In Calais, the Bistro du Port is investing in food lockers

The place is well known to Calais residents: the Bistro du Port, with a view of the old port, reopened in March. The new managers are not lacking in ambition and want to multiply the services.

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Port Bistro

Did you know ? Unused for several years, the port restaurant, located on the first floor of the old terminal, reopened at the end of March. ” At the beginning, we responded to the call for tenders at the new port. But the investment was too great », say Karine and Laurent Planque, new managers of the Bistro du Port. ” Then, we realized that the port did not offer catering and that this place, which I have known very well since my childhood, remained empty. “continues the wife. The couple had A real favorite » for this establishment with a view of the port, the belfry and even Cap Blanc Nez (when the weather is nice!). ” It’s a damn beautiful structure! “Slips Laurent Planque, also chef at the Milano restaurant, place d’Armes in Calais. The self-service bistro has a 450 m2 kitchen completely fitted out by the port manager. The couple still invested nearly €80,000 to add, in particular, a pizza oven.

The windows of the bistro, located in the old ferry terminal, overlook the old part of the port.  PHOTO JOHAN BEN AZZOUZ
The windows of the bistro, located in the old ferry terminal, overlook the old part of the port. PHOTO JOHAN BEN AZZOUZ


A digital canteen

The restaurant welcomes employees of the port of Calais who, for the most part, are posted 24 hours a day. So to meet their needs, the couple signed a partnership with the company Le Casier Français to install food vending machines. ” At first, they will be set up on three sites with 24 lockers per site, to test », Announce the managers. Two distributors will be located within the port enclosure, in the control area and near the sovereign services. A third will be located near the shipping company offices. Accessible to all therefore. ” The idea is to create a digital canteen, which we will supply regularly, with filling slots that we will establish as we go. “says Laurent Planque. Everything will start in July.


A catering service

For now, the Bistro du Port is open 7 days a week at noon. It is also possible to take takeaway meals. The only downside? To access the building of the old ferry terminal and therefore the establishment, you need a badge, held by port employees. So you have to be invited. Recently, drivers blocked by paperwork can eat there. But not the general public. ” We would like to open to everyone, as in the past, but for the moment it is impossible », Regrets Karine. The building remains private and still belongs to the port manager (the Strait Ports Operating Company). Unable to count on tourists or customers from Calais, the couple developed, in parallel, a catering service to make their large kitchen profitable. ” We still have to define our economic model but we are not lacking in ambition concludes Laurent.

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