Chef Maximillian Bennett, 28, received a whole slew of negative reviews for is new restaurant Barnetts at the Old Bank House in Somerset because the menu featured foie gras.
The young chef, who harbours dreams of gaining a Michelin star one day was the recipient of activist anger over the fact that his new restaurant’s menu featured the controversial goose live ingredient.
Despite the fact that foie gras is one of the most used ingredients in two and three Michelin star menus in the UK, Old Bank House received a host of negative one-star reviews for having it on the menu.
"We did not want to argue, nor did we want to start a debate – civil or otherwise.,” the chef told Metro UK. “However, given that Facebook has a commenting section, it spiralled rather quickly, which we weren’t expecting. We were merely asking for a yes or a no, and it was finalised as a firm no, so respecting this, we have removed the dish.
“We have taken into account that we have offended some of you, so for that, we apologise,” he continued. “On the other hand, we are saddened by the fact that not all opinions offered were delivered with dignity and consideration. It is never acceptable to make threats, nor are the recommendations as we have not even opened yet. The comments and private messages were extreme to say the least, considering that in our poll we shared no opinion about the matter".
"Ultimately we have listened to the public’s resounding verdict and have decided to not put the foie gras on the menu", chef Bennett continued, "We hope changing the dish means we can focus on the opening of our new business. We understand the strong feelings on both sides but would like to ask you to now to respect our decision and allow us to persevere in trying to make a success of our small business. We hope to see some friendly faces in our restaurant. We welcome you all with open arms.
Recently the city of New York announced proposed legislation that if passed, would outlaw foie gras in the city’s restaurants. There certainly seems to be an appetite for the fatty goose liver, as it is a regular dish on restaurant menus, however, there is a concerted effort by activists and conscious consumers to have it consigned to the past.