Good Food Blog
Green restaurantsPosted at 6:26PM, 18 June 2008 by Mof Gimmers - blogger
Once upon a time, the green ethic was the sole property of a certain type of person. These people tended to be politicised and quite possibly dreamt gluten-free, wheat-free and yeast-free. Green cafe's and restaurants would pop up in the suburbs of cities, servicing the people who usually only frequented co-operatives and wholesalers. However, since then, the world of eating has moved on and where people once scoffed at these 'hippies', many more of us are buying into ethical eating.
If you're eating out at any restaurant worth its salt these days, you'll get a complementary side-dish of morals and good vibrations. Not only that, you can sleep easy knowing that the kitchen staff are probably locally grown and free-range. Now restaurants want to proudly show off their green credentials. It's become so fashionable that it wouldn't be a surprise if Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall started rearing hens in the dining room of the River Cottage.
However, is it merely a fad or will this moral standpoint last? Over the years, dishes like foie gras have been leaving our collective menu along with crate veal and intensively farmed chickens. But just how far is the average person prepared to go? Of late, there's been a storm brewing, with various people in the food industry grumbling at the new 'food snobbery'. And if this backlash to worthy cooking didn't gel with at least some of us we probably wouldn't have seen Delia Smith cooking a menu of pre-made, packaged shortcuts in her latest series.
Go back fifty years or so and all our meat and vegetables were locally grown. Restaurants always bought locally.
Without a doubt, there is a certain disadvantage to people on tighter budgets who would like to join in the moral feast. Go back fifty years or so and all our meat and vegetables were locally grown. Restaurants always bought locally. The question was simply could you afford to eat out?
Now, the customer pays more for locally farmed meat. That fact alone could turn people away from the green menu choices, especially now that the main sound of crunching you hear is coming from the local banks and building societies.
So in future, will we stick to our ethical principles or simply kick out against a 'green mafia' whose moral stance ignores the strain on our wallets?