It didn’t take L.A.’s chefs long to start re-planning their menus after today’s momentous news that selling foie gras is legal again in California.
“We are really excited to be given the opportunity to serve foie again, and it will be back on the menu as soon as we can get it in our hands. Maybe even by the end of the week,” Animal chef Vinny Dotolo, whose groundbreaking restaurant made its name with dishes like foie gras moco loco, tells Los Angeles magazine. “It will be nice for the restaurant to gain back part of its original identity.”
On social media, chefs rejoiced like they had won Powerball, and Eater reports that Josiah Citrin will start serving foie gras at Melisse tonight. Over at Terrine, Kris Morningstar has put in an order for 22 pounds of foie gras that will likely be in by Friday, and the chef is doing an all-foie gras dinner menu on Monday.
But you don’t even need to have a restaurant to celebrate this foie-tastic day. The Twitter account for chef Wes Avila’s Guerrilla Tacos truck had this to say today: “alrightalright
#FoieGras is legal in California again! @GOURMETIMPORTS I’ll be calling soon! #foie #tacos to come soon.”
Alex Brown of foie gras supplier Gourmet Imports, who Los Angeles magazine reached earlier in the day and said he would comment on today’s news “as soon as every chef in L.A. stops calling me,” is going to have some kind of week.
Of course, L.A. chefs are a crafty bunch, and some of them haven’t ever really stopped serving foie gras. Restaurants from a Culver City spot known for its charcuterie to one of downtown’s most heralded dining destinations defied the ban. Today, Alma chef Ari Taymor, proprietor of that downtown restaurant, tweeted that he’s “been serving non-gavage foie the entire time.”
Gavage, in this case, refers to the force-feeding of duck and geese, one reason that foie gras has been a controversial ingredient. The debate about foie gras will continue anew with today’s news, but it’s clear what side many of L.A.’s chefs are on in this fight.