As a lot of you already know I used to be a restaurant consultant, so I try to go to a lot of the city's top restaurants on the show. Being a consultant entailed finding spaces, developing the restaurant's decor, wine list, menu, and finding the influential, international power set and celeb client list. I threw a lot of opening parties, and flew all over the nation promoting different restaurants, hotels, and then luxury brands at different stages. I really enjoyed doing this and being the "straw that stirs the drink" as John F. Mariani said in 1991. There was nothing better. Actually -- better was when I was at Donald Trump's wedding to Marla Maples at The Plaza and he told Sirio Maccioni of Le Circ, the legendary restaurant in NYC, "Sonja is the glue!" Those were fun pre-marriage, jet setting times. Whhheeeee!
Nothing makes me happier than putting people or deals together and matchmaking -- taking the weight off peoples shoulders for a few moments. While at FIT (the Fashion Institute of Technology), I did some modeling on the side and was working at Tavern on the Green and Charivari with Marc Jacobs (modeled for him too!). Charivari was the hottest high fashion boutique chain in NYC. It was a great experience for the life I was meant to lead and learn. After FIT, I was the manager of a high fashion boutique, Arlequin, and won the Olgivy and Mather award for Top 10 Marketing Savvy Retailers. I then took off to Europe again to model after the market crashed in the late '80s. I got into the restaurant biz when I got back from Europe the second time around at the advice of Bice, in Milan. I was a great gig for me.
One of the restaurants I frequented then and now is Le Charlot. I was introduced to several good restaurants by my dear old friend Eric Clapton. Boy did we have a great time. I loved having the time to lunch with Countess LuAnn de Lesseps at Le Charlot in this episode's first scene. We are both extremely busy with our lives and business, so this was the perfect opportunity to be together at a place I call home and they graciously agreed to have us. No small feat with the restaurants I fancy! Four Seasons, Carravagio, Cipriani, and San Pietro. These restaurants have a powerful clientele that supports the rent. So thanks to them we get an inside peak.