How green is your favorite restaurant?

As I did a little legwork about Chef Jeremy Barlow for a recent post, I learned that his fine dining restaurant, Tayst (recently closed), had earned Nashville's first green restaurant certification. I had been aware only dimly of certified green restaurants. Apparently only two entities in Kentucky have earned the certification: the wonderful Dupree Catering in Lexington, and the Mammoth Cave Hotel in (yep) Mammoth Cave.

As it happens, I've traveled a lot in the last month, and eaten in more restaurants than my annual allotment usually allows. Beyond noticing whether the napkins were paper or cloth, I doubt I had one green thought while enjoying the food and fellowship of these meals. I applaud any restaurant willing to earth stewardship to the giant challenges of running a successful food business. The Green Restaurant Association offers help in "greening your restaurant," and asserts that an environmentally friendly approach to a food business can also make economic sense.

My most paradisical travel destination—Key West, Florida—has no certified green restaurants, I now know. Surely dining in the open air, without heating or cooling, could help with that?

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Rona RobertsComment