In the wake of the Chicago City Council’s recent decision to ban the sale of foie gras, actual chefs have banded together to fight back for consumer freedom. Later today a group called Chicago Chefs for Choice will hold a “Festival of Foie Gras” fundraiser. The event will boast a host of top-flight chefs from some of the city’s most elite restaurants, and proceeds will support the group’s “Freedom of Choice Fund.”
As co-founder Michael Tsonton explains, the fight is about more than any particular dish: “It’s abut freedom of choice. …Why should someone tell us what we can or can’t serve, buy or produce that the FDA puts its stamp on daily?”
Good question. Unfortunately, the Windy City’s gust of gustatory hubris looks to be only the tip of the iceberg: New Jersey, New York, and Pittsburgh are all considering similar bans. California’s foie gras prohibition will be phased in by 2012. And one overzealous Chicago alderman has set his sights on cooking oils containing trans fats or, as he calls them, “cruelty to human beings.”
Fans of lobster Thermidor, veal chops, or omelets take note: Your culinary delights could soon be a thing of the past.