Celiac disease on the rise, Jimmy Buffett’s new restaurant, a $246,250 lunch

Celiac disease on the rise, Jimmy Buffett’s new restaurant, a $246,250 lunch

Birds of paradise: Having found their long lost shaker of salt, these parrots are enjoying the Margaritaville Café in New Orleans (Photo by xypotecka) 

• The Calgary Stampede seems like a perfect place for Canada’s first Margaritaville Café, especially considering Jimmy Buffett’s 10 other restaurants are located in such resort towns as Myrtle Beach, Las Vegas and Glendale. If anyone is going to be enticed by menu items like the Cheeseburger in Paradise and Who’s to Blame margaritas, it’s oil-rich boomers from Alberta. [CBC]

• Researchers from the Mayo Clinic have found that one out of 100 people suffer from celiac disease (an allergy to gluten)—a rate 4.5 times higher than in 1959. Such mainstream restaurants as Magic Oven are already cashing in with wheat-free options, and though we’re not sure Marc Thuet could make gluten-free bread as good as his sourdough, we expect to see more celiac-friendly meal options on menus in the near future. [Globe and Mail]

• The Toronto investment firm Salida Capital will give $1.97 million to charity, which will buy eight of its employees lunch with Warren Buffett. Steak with America’s most respected investor will cost Salida $246,250 per plate—a lot more than the usual tab at Smith and Wollensky’s in New York. Who knows what Buffett would say, but a quarter-million dollars seems like a questionable ROI to us, especially if one of the diners is a vegetarian. [Toronto Star]

Mr. Chow, owner of eponymous restaurants from New York to London, is suing a former employee for trying to steal his identity. Mr. Philippe Chau recently changed his name to match that of his former boss and is now being accused of telling customers at his own restaurant that he’s the inventor of dishes at the famous chain. The real Mr. Chow points out that he is the son of “one of the eight most influential people in the history of China,” and Philippe was “primarily a food chopper.” [New York]

• London’s chefs are embracing vegetarian options as it becomes trendy for omnivores to shun steaks and chops. Celebrities are behind the flexitarian trend, too, including Paul McCartney, who’s telling fans to fight climate change with meat-free Mondays. Other flexitarians are eating less meat for health reasons, though we think the recession could also be a factor. [Independent]