fh - sorry that we did not live up to your culinary expectations... sorry also that I was out of the country on holiday the weekend you all came, so could not meet you in real life! (It did, however, give me time to think about and write that ridiculously long explanation of the TRONC issues - now you know what I do on my holidays - sad innit?!)
I understand that our main sous-chef was actually ill on Saturday. That might be a partial explanation, but I am not trying to make any excuse if the food was not as tasty as you might have expected.
I guess everyone has different expectations and taste buds; some people have commented in the past that the tastes were just too strong or weird, so it may be that we have dumbed them down a bit. I guess you can't please all the people all the time but we really appreciate constructive comments such as yours.
I also love Zuma and was moderatedly impressed with E&O, but I reckon that your wallet will be dented much more severely by both of those restaurants. (I haven't eaten at Roka yet, though I believe the wallet-damage is less there). You might try Nahm in the Halkin Hotel as well, though I haven't eaten there for a long time now partly because you might need to remortagage first!
Jackie R - the free publicity is, I guess, a bonus for us at a time when we had a bit of rather nasty anti-publicity. I have been an occasional brower on the SE1 Forum for many years (I have lived in Borough for about 7 years) but this is the first time that I have actively participated apart from once posting a couple of responses to Natalie many years back. It has been rather fun, actually. Maybe I will have my tuppence worth on other threads in future....
Phoney - didn't really understand your posting. We probably do employ slightly too many staff - I think I already stated that our staff/customer ratio is higher than most restaurants. I don't think we pay the staff stingily (because they tend to stay). I know we don't pay ourselves too much.
cc - i have actually been to Nahm - luckily not having to pay because it was my birthday and my sister was being generous. they make one of the most subtle red curries i have ever had the fortune to eat. pity that its never really full and there is very little atmosphere. i also happen to agree with you about E&O its not in the same league as Zuma but quite good - the particular curry that i love there is the monkfish which has a lovely citrus flavour. Also the watermelon and duck salad. Roka is less of a dent than Zuma - sort of a cheaper way to get a borrowed zuma food buzz since I believe they are under the same management! If you do go there try the lamb which is very good - though the restaurant can be a hit and miss thing and is a bit snooty without having a reason to be.
I do appreciate your taking my comments in the positive light that they were made. This alone will guarantee that I will return afresh to Champor Champor - but will make sure next time that you are there so that I can benefit from some of your suggestions on what i should opt for from the menu. The decor is delightful btw - if i ever find someone romantic enough to appreciate it fully it would be perfect place for a date.
I must say I am seriously impressed with CC's candor in explaining the business viability and taxation issues, and how the TRONC scheme operates. Full marks for having the brass-neck to say "this is how we operate".
I've just been catching up on this story and must say that I that I recommend CC to everyone I know because the food is so yummy.
On the tip issue, I'm not normally a supporter of it added to the bill ( I recently went out in my 1 hour luch break and my soup took 50 mins to be served, and they still added the charge, the manager had a real go at us when we asked that it was taken off!!!), but in the case of CC the customer service is so good that I have no problem with it.