Fifteen years ago, you write a one-page business plan for La Cigale, and now it's a hugely popular and bustling business. Is it what you hoped it would be?
We had a picture of what we wanted La Cigale to be, but in terms of how big it would become, I had no idea! We've always had plans and ideas and it's grown over the years. We can't really expand anymore because of where we are, so we're looking for new ideas and inspiration.
La Cigale Bistro
Talking of inspiration, it was your many trips to Paris that kicked off the journey to La Cigale. What parts really hit home for you and gave you the idea?
When we first turned up in Paris in 1980, we walked up from the bus terminal to the Arc de Triomphe and absolutely fell in love! We walked and walked and walked around the city, and that's where I saw the little neighbourhoods where people are actually living and breathing the food with markets out on the street which are wonderful.
How did the book come about?
We originally started out by posting newsletters to customers, because we wanted to share tidbits from France and let customers get to know us. After several years, customers started saying "you should do a book". So in about 2009 we were going to France at the same time as my cousin and his wife. She's a photographer so we started to take some photos without any real plan of what the book would be like. The writing took about three months earlier this year.