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French Bar St. Pierre – A French Bistro in Tokyo

Mar, 2018

A three-minute walk from Suitengumae station on the Tokyo Metro Hanzomon Line, French Bar St. Pierre is a favorite with local residents as well as staff at local businesses. Mr. Gaku Takahashi, the bistro’s proprietor, discusses his new background music system.

Please explain your restaurant’s concept.

St. Pierre is a restaurant where guests can enjoy home-style cooking from the south of France in a casual atmosphere. The image is that of a bistro in a fishing town somewhere in southern France where everyone is welcome. We serve seasonal seafood, and are currently offering dishes that feature oysters, marinated sardines, and other fish or shellfish with herbs. Our clientele consists of local residents as well as staff from the many offices in the area, covering a wide age group.

Was there a particular reason you chose the Ningyocho area?

Before opening my own business, I apprenticed at a restaurant in Asakusabashi. Then when I was ready to start out on my own I searched for locations near my mentor and opened my first restaurant in Ningyocho. That was about six years ago. It was a small place with a floor space of about 27 square meters. Eventually I wanted more space and a more open atmosphere, so I moved here.

What were you using for sound before installing the current Yamaha system?

There was no space for speakers in my first 27-square-meter restaurant, so after moving to a bigger place I wanted to install a proper sound system. There were speakers left over by the previous tenant when I moved in, and I used those for a while, but they were simply too big and I planned to replace them as soon as I could. Another problem was that customers sometimes reserve the restaurant for gatherings and bring their own music, but the existing speakers were too boomy at normal levels and sounded muffled when turned down. The quality was not good enough. Then I found out about Yamaha’s compact speakers.

How do you like the Yamaha VXS1ML speakers for background music?

They are surprisingly small, like the speakers in a portable audio player, and I wondered if they could actually deliver sufficient volume when I first saw them. But as soon as we played music through them it was clear that just two of those tiny speakers would provide plenty of volume for the space, and the audio quality was outstanding! The sound is surprisingly transparent, and the vocal projection is excellent.

We see that you also have another pair of speakers.

I have a second system that is independent from the background music system, specifically for microphone input, video playback from PC, and watching sports. The power amplifier is a Yamaha MA2030a, which makes using a microphone easy.

What role does background music play in your business?

Our background music is mostly jazz and French chanson. Background music directly contributes to the atmosphere, to the extent that I can’t even imagine a restaurant without it. For example, late at night we can switch to more mellow music that matches the hour and enhances the mood. It is important to ensure that the background music doesn’t become overpowering. Music is not the main feature of our restaurant, and it should not get in the way of conversation or clash with the décor. I am very pleased with the Yamaha speakers for those reasons. Even our customers comment on the great sound coming from those small speakers.

Thank you very much!

French Bar St. Pierre

1st floor, V Bldg.
Ningyocho 2-16-3
Nihonbashi, Chuo-ku
Japan 103-0013



Products MA/PA Series , VXS Series "M model" , VXS Series
Location Tokyo, Japan

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