Chicago ‘Duckeasies’ Flout Foie Gras Ban

Here’s a great consumer freedom story to ring in the New Year: Several of Chicago’s restaurateurs are standing up to the City Council’s absurd animal-rights-motivated edict demanding that they cease serving the French delicacy foie gras.

And there’s no subterfuge necessary. Last month the Chicago Tribune reported one particularly amusing example:

When the letter came from City Hall threatening punishment if he continued to serve foie gras at his North Side restaurant, Doug Sohn framed the warning and set it beside his cash register.

And he kept serving the fattened duck liver without a care.

“We displayed it proudly,” said Sohn, owner of Hot Doug’s, a gourmet sausage eatery where the daily special can include smoked pheasant topped with foie gras chunks. “My customers and myself enjoy foie gras.”

The Chicago Sun-Times covered the resistance last week, including chef Didier Durand’s priceless “duckeasies” label for the chefs who continued to honor culinary tradition by serving foie gras. Chef Durand is no stranger to anti-foie gras thuggery, either; when he spoke out in 2005 against the ban, vandals smashed up the front of his restaurant.

Regardless of what the City Council might like, the department that actually investigates the “crime” of selling foie gras generally has better things to do. As city Health Department spokesman Tim Hadac told the Sun-Times, investigating foie gras complaints “is without question the least-important thing we’re called upon to do.”

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