Thomas KellerEnlarge Photo
If you know American cuisine, you know Thomas Keller. And if you know, Thomas Keller, you know his flagship restaurant, The French Laundry in Napa Valley. And if you know Napa Valley and California and the world's current fascination with all things seasonal and green, you will not be surprised to learn that The French Laundry is now offering a BMW ActiveHybrid 7 as part of its concierge service. According to a BMW press release, the car will be made available to restaurant guests "on a limited basis as available". (We presume that "limited basis" means "limited to guests who haven't consumed a jeroboam of pinot grigio".)
While this sounds like a lot of fun for restaurant guests, it also sounds like a fairly random pairing of brands -- though not as random or weird as Chef Keller creating a menu item inspired by BMW. You'd think that such an entrée might be oily and stuffed full of itself, but in fact it sounds pretty good: "Four Story Hill Farm Apple Fed Pork Loin with Bratwurst, Braised Red Cabbage, Apple Dumplings and Grain Mustard Sauce".
Not exactly what we want in our stomachs after the aforementioned pinot grigio -- especially when we're hitting corners at 90 mph -- but for stationary teetotalers, it's probably great.
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Yountville, CA and Lemont, IL – September 9, 2010… Chef Thomas Keller today announced a new partnership with BMW of North America, which will enhance the overall guest experience at Keller’s acclaimed restaurant, The French Laundry, through the creation of a concierge service featuring the BMW ActiveHybrid 7. The collaboration dovetails perfectly with both partners’ long-time commitment to establishing new and creative ways to elevate the premium experience.
The partnership announcement was made from the BMW Championship at Cog Hill Golf & Country Club in Lemont, IL. Chef Keller, a guest at the tournament, played yesterday in the BMW Championship Pro-Am Tournament, which pairs 70 of the world’s top professional golfers with amateurs.
To mark the collaboration, Keller crafted a seasonal, BMW-inspired recipe that will be featured on The French Laundry dinner menu this evening in celebration of the partnership. The dish is Four Story Hill Farm Apple Fed Pork Loin with Bratwurst, Braised Red Cabbage, Apple Dumplings and Grain Mustard Sauce. Keller and his staff were inspired by BMW’s Bavarian roots and wanted to create a delicious dish reminiscent of the foods from this area.
“As a BMW owner for more than 32 years, I’ve always appreciated the brand’s attention to precision and detail because my very first vehicle was a BMW 320i,” said Keller. “At The French Laundry, we’re always seeking out ways to heighten our guests’ experience, and so I am delighted to be able to work with BMW to establish a concierge car for the restaurant, for those guests that wish to add a new element to their dining experience with us.”
The BMW ActiveHybrid 7 is the world’s fastest hybrid and brings together luxury, speed and fuel efficiency. The new BMW concierge service at The French Laundry will be offered to restaurant guests on a limited basis as available.
“The number one hobby and interest of BMW customers is fine dining, which makes a partnership with Thomas Keller and The French Laundry a natural fit,” said Tom Kowaleski, Vice President Corporate Communications, BMW of North America. “We look forward to working together with Thomas and his company to identify and develop future opportunities to expand this partnership.”