Australian restaurant removes 'Schindler's List fries' from menu

Restaurant in Australia comes under fire after outraged Jewish customer notices Schindler's List-themed waffle fries on the menu.

Tags: Australia
Ben Ariel ,

Part of Schindler's List
Part of Schindler's List

A restaurant in Australia has come under fire after an outraged Jewish customer noticed $15 Schindler's List-themed waffle fries on the menu, The Daily Mail reported on Monday.

The Melbourne woman, who was only identified as Lisa, was left disturbed after she spotted the Holocaust reference on the menu while visiting the restaurant, The Arc at Nobbys, on Friday.

“My boyfriend and I went to dine there on Friday night, February 1, and almost immediately I noticed the 'Schindler's List' waffle fries for 15 dollars,” she said.

“I cannot express how disturbed, uncomfortable and in plain shock we were both in after reading the menu,” added Lisa.

The Schindler's List waffle fries nachos are among a number of other items on the menu named after blockbuster movies including Pulp Fiction, Terminator and Godfather, according to The Daily Mail.

Lisa made her complaint known and spoke with the manager of the establishment who apologized, according to the report.

“I asked to speak with the manager and explained to her how inappropriate it is to name a dish after the film,” Lisa said.

“The manager was apologetic after I had explained to her why the name of the dish is extremely offensive, and she assured me that it would be changed to something else.”

Schindler's List is a 1993 movie, directed and co-produced by Steven Spielberg, set in German occupied Poland during World War II. The movie tells the story of businessman Oskar Schindler who turned his factory into a refuge for persecuted Jewish people during the Holocaust.

Spielberg has said that, out of all his celebrated films, he is most proud of “Schindler’s List” which won an Oscar.

“I have never felt, since ‘Schindler’s List,’ the kind of pride and satisfaction and sense of real, meaningful accomplishment — I haven’t felt that in any film post-‘Schindler’s List,’” Spielberg said last year.

Lisa also lodged a complaint to the Anti-Defamation Commission, Australia's leading civil rights organization, and the item was removed from the restaurant’s menu.

When contacted by Daily Mail Australia, the restaurant said it was aware of the complaint but stressed they did not intend to cause harm.

“At the time the venue owner advised the customer that her comments would be taken on board and reviewed immediately,” The Arc at Nobbys said.

After a review over the weekend, the restaurant made the call to take the name off the menu and to re-print new menus.

“We would like to add at no time did we look to offend anyone and the intent of the name on the menu may have been taken out of context,” The Arc at Nobbys said, explaining that “Fries are popular menu item so we named our four fries after four movies that are popular classics.”

The Chairman of the Anti-Defamation Commission, Dr. Dvir Abramovich, said the incident was an example of cheapening of the Holocaust for advertising and marketing purposes.

“This hurtful and insensitive incident would leave most gasping, and is the latest example of a trend that only seems to be getting worse as we move further in time and people forget what actually happened in World War II,” he said in a statement quoted by the Daily Mail.

“It simply defies belief that anyone thought this was an appropriate marketing ploy or a funny gimmick to describe food. I should not have to say this, but there can never be any justifiable purpose for making light of the extermination of six million Jews and millions of others,” added Abramovich.