Entries in restaurant (4)


EU to Ban Refillable Olive Oil Containers

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(ROME) -- Fans of good olive oil should be pleased to learn about a new European Union ban on unlabeled, refillable olive oil bottles in restaurants.

The ban is intended to cut down on food fraud, as olive oil is a common target.

Instead of the ubiquitous olive oil containers that could be full of poor quality product masquerading as high quality olive oil, European restaurants may only serve olive oil in tamper-proof packaging, labeled to EU standards.

Top quality olive oil producers like Rosita Decimi of Umbria say the bottle ban will make it tougher for restaurants to pass off rancid-tasting oils for a high quality Italian product.

Though the new ban is intended to protect consumers from fraud, many are upset that the European Union is choosing to make this an issue at a time when they’re facing a serious economic crisis, according to BBC News.

Some restaurant owners are unhappy as well, claiming that their freedom of choice is being taken away.

The ban already exists in Italy and Portugal but will be enforced across Europe next year.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


North Korea Starving as Elite Open Luxury Restaurant

Ryan McVay/Digital Vision/Thinkstock(PYONGYANG, North Korea) -- The phrase dining capitals of the world conjures up places like Paris, Rome, New York, Tokyo and now, Pyongyang?

The capital of North Korea has been previously best known for its gastronomic delicacy of cold noodles in broth -- slyly called Pyongyang deoldeori, which translates to "shivering in Pyongyang."

Earlier this week, "The Restaurant at Hana" opened its doors in the North Korea capital.  Restaurants come and go with little fanfare in most world capitals, but it gets noticed when one opens in the so-called Hermit Kingdom, where famine is threatening to return to the country.

Located in the new headquarters of a North Korean and European joint venture electronics company that produces DVD players, the new restaurant boasts of its many amenities on its website while welcoming "foreigners and locals alike."

It's not clear why the restaurant contains a hairdresser, sauna, treadmills and a swimming pool.  But the heavily produced promotional video, with animated champagne corks popping and smiling clown fish, lingers over these stations as well as the marble-lined private dining rooms decked with flat-screen LCD TVs and glass chandeliers.  Despite being a dining establishment, the Restaurant at Hana website surprisingly doesn't mention food.  And the video does not show any people in the restaurant, either customers or staff.

The lack of food may be related to the growing food crisis in the isolated communist country.  International aid agencies like the World Food Program say the public food distribution system has collapsed and up to six million people are at risk of malnutrition and starvation.

Representatives from Restaurant at Hana's umbrella group, Phoenix Commercial Ventures Ltd, declined to be interview for this article.  They initially agreed to answer questions submitted by email, but did not respond to ABC News' questions.

This is not the first time a restaurant has caused a stir in Pyongyang.  Last fall, the country's first burger joint opened to blockbusting lines of North Koreans thirsting for a taste of the decidedly American fare.  One of the proprietors of that unmistakably capitalist venture was none other than North Korean Leader Kim Jong Il's own sister.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Australia: Restaurant Customer Has Seizure; Waiter Gives Him the Check

Thinkstock Images(MELBOURNE, Australia) -- A Chinese restaurant in Australia is being criticized for the actions of a waiter who reportedly handed a customer a bill as the man was being loaded into an ambulance after suffering a seizure while eating. 

The Herald Sun reports paramedics rushed to the Shifu Dumpling Express in suburban Melbourne Tuesday, and were loading the man into the back of an ambulance, accompanied by his female companion, when the waiter walked up and handed them a bill.

The woman says she was shocked by the waiter’s behavior, and has vowed never to visit the restaurant again.

Manager Kevin Tian does not regret the incident, telling the newspaper, “My opinion is that they ate in our restaurant, they have to pay.”

The customer was hospitalized in stable condition.  No word on whether the tab was paid.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio´╗┐


A Real Fish Story: Bluefin Tuna Is Auctioned for Record $396,000

Photo Courtesy - ABC News(TOKYO) -- For a pair of restaurant owners, it was the fish that did not get away, but they had to pay a record $396,000 to land it.

The record price was paid for a 754-pound bluefin tuna -- roughly $526 a pound -- that will be served up as sushi to customers in Tokyo and Hong Kong.

"I was so nervous before the auction began," said Hong Kong restaurant owner Ricky Cheng. "I'm just so relieved I got the fish."

High-end Japanese sushi restaurant Kyubey split the cost. Owner Yosuke Imada admitted "he went a little over budget."

The giant tuna was caught off the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido and was one of 538 shipped in from around the world for the first auction of the year at Tokyo's Tsukiji Fish Market, where tuna are known to fetch high prices.

Tuna traditionally sell for higher prices at the first auction of the year known as the "celebratory market." But the fish sold Wednesday broke a 10 year record. A 445-pound bluefin sold for roughly $225,000 in 2001.

Market officials celebrated the new record at a time when Japanese wholesalers face growing calls for tighter fishing rules, as global stock for bluefin tuna declines rapidly. The Japanese consume 80 percent of the world's Pacific and Atlantic bluefin.

The fish are the most popular among sushi connoisseurs, and sushi made from the premium fatty bluefin can cost about $24 a piece at some Japanese restaurants.

In November, the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas voted to cut the bluefin fishing quota in the eastern Atlantic and Mediterranean from 13,500 to 12,900 metric tons annually -- about a four percent reduction. It also agreed on measures to try to improve enforcement of quotas on bluefin.

The decision was strongly criticized by environmental groups, which hoped to see bluefin fishing slashed or suspended.´╗┐

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio