How has The French Laundry evolved since its opening?

Fortunately the restaurant was here. It was 17 years old and actually, we celebrate our 17th anniversary this year, so the restaurant is 34 years old. It was a restaurant that had one menu and changed every day. It was a five-course menu and that became the formula for what The French Laundry is today. I really embraced that idea of having one menu, and I embraced the idea of having a multiple course menu as well. In reality what happened was it expanded relatively quickly where we had a five course menu with different choices in each category. Ultimately, we ended up three years having two menus—one tasting menu that is predominately protein-based and one vegetable menu (not necessarily vegetarian, but a vegetable menu), and that’s where we’ve been for the past 14 years. The menu changes every day, so there is a constant evolution to the way we present the food, to some of our techniques, a constant refinement and a constant modernization. We have new techniques, we have new tools and we have new pieces of equipment. We learn as we go, we learn from each other, we learn from our colleagues and we learn from other industries. We learn the way to do our job better.  

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