Restaurant Of The Week (2)

What’s in a name?

If you are opening a new restaurant in these recessionary times, you need to have a great product. And what better way to grab the attention of prospective punters than by coming up with a catchy name.

This was presumably what Isabelle Jolie, the owner of a soon to be opened Vietnamese restaurant in Keene, New Hampshire, thought.

Playing on the name of a favourite soup of mine from the region and the name of the town, she came up with Pho Keene Great restaurant. Rather good, I thought.

But an almighty stushie has broken out.

The Keene city manager, the aptly named Elizabeth Dragon, claimed that it sounded like a profanity and, in any case, Jolie hadn’t asked permission to erect her sign.

Bowing to pressure, Jolie has removed the sign and the two sides are due to meet to resolve the spat, perhaps over a bowl of pho.

Still, every cloud has a silver lining and Jolie is selling Pho Keene Great tee-shirts on-line ,yours for $24.99.

Next thing we know, she will have added Gordon Ramsay to the mix.


Device Of The Week


As a small boy I collected autographs. I still have the books and some of the signatures may be worth marginally more than the pen, ink and paper used to collect them.

These days the scrawl of a celeb is thought to enhance the value of the book or product that they are endorsing. But can you be sure of the provenance of the autograph? Of course, if you have queued up at some emporium for the privilege of getting the “personality” to scrawl some bon mots on your purchase, you can be reasonably certain. But what about pre-signed product?

This week in a court case involving the cook, Gordon Ramsay, the existence of a shady device, the Autopen, was revealed. Celebs, apparently, fed up with the tedium induced by writing their signature multiple times resort to the use of a machine called the Autopen which uses a signature smart card or USB flash drive to store and replicate their autograph. Ramsay claimed that such a device was used to put his signature on a rent guarantee. The beak threw the argument out but in the process shed a new light on the value of pre-signed products.

You have been warned!