Les dîners francophones de Francine
Francine Spirandelli came to live in San Francisco in the last ten years, but through her famous Dîners francophones, she has become a serious mover and shaker in the francophone scene of the city. Charming, elegant, and with impeccable taste, Francine visits and chooses French restaurants for her networking group, more precisely, her guests, and she makes you feel like a guest when she greets you inside the restaurant. She feels proud and happy to be the hostess engaging monthly in the art of receiving people.
The purpose of the diners is networking with people (faire du social) who are interested in French culture and French cuisine and who speak some French. These diners are probably the most relaxed and happy networking events you will ever attend. And Francine makes sure that you eat well on a beautifully decorated table, taste fabulous food, and have a great time. A steady number of 30-35 people from all nationalities gather once a month in a French restaurant in the city (Le Charm, Fringale, Jeanne’Arc), sparkling some passionate conversations.
People come back month after month because they feel appreciated, enjoy the food and meet wonderful people. When I ask Francine how she can explain the success of her diners, she says: “I am very French. I try to make people feel comfortable. I am open, and I am happy when others are happy. I engage people.” “Also,” she continues, “the choice of the restaurant is very important to me, I look for ambiance, warmth, joie de vivre, and, of course, parking…”
Although her mother was American, Francine grew up in France but always wanted to experience life on the other side of the ocean. She was curious about America, and before coming to SF, she thought that Americans didn’t have any problems, that they were all happy. After learning a great deal, now she loves her life in San Francisco punctuated by her monthly francophone diners, and she doesn’t regret having moved here. The only thing that she still misses is “les saucissons et la charcuterie” of the small shop on the corner of avenue de Victor Hugo and rue de la Pompe in Paris.
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