s and Strongbow. I like traditional ales and ciders. If they don’t like that, I’m sorry.” Fair enough, but surely if you want to change the product mix you take your customers with you by offering a choice rather than doing your best to antagonise them. While he may be conjuring up an image of a traditional rustic ale and cider house, in reality what’s the betting it will be a poncy, pricey gastropub, and he quite simply doesn’t want working-class people riff-raff in there? They probably drop fag-ends on the floor outside as well.