In October we learned that the project tentatively called "Menil Cafe" would be officially named by the public via a contest and panel-chosen finalists. The new official name was announced today at a press conference. When it opens, the restaurant will be called Bistro Menil. While 450 locals submitted their ideas, it was former Menil neighborhood resident Americo Nonini who offered the winning name. "It was my way of nodding to the French origins of the founders," he said, referencing John and Dominique de Menil. Nonino was granted a VIP preview luncheon as his prize.
About the name, Menil director Josef Helfenstein said: "We welcome this day, which marks another step forward in our long-range plan to enhance the Menil campus. Bistro Menil is a key component to the museumʼs new gateway, providing a new meeting ground for our local, national, and international visitors. Speaking for all of my colleagues and our neighbors, I heartily thank all those who participated in our challenge. We are delighted by the name." At the cafe's lead will be executive chef Greg Martin of Café Express, Café Annie and Taco Milagro fame. Bistro Menil is slated to open in September.
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