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"Top chef": in Paris, the crazy success of Mohamed Cheikh's ephemeral restaurant


Since June 1, Manzili, the ephemeral restaurant of the winner of the 2021 edition, is always full. Report in an island of greenery and

" It is complete.

Come back just before the service, there are always a few free tables, but I cannot allocate them in advance.

»It is half past eleven at the Jardin des Plantes, in Paris (Fr), and in front of the large green terrace of Manzili, the ephemeral restaurant of Mohamed Cheikh, the winner of Top Chef 2021, Lucille has already answered about ten people .

Emmanuelle and her daughter Marion decide to wait there.

“I have been trying to book for several days on the Internet, impossible, I saw that we could try for lunch and that it was first come, first served.

We are the first, that should be fine, ”slips the mother.

“We followed the show and for us, Mohamed deserved to win,” Marion intervenes.

He gave off something, the passion for his job and the pleasure of sharing, also humility.


Read also Mohamed Cheikh, winner of "Top Chef" 2021: "I'm on a cloud"

With nearly 400 covers a day, Manzili - “my house” in literary Arabic - has been full since day one, June 1.

And until June 30.

The reservation beyond will open soon.

"We are


, it's great, and we can't do more," notes the chef.

It must not become the factory.



Behind the scenes of the ephemeral restaurant of the winner of "Top Chef"

Cap with flowers, well-trimmed beard, black t-shirt under a black apron, we follow him in the basement to the kitchens where his brigade officiates.

Seven cooks and two pastry chefs.

“We do everything at home, it's work, but we want people to have fun,” he explains.

It is not great gastronomy, but rather gourmet cuisine, well done, fresh fish, things marinated with great taste, what we want in summer, unpretentious, like me.

" He smiles.

Despite the fatigue.

Since his victory, he hasn't stopped.

Interview, filming, photos, selfies… and the restaurant where it is lunch and dinner.

"They missed restaurants"

“People taste everything, raiding, he laughs.

It shows that they had missed the restaurants.

As a result, he had to buy another oven, adjust certain quantities.

The sweet potato, for example, from which he draws a sublime muslin, he now buys 100 kg instead of 30 per day.

It's the shot.

On the terrace, Emmanuelle and her daughter are having dessert, the one with which Mohamed and Matthias Marc won the restaurant war on M 6. “Sumptuous!

It's a killing, ”says Emmanuelle.

It sells at least 150 a day, it is one of the stars of the card.

“We do everything at home, it's work, but we want people to have fun,” explains the chef, Mohamed Cheikh.

LP / Fred Dugit

"Star", Emmanuel had released the word while Mohamed came to see them.

"I am not a star", he corrects.

"You are a great cook," she insists.

“We try, but the road is long.

He is so, humble and available after each service.

“To show them that I'm really there, to thank them too, it's all because they watch Top Chef.


Arrives Pascal, 59 years old, from Albi (Tarn) with Cathy.

He didn't have a reservation either.

Ditto for Lily and Romain, young students from Rouen.

“There was only a table of four left, we spontaneously offered to share it with Pascal and Cathy,” says Romain.

Even if it means going there with the nerve… ”Banco.

"I had a great time, both the meeting and the meal," Lily enthuses.

“We are students and I found the card affordable,” she continues.

We were a fan of Mohamed on the show, we were able to have fun without being afraid of the bill.

“Starter and main course, they get away with around thirty euros each.

"This is also the spirit of the house, sharing, meeting", smiles Mohamed delighted that these four were able to have lunch together.

With nearly 400 covers a day, Manzili - “my house” in literary Arabic - has been full since day one, June 1.

LP / Fred Dugit

“You brought values, sharing and respect that are so lacking today,” says Pascal with emotion.

I am happy that you won, you are the ambassador of those who have been told

you don't belong here

, and who have persisted, you give hope.

”Mohamed receives compliments and congratulations with humility, sometimes surprised“ that [he] is taken as an example ”.

"How would you like not to be touched by this."

Downstairs, we work hard, this job is hard, but it's also wonderful and when you see people's smiles, you know why you're doing it, he confides.

Restaurateurs are artisans of happiness, and I am a restaurateur before being a candidate for

Top Chef



He says it thus, has not yet integrated in his speech that the winner is him.

Source: leparis

All life articles on 2021-06-21

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