Baylen Linnekin On France's Absurd New 'Homemade' Law

France's restaurants and French cooking are under attack. The enemy comes from within-and wears a white hat.

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Chef
Jean-Christophe / Wikimedia Commons

France's restaurants and French cooking are under attack. The enemy comes from within—and wears a white hat.

This week, a French food blogger was issued an absurd fine of more than $2,000 for publishing a negative review of a restaurant there.

But it's the country's controversial "fait mason" law, which also debuted this week, that best demonstrates the troubled state of the country's restaurants, writes Baylen Linnekin.

The fait maison law, passed earlier this year, requires all restaurants throughout the country to put the word homemade—"fait maison"—on menus.

So just what constitutes "homemade" under the law? Food may be labeled as fait maison "only when it's made in-house from fresh ingredients."

That sounds simple—if costly and pointless. But it's an annoyingly complex law, according to Linnekin.

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