Thursday, January 31, 2008

Campanile: Writers' Soup Kitchen

More on food in Los Angeles.

As I'm sure you've heard, there's an ongoing writers' strike in Hollywood. The economic repercussions are significant here as the trickle down effect becomes more and more obvious. If writers don't work, actors, make-up artists, and key grips don't work. Editors have nothing to edit. Caterers have no one to feed. And money, that used to be free flowing in restaurants and bars, has dried up. At a time when a recession looms over the nation striking fear in the hearts of democrats and republicans everywhere, Hollywood is feeling a similar jerk of panic.

Some are making due as they can. An interesting approach taken by local fancy-pants restaurant, Campanile, is to open a soup kitchen for writer's union members. (I'm sure similarly affected unions might appreciate to be included, but that's just me thinking out loud.) A card carrying writer can go to the restaurant on Wednesdays with a group of guests (or not, if you're a lonely, brooding writer-type), and everyone gets a 3 course meal for $18. Apparently, that's half-price. And, as chef and owner Mark Peel states:
"We're not making any money on this, but it is filling the restaurant. The truth is, no matter what your profit margin is, if you're not selling anything, you're not making any money."
Another plus for the restaurant is that any new customers brought in might expand the restaurant's business when the economy gets back on track. And I think writers and everyone else are looking forward to that.


Chief Family Officer said...

Campanile was always on my list of places to try before my kids were born but we never quite made it. And now it'll be years before I get there, I'm afraid. But I wish I could get in on that deal!

MetaMommy said...

We love it there. And while they are kid friendly (they provide sippy cups and crayons), it would definitely be a meal well appreciated without kids.

There's always grilled cheese night, though :-)