London To Open Darkened Restaurant
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
May 25, 2005
LONDON, ENGLAND--Edouard de Broglie has had much success with his darkened "Dans le Noir" restaurant in Paris.
So much success that he has decided to open a new Dans le Noir, which means "In the Dark", in London this July, the Sunday Times reported.
De Broglie, who is not blind, employs a staff of blind servers who wait on their customers in total blackness. Diners are shown their menus in a lit reception area, but are then escorted to the pitch-dark dining area where they experience what blind diners typically experience.
De Broglie says the darkness enhances the sense of taste and causes diners to listen more to each other.
Denise Leigh, a blind opera singer, told the Sunday Times the restaurant would put blind and sighted diners on an equal level.
"I think it is a fabulous idea," she said. "I would love to go up to sighted people and nick food off their plate. People are always doing it to me."
In 2003, Café des Signes, a restaurant run primarily by deaf employees, opened in Paris.
The café caters to customers who are deaf or hard-of-hearing, but other patrons are also welcome. Diners who do not understand sign language can either imitate the drawings shown on sign language charts, point to the menu, or come up with their own signs.