From today, the residents of Nîmes will no longer have a Michelin-starred restaurant to visit in their town.
Olivier Douet, the chef at Le Lisita, and Stéphane Debaille, its sommelier, have decided to drop the star and have renamed the restaurant Tendances Lisita. The menu will have a more traditional brasserie feel.
The restaurant is opposite the world-famous Roman amphitheatre in the southern French town.
The owners told L'Hotellerie magazine that they wanted to "rid themselves of the elitist image that goes with being a starred restaurant." Winning and keeping a Michelin star requires certain levels of service and quality that can push up costs for restaurant owners.
They believe that a brasserie-style restaurant opposite one of the town's main attractions is likely to bring in more customers.
The current menu offers treats including a salad of summer truffles at 16.40 and Canadian lobster at €28.70. The owners say that their new offer will have a fixed price menu of €25-30 as well as a good range of à la carte dishes.