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Iowa Restaurant Fined for Toad-Licking Chef

I ate a meal in Davenport, Iowa once. Once! But alas it was not at the Osaka Restaurant, which was issued a fine by the Scott County Health Department last week.

Not for the usual "evidence of vermin" or "insufficient refrigeration of uncooked meat." No, Osaka was fined $335 because of a YouTube video showing its head chef "kissing and licking" toads, and then shoving them in his mouth. All of this happened in the restaurant kitchen, with the toads (note, some reports identify them as frogs) hopping around on the food prep table when not actually being kissed, licked or chewed. The restaurant owner said he will pay the fine, and will further train his staff on appropriate sanitary procedures. If you need to be "trained" not to lick and touch live animals in the kitchen, perhaps a change of career is in order.

The video has been pulled from YouTube, but the local NBC station weaved some of the action into its story on the incident, in which the chef himself says the whole thing was "like, sorta like a dare . . . or, you know, a prank . . . a joke . . . whatever." Enjoy.

Posted by Eric Lipman on August 19, 2010 at 12:11 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)

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