This success measures up to the desire to make my Afro-Latin restaurant a meeting place where everyone belongs”
What kind of issues did you face and how did you deal with them?
I was first faced with a double issue which turned out to be a real challenge; the kind of challenge that gives you the will to fight every day. This double challenge was to set up a multicultural place inspired with my own history, where my African roots were mixed with Latin colors, in the 16th arrondissement in Paris, a place that has a strong identity and its own history.
The night time economy is rather unknown, with many stereotypes. What is the advantage of working in this field?
The difference between day and night is that at night people want to be entertained, they want to travel, to get away from their daily life. Our role is to give them the chance to party, and allow them to forget their problems. Working in the night time industry is like being a magician and trying to create a moment of well-being every night, and let everyone have a great time.
Do you know many women who work in the night time industry? And what do you think about them?
Even though they are in minority, I know women in the night time industry. They are business managers just like us and fight for their companies. And that is a good thing! It is an inspiration.
African cuisine is still rather unknown. How do you stand out with Albarino?
Since Albarino is there, African cuisine is less and less unknown (laughs). We stand out with the quality of our products and because we have the stringency to reevaluate ourselves every day, working on our flaws and always looking for better quality. Every day, our cooks try to make better dishes and take the customers’ opinion into consideration. Success is up to the desire to make my Afro-Latin restaurant a place of encounters where everyone belongs…Our motto: embark on a journey of the senses at the crossroads of worlds… Albarino.
How do you conciliate between your activities?
It is a matter of organization. Of course, you can’t count the hours and you must always do your best. Every day is a challenge where you have to manage your personal life and your customers. It is a tricky job!
By Stéphanie GUITTONNEAU