ONA, a joint adventure

Just imagine a woman alone, no money, no business partners just a desire to open a Gastronomic vegan restaurant in Arès !. In lots of people’s eyes, including the banks it seemed a completely crazy idea !. But I was able to count on the amazing support I received from social media and the 126 contributers to my crowd funding appeal, who generously gave 10,000 € !

Our adventure didn’t stop there. For the labour that was necessary, I organised a workfunding and an incredible workforce was mobilised : painters, masons, electricians, plumbers, gardeners, friends, future customers, strangers, helpers, local businesses, all came and helped me and in less than two months, the 22nd October 2016, ONA opened her doors to the public.

I can never thank them enough, because without them there would have been no ONA.

The AntsThe Tribe

A new setting for ONA

To celebrate our first Michelin star, I wanted to give ONA a new look. Five years after opening, it was time to update the restaurants decoration. Again thanks to social media I met interior designer, Anja Mertens, whose business is located in Cap Ferret. We immediately hit it off. She understood straight away my desire for change… without changing everything .

Together we imagined a world of green and blue where wood would be the star, where the craftsmanship and knowledge of the craftsmen would be honoured. David Henriques, a wonderfully talented carpenter in Arès, designed and crafted our bar using cedar wood and copper, a beautiful creation. For the furniture, we had a real feeling for the make Alki, a cooperative in the Basque country, who produce in France using natural materials.

Also, our lighting fabricated out of recycled paper, our glassware, from ‘La Compagnie Française de La Chine et de l’Orient‘ that incites travel, not forgetting the water based paints from Farrow and Ball. At ONA it’s not only our food that takes care of you and our planet.

ONA , like non animal origin,ONA, like an ode to the living,Like a promise to sublime what nature has to offer thus leading us to a gastronomy full of commonsense with a visual, aromatic and flavorful experience.

ONA obtains her first Michelin star

It’s because you constantly believed in me, throughout my doubts, my anxiety, my fears but during the last four years we all worked together, as a team and we obtained our first Michelin star in January 2021.

You trusted me, you carried me, nothing was won,just the opposite and you know this, but you never stopped believing in me. I am so proud of us, our tenacity, our responsiveness, our mutual help. There are so many things to say, so many thanks to give, so many emotions felt, a spinning head, shaky hands, a heart just waiting to burst !. Words just aren’t enough to explain how I’m really feeling. THANKYOU you, my team, my suppliers, my family, my customers, my advisors, my loan advisors, the crowdfunders and all my wonderful helpers. THANKYOU to the reporters and journalists glowing articles,in magazines, in newspapers, on radio and television that enhanced our notoriety. To the Bassin d’Arcachon who chose us as the winner of the contest. Finally, a massive THANKYOU to the Michelin Guide and their inspectors, who had confidence in us and highlighted our work, our engagement and our willingness to express ourselves through a different kind of culinary experience.

We will continue along the same path because this star it’s mine’s, it’s yours, it’s the impossible one, it’s the star that placed gastronomic vegetale cuisine firmly in the closed circle of French Gastronomy and worldwide recognition.
A star that has no limits, he’s adventuring outside the codes, of time and space, astonishing alchemy, realisations and incredible stories where the magic can at last weave its way.
Follow your dreams !