Ketchup banned in Florida restaurant

A word to the wise for students taking culinary courses online: If you do end up becoming a chef, you may want to be careful what you don’t allow in your restaurant. One chef in a Florida restaurant seems to be learning that the hard way, as his recent ban on a popular condiment seems to have sparked outrage in some of his patrons.

Xavier Duclos, the owner of the popular Mad Fresh Bistro in Fort Myers, Florida, has recently banned ketchup in his restaurant for anyone over the age of 10 years old, according to Fox News. While the ban on one of the nation’s most popular condiments has just now come to light in the media, Yahoo reports that the menu at Mad Fresh Bistro has read “chef reserves the right to refuse service of ketchup” since the establishment first opened in October of 2012.

The move is motivated by Duclos’ belief that his cuisine needs no further seasoning or flavoring and that he should have the final say in how his food is presented to the patron. He elaborated on this sentiment in speaking to, likening putting ketchup on his cooking to insulting a work of art.

“I had someone try and sneak ketchup in here and I kicked them out. I think my flavors work,” said Duclos. “You don’t walk into the museum and tell them to change the color of the painting.”

Mad Fresh Bistro, ironically, has come to prominence in the Fort Myers culinary scene for its take on the classic American burger. Nonetheless, Duclos maintains that ketchup has no place in his restaurant, opting instead to top his patties with brie, caramelized onions and bacon, even if it’s at the risk of losing clientele.

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