Angoulême: in this restaurant a robot serves the drinks

Louane, 12, has big eyes. She herself comes to recover…

Louane, 12, has big eyes. She herself has just picked up the three glasses for an aperitif on the tray. “It’s too good!”, she says, tapping the screen to make the robot go back the other way. His parents, Adeline and Jean-Claude, from Guimps, agree: “It’s the first time we’ve seen this. It’s amazing! »

A few minutes before they ordered their drinks from a waiter. The deposit arrived at the bar, at the entrance to the restaurant, via a tablet. Behind the counter, the waitress prepared the two Cokes and the Ricard, which she then placed on the robot’s tray. She entered the table number and Peanut headed for the customers.

“Practical when crowded”

“Time Saver” in case of large attendance, assures Zhongmian Xie, the boss who took over last October, this business opened for three years. In its 900 m2 room, about 200 people are welcomed that afternoon. Thanks to the two Chinese machines he bought for 20,640 euros, “Waiters no longer have to go back to the bar” and can thus concentrate on the dining room: seating customers, taking drink orders, filling up the buffet while the plates are empty… He had already introduced this innovation two years ago to his previous restaurant in Narbonne. . But “the machines are more advanced today”he rejoices.

Young Amandine loves it. Came with her family on Sunday, she took her friends, Thursday dinner. “I wanted to show them. I think it’s really nice. » But the subject shares this table, at the back of the restaurant. “It is practical when there are many people”notes Michel, seduced. “We can’t wait to have some at home too. I’ll request one for next Christmas he laughs. Marinette reveals to him: “I don’t agree at all. It takes someone’s job.”

Also shared this table with five colleagues: “It costs less for the company, but it is still a machine. It lacks the relational side. “We’re not surprised to see that in an Asian restaurant,” slips Philippe. On the other hand, “I would mind being served by a robot in a restaurant in Vieil-Angoulême”adds Alex.

“I need contact”

At the table with her two grandchildren, Michelle agrees: “I feel like I’ve been transported to another dimension, she lets go. The service is dehumanized. Me, I need contact. This robot doesn’t even make us smile. » But he hums as he walks between the tables; directly sing “Happy Birthday” to those who have an event to celebrate. And if the customer has left to go to the buffet when Peanut arrives, he waits 30 seconds before returning to the bar.

“It is complicated to find staff today”, notes Zhongmian Xie. If they don’t solve his recruitment problems, these two robots are, for the boss, a big help. He’s even looking for someone else to install the customers when they come. “I’ve been around companies, but I haven’t found anything yet. »

Indecisive experience at Cervoiserie

On the occasion of his 10the anniversary, in November 2021, Cervoiserie, Avenaud’s basement bar, tested for one evening an articulated arm for serving beer. It was a matter of highlighting the technology developed by the company Ingeliance, established in L’Isle-d’Espagnac. The profit was donated to the association Vaincre la mucoviscidose en Charente. But the operation rather served the establishment. It caused an uproar on the internet, with internet users opposing the use of a robot for the service. This has never been the goal of the co-managers, who again and again intend to advise and serve the customers themselves.

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