Doggy Days of Summer

Happy Zero Waste Week! Well, at least that is being celebrated in the UK. Here in the States, it’s the post-holiday ‘Wait, What Day is Today?’ Week.

Back to the UK, though, I came across this piece on the recent surge in doggy bag use there. I hadn’t realized the practice of taking home restaurant leftovers was/is seen as so uncouth. A campaign involving celebrity chefs is under way in an attempt to remove the stigma surrounding doggy bags.  

While the article may be exaggerating Britons’ reluctance to take food home, I find it humorous that the practice is associated with Americans (in addition to stingy nanas).

Rebecca Hargrave believes her “unease of doggy bags” has been ingrained too deeply by her Nana’s insistence of leaving with a plastic bag often containing a “morsel of food”, ever to be overcome, especially not by a couple of celebrity chefs. Miss Hargrave said: “The British will never loose their inhibitions regarding asking for a doggy bag the way Americans do. It is not in our nature. Except of course if you are my Nana!”

image by bpw via creative commonsIf that is in fact, the widely held view, fine. I’m proud that the majority of Americans don’t need a celebrity chef to prompt them to take home food for which they’ve paid.

I also find it a tad ironic that a fancy French restaurant in London is named after the little street “urchin” from Les Miserables, Gavroche. Then again, this culinary institution is helping spur doggy bagging by “dressing up” its take-home boxes. Still, I bet if petit Gavroche heard that this gussying up was needed, he’d probably Look Down.

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