The end is near for foie gras in California
Posted 07 September 2011 - 11:15 PM
it's easy to frame the so-called animal-rights debate when they put it in terms like the "haves" vs. the "have-nots".
I will continue to eat foie gras and rub that fact in the PETA asshats' faces, noses and throats. Amen.
Posted 07 September 2011 - 11:35 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iwrWbYR1cNwinquiring minds want to know
Stone, how are you on 'flammable' and 'inflammable'?
“One thing kids like is to be tricked. For instance, I was going to take my little nephew to Disneyland, but instead I drove him to an old burned-out warehouse. 'Oh, no!', I said, 'Disneyland burned down.' He cried and cried, but I think that deep down he thought it was a pretty good joke. I started to drive over to the real Disneyland, but it was getting pretty late.”
*proud descendant of cheese eating surrender monkeys*
Posted 16 October 2011 - 07:21 PM
The dinner was popular. They sold 320 seats for $175 in 16 minutes. Many supporters are resigned to the ban going into effect. Unlike Chicago, California's ban was strongly supported. The support for the ban seems to avoid the "we'll be seen as backward" view that apparently played a role in the Chicago repeal.
Some observers feel there will be a lot of "duck liver" showing up on the menu in the future.
In eight months, the sale of foie gras will be banned in California. But for seven hours on Friday night, at a restaurant appropriately known as Animal, three chefs presented an eight-course meal that was nothing short of a glorification of this soon-to-be outlawed delicacy. There was smoked foie gras, roasted foie gras, steamed foie gras and liquefied foie gras, injected into agnolotti. It was served with veal tongue, yogurt, prosciutto, mustard ice cream and truffles. There was even a foie gras dessert: a brownie sundae with foie gras Chantilly.
With all its gluttonous excess, and with the backdrop of the animal rights protesters, the sold-out dinner became the fattiest of food as political protest, offering a clash of competing passions in a battle that has reverberated across the nation but finally settled here, the first state in the nation to criminalize the sale of foie gras, the fattened liver of a goose or a duck.
It was also a perhaps belated realization by these chefs and their fans that a law signed eight years ago is truly taking effect and is about to change the way they do business drastically, putting California on the front lines of the battle about force-feeding ducks and geese to produce the silky liver delicacy.
“I want people to have the freedom to eat what they want,” said Ludo Lefebvre, one of the chefs behind the stove here on Friday. “Animal rights people would turn everyone into a vegan if they could. I don’t want animal rights people to tell me what to eat. Today it’s foie gras. Tomorrow it’s going to be chicken, or beef.”
He continued: “Foie gras is one of the greatest ingredients, a French delicacy. I was born and raised with foie gras. It’s like if you took kimchi away from the Korean people.”
Mr. Lefebvre’s views were echoed by diners — many of whom said they worked in the food industry, including a representative from a foie gras producer — as they walked in the door. “There is a lot of misinformation out there,” said Tom Feher, 29, a Los Angeles lawyer. “These animals are not mistreated. The last thing you’d want to do is mistreat an animal which you’re using to produce a luxury ingredient such as foie gras.”
This is not the first time a community has tried to ban foie gras. It was outlawed in Chicago in 2006, producing a backlash from restaurants that, speakeasy-like, served foie gras secretly. The ban lasted barely two years.
“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”
Posted 10 May 2012 - 05:13 AM
From an e-mail I also received tonight from Joie de Vivre e-news.
UPDATE ON THE CALIFORNIA FOIE GRAS BAN
It looks like California SB 1520 will indeed take effect on July 1st, 2012. Chef's efforts to amend the bill have not been successful so far (read this article).
Since Joie de Vivre is based in California, the law will definitely affect our ability to legally ship foie gras products to our customers. Bottom line: if you are interested in stocking foie gras for future use, make sure to place your orders ASAP. Our diminishing stock of Rougié canned foie gras from France has "best before dates" of mid-to-late 2013. Raw foie gras can keep in the freezer for 6 months.
Posted 26 June 2012 - 07:24 PM
*** fire ***
1 Tournedos Rossini - hold the foie $50
1 Foie gift $0
Posted 26 June 2012 - 11:40 PM
Apparently enforcement agencies and chefs have reached compromise - if restaurants do not explicitly charge for foie then they can't be cited. I imagine checks looking like:
*** fire ***
1 Tournedos Rossini - hold the foie $50
1 Foie gift $0
Reminds me of a time in the 70s a bunch of us were driving through Kentucky and stopped by a corner store to get some beer. The guy told us we were in a dry county, but he'd be willing to sell us some pencils... $5 for a pack of 6.
I just checked last night's French Laundry menu and they show no additional supplement for the foie course... "MOULARD DUCK FOIE GRAS SHERBET Frog Hollow Farm Peaches, Raspberries, Celery Branch and “Sablé”" However, this is not the usual torchon that they charged an additional $30 so they are stretching out how far one foie can go at no significant impact to the bottom line.
As of last night the price for the meal still shows $270.
Posted 26 June 2012 - 11:47 PM
Posted 28 June 2012 - 01:32 AM
I bet it's even less. Given the portion size expected of a typicial FL dish, they're probably using only 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) per serving. If they're using 20 ounce foie at < $50 per, that's $2.50 per serving at most.
The amount of foie they include costs something like $7. I don't think they're hurting much.
Note: tonight's FL menu does not have foie gras on it.
Posted 29 June 2012 - 05:27 AM
Posted 10 July 2012 - 04:53 PM
A French politician has called for a boycott of Californian wines following the introduction this week of a ban on the sale or making of foie gras in the Golden State.
Philippe Martin, deputy president of the Gers regional council, wants all French restaurateurs and wine merchants to pull any Californian wines they have in stock until the law forbidding the sale of foie gras in California is scrapped, the French daily newspaper Le Figaro has reported.
Foie gras is a rich, buttery delicacy made from the livers of ducks or geese fattened by gavage (force-feeding with corn). French law states that "foie gras belongs to the protected cultural and gastronomical heritage of France."
Californian wine producers would be unlikely to feel much economic pain from a French ban, however. In 2010, United States wine exports totaled 370 million liters and were worth $915 million. Less than 1 percent of the shipments – three million liters, worth $8 million – went to France, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce.
French foie gras producers are fighting back. “Even if the economic consequences [of this ban] are tiny, this Californian ruling is harming the product’s reputation,” Marie-Pierre Pé, head of the foie gras producers’ professional body, told Le Figaro.
Pé said the foie gras industry would not accept the ban without a fight, stressing that the throats of ducks and geese are more elastic than those of humans and producers “respected the physiology of the animals.”
Foie gras farmers in France are encountering widespread resistance to their force-feeding practices, and the European Union plans to ban production of the delicacy from 2019.
In addition, the French producers face increased competition from the Far East. The world's biggest foie gras operation – farming two million geese and eight million ducks a year – is being established on the banks of Poyang Lake, in China's Jiangxi Province, according to Chinese media reports, and an American investment company is said to be investing $100 million.
At present, China produces an estimated 1,000 tons of foie gras a year. France remains the market leader, however, producing 20 times that amount.