Pennsylvania Chickens Are Now Being Fed By Gourmet NYC Restaurants
Life isn’t fair. You’re getting ready to microwave a meatless Amy’s burrito you bought from Whole Foods, and a bunch of friggin chickens from Lancaster County are eating four-star meals.
On certain days, a truck pulls up alongside their quiet, spacious coop on an Amish farm here and delivers a feast that seems tailored to a flock of two-legged aristocrats. Before long, the rust-colored birds are pecking away at vegetable peelings and day-old bread from some of Manhattan’s most elegant restaurants, like Per Se,Daniel, Gramercy Tavern, the Modern and David Burke Townhouse.
The idea is to feed these chickens the best possible ingredients from the best possible restaurants, so they can be slaughtered and sent back to those restaurants, where the best possible roast chicken will end up on your plate. (Well, not yours.) “The Per Se chickens will eat only Per Se peelings and bread; the diet of the Gramercy Tavern chickens will come only from Gramercy Tavern.” The early results have been, uh, moving.
“When I tasted it, I was like, ‘Whoa,’ ” said Jean-Georges Vongerichten, who plans to start incorporating the chickens into his ever-evolving menus. Witnesses say that after his first bite, Mr. Vongerichten was on the verge of tears; Daniel Humm, the chef at Eleven Madison Park, consumed an entire chicken in one sitting.
You are what you eat. And that goes for you too, Jean-Georges Vongerichten.