Angry Michelin Chef Calls Out Freeloading 'Influencers'



In a rare move, the chef-owner of a Michelin-starred restaurant in Ireland has publicly called out a blogger for requesting a free meal in exchange for “online exposure," saying he’s “had enough” of such requests.

Fed-up Garrett Byrne, of Campagne restaurant in Kilkenny, which has held a Michelin star since 2014, decided to share the email from an anonymous blogger, requesting a “vegan meal for two” that would include “several dishes on the menu” in a exchange for a write-up and social media coverage, on the restaurant’s Twitter page.

“I don't normally tweet about them, but this one just struck a chord,” Byrne told The Telegraph. “We get about 10 per year on average … I don't think they are exploitative for the most part, it’s just I don’t think restaurants should entertain them.”

The email promises “Significant online exposure on both our blogs and social media accounts; Inclusion in our 'Vegan Guide to Ireland and/or N Ireland' posts,” plus “Live tweeting, Facebook, Instagram, as we visit your restaurant.”

Byrne has described the reaction to his tweet, which has been liked over 2000 times at time of writing and been covered by global media, as “crazy,” with many tweeters offering support for him and ridicule of the offending blogger, though some have accused Byrne and the restaurant of underhandedly gaining exposure through it or being behind the times marketing-wise, and criticised him for publicly shaming, though he doesn't name names.