Plated meatloaf and sides

One Dumpster Diving Chef is Taking his Dinners Underground

Our Take

This Dallas chef is no stranger to eating food that he finds in a dumpster. While he has been doing it for years, most of those eating the food have been unaware. It first started when he was disgusted with the amount of food being thrown out at the restaurant he worked at. So he started sorting through the trash to feed himself, his roommate and his girlfriend. From there he went a step further. For five years he recovered food from the dumpster and cooked it up for restaurants patrons. No one at the restaurant knew, including the other employees. A practice that surely would have been frowned upon. There is no hiding his dumpster sourced food now. The chef has rented a space to host a series of dinners that he describes as an “upscale experimental dinner series”. The dinners will be five courses each, however the menu won’t completely set too far in advanced as it will be based on what the chef can find. Are you brave enough to eat a meal that came from a dumpster? Even if you are not, it may make you rethink the food that you are throwing out. Expiration dates aren’t the only guide you should go by with some foods. With just a little online research you can find recommendations for food storage and the length a product may good for. Before you clean out your fridge and throw everything away, do a little research and become more informed.

Dumpster diving has been a way of life for Finn Ahern for more than a decade. The 43-year-old chef moved to Dallas from Bushmills, Ireland, in the late ’90s and took a job as a line cook at a local restaurant chain. (He asked me not to disclose the restaurant during our interview.)

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