CHICAGO — Hoping to avoid a trans-Atlantic legal battle, Publican Quality Meats is holding a contest to rename one of its sausages.
Last week, the West Loop restaurant at 825 W. Fulton Market received a letter from the French consulate demanding that it stop offering its entirely Chicago-made "Morteau" sausage from the menu.
"If we didn't stop, we were told there could be legal action taken," said manager Janelle Weber.
The European Union protects the names of certain foods associated with parts of the continent. For example, if you make Parmigiano-Reggiano-style cheese but it wasn't made in a certain part of Italy, don't be surprised if lawyers come after you.
Morteau takes its name from a smoked pork sausage originating from eastern France.
Winners of Publican Quality Meats' Facebook contest will be awarded one of each of the restaurant's 14 types of sausages for sale in its space across from the Publican restaurant.
The winner will be revealed on July 4.
On its Facebook page, fans of the deli — a collaboration of well-known restaurateurs Paul Kahan, Donnie Madia, Terry Alexander and Eduard Seitan — already have put forth their ideas.
"Windy City Wurst," "Stanley Cup Sausage," and "I got your sausage right here," were some of the suggestions posted to the page this week.