To overcome language barriers at Maison Boulud, his new Beijing restaurant—and his first outside the U.S.—Daniel Boulud had the Chinese staff endure mandatory three-month courses in English and French. Meanwhile, the famed chef took a crack at Chinese—if by less rigorous means. “I got Rosetta Stone,” he says, referring to the language-teaching software, before admitting, “I have a hard time.” The restaurant opens in July near Tiananmen Square with a menu featuring squab stuffed with foie gras and watermelon gazpacho with prawn. Though it will also offer its twist on Peking duck, diners shouldn’t expect too many local favorites. “We don’t want to teach the Chinese how to cook Chinese food,” says Boulud.
Image: Christopher J. Morris/Corbis