Tasteless or Not?

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Tasteless or Not?

Tasteless Or Not? Restaurant Puts Communion Wafer On Burger : The Two-Way : NPR

Kuma's Corner, a Chicago restaurant that's built a reputation with foodies for its venturesome dishes, "has cooked up a controversial burger of the month for October, garnishing it with an unconsecrated communion wafer and a red wine reduction sauce," The Associated Press says.

The burger is supposed to be in honor of a Swedish heavy metal band called Ghost. According to the AP, "members of the band dress in religious robes and wear skeleton face makeup."

Luke Tobias, Kuma's Corner director of operations, tells the AP that the restaurant doesn't wish to offend anyone. But Kuma's seems to know that was likely to happen. It says on its Facebook page that, "we think [the burger] is a fitting tribute to the supreme blasphemous activities carried out by the band itself."

Jeff Young, who blogs at Catholic Foodie, tells the Chicago Tribune that the burger "is a mockery of something that is holy."

As the website of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops says, when the faithful take communion they are expressing their belief "that this small wafer of bread, the wine in this chalice are in reality the body and blood of Christ the Lord." Wafers distributed at communion, unlike those being served at Kuma's, have been consecrated ? "the act by which, in the celebration of Holy Mass, the bread and wine are changed into the body and blood of Christ." Patheos.com has a round-up here of Eucharistic practices across Christian faiths.

The Tribune notes that "customers are free to ask for no wafer ? or multiple wafers ? with their meal." It costs $17. You can get fries, chips or a side salad with it, the Tribune adds. The 10-ounce patty, according to Kuma's, is also topped with "ghost chile aioli, slow braised goat shoulder [and] aged white cheddar cheese."

Do you think this burger is offensive? Do you think the controversial nature of the burger will help or hurt its sales? Would you order this burger? Any other thoughts?

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I'm going to go ahead and say that yes, I do find this burger tasteless. I mean, it's not offensive to me personally, but I understand why it would be offensive to those who take communion and believe in it. I think that the restaurant has a right to sell the burger as long as someone is willing to sell them the communion wafers, but I think it is a un-classy move, and it hurts my heart that people are probably going to associate stunts like that with people like me (the non-religious.) As to whether it will hurt or help, I think that there are some immature people who will think it's funny and want to order it, but probably more people who will not.

On a side note, I don't remember thinking that communion wafers were very tasty, which sort of makes this even worse for me somehow, because you know that they aren't even doing it for the irrestable taste.

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I think it is a little crass. It's not about the wafer itself, after all it is basically really just a cracker and in itself holds no meaning. If they were actually putting it in there because it made the burger taste better than I have no problem with it, and probably no one would even know that it was there. But they are just doing it just for the shock factor, which seems a little mean spirited to me.

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"GloriaInTX" wrote:

I think it is a little crass. It's not about the wafer itself, after all it is basically really just a cracker and in itself holds no meaning. If they were actually putting it in there because it made the burger taste better than I have no problem with it, and probably no one would even know that it was there. But they are just doing it just for the shock factor, which seems a little mean spirited to me.

Good point - is an unconsecrated communion wafer even a communion wafer? Isn't it just a cracker at that point? But yeah, definitely crass in my opinion.

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I would not be offended, for me it is just a cracker. But since it is not put on there for taste, I do believe it was put on for a statement or publicity stunt and I think it is making fun of people that hold communion sacred.

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I think it's fun & original. I mean, really, it comes with red wine sauce, too -- I love it! :biglaugh:

If they were using consecrated wafers, then I would say that would be offensive, or if they called it "The Blasphemy Burger" or "The Consecrated Cow," something like that would be pretty crass. Like all their Burgers of the Month, it's a tribute to a band that the owners like, and this band happens to be touring the U.S. in the month of October.

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Why does the name matter when the intent is obvious? I just think its mean and unnecessary, kind of like calling a burger a "Sacred Hindu Sandwich" or something.

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The intent is to pay homage to a heavy metal band that performs in Catholic priest vestments. And the name does matter because it shows that intent. It's called "The Ghost Burger."

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"Spacers" wrote:

The intent is to pay homage to a heavy metal band that performs in Catholic priest vestments. And the name does matter because it shows that intent. It's called "The Ghost Burger."

Yeah, but on their FB page they even say "we think [the burger] is a fitting tribute to the supreme blasphemous activities carried out by the band itself." Sure, you can say that they are just honoring the band, but they are intentionally blaspheming to do so.

I can't believe I find myself arguing against blasphemy this afternoon. LOL I don't even believe in blasphemy. My only point is that I think it's mean.

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I think it is a bit much. As this symbol, whether or not it is consecrated, means a great deal to many people. And agreed that it doesn't taste great so it's not in there for some awesome punch of flavor.

Poor taste.

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I think it is a bit much. As this symbol, whether or not it is consecrated, means a great deal to many people. And agreed that it doesn't taste great so it's not in there for some awesome punch of flavor.

Poor taste.

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I didn't like the communion dry bland wafers at the Catholic church, but the ones at the Episcopal church were quite tasty, slightly sweet, melt-in-your-mouth texture. I can see how the right communion wafer might offer an interesting addition to a sandwich.

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"Spacers" wrote:

I didn't like the communion dry bland wafers at the Catholic church, but the ones at the Episcopal church were quite tasty, slightly sweet, melt-in-your-mouth texture. I can see how the right communion wafer might offer an interesting addition to a sandwich.

Do you really think they were doing it for flavor?

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Is it offensive? I'm sure it is to some people. I don't personally feel one way or the other about it. It's a burger with the same type of style the band it's honoring has. I think for the people who are into Ghost, it'd be a kitschy meal. I don't think it's meant to be so serious.