Trois Mec, the new restaurant from chefs Ludo Lefebvre, Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo, opens Thursday in the space that was Raffallo’s Pizza & Italian Foods (the sign’s still there) in a strip mall on Melrose Avenue. And to get reservations? You’ll have to buy nonrefundable tickets upfront online.
People buy tickets for basketball games, movies and concerts. And “people buy a lot of things online before they get them,” points out Lefebvre. So would you buy tickets for dinner?
Here are a few of the dozens of comments from readers who responded to Sunday’s L.A. Times story:
- Good idea. Obviously it’s prix fixe which I personally don’t care for but it’s smart. What about scalpers?
- I don’t mind paying an up-front fee if I’m GUARANTEED to be seated on time.
- If a restaurant wants us to pay in advance, their service better be worth it. Does the restaurant guarantee their waiters/waitresses are so good and efficient that no one would complain? Will they get me my drink within 30 seconds of me asking for it?
The last comment brings up an interesting point about gratuities. How do you feel about inclusion of the tip? The ticket price will include the cost of the $75 five-course meal, an 18% service charge and tax, for a total of $97.13. Beer and wine purchases will be added to your tab at the restaurant. There are no refunds or exchanges, but diners can sell their tickets and then transfer them on the Trois Mec site.
Here’s how it works: Trois Mec tickets will be available on the restaurant’s website, where a customer has to register with a user name and password before making a purchase. Registration starts Tuesday at 10 a.m. PDT, and tickets for the next two weeks go on sale at 8 a.m. on Wednesday for parties of up to six at either of two rolling seatings (between 6 and 6:45 p.m. and between 8 and 9 p.m.). Tickets will then be released every two weeks on Fridays at 8 a.m.
On the menu are dishes such as potato pulp with milk skin, brown butter, bonito, onion soubise and Salers cheese from Auvergne; chicken and asparagus with mustard flower mustard, pancetta and brioche; and strawberries with almond ice cream, rhubarb, rose ice and olive oil cake.