Would You Like Fries With Your Lion Burger?

By now, you’ve probably heard about the small Mesa, Arizona, restaurant that caused an up-roar this week by making a limited-time addition to its menu — Lion Burgers. If you hadn’t heard about it, well now you have. But putting any judgment aside for the moment, one has to ask — Where in the world do you get lion meat from?

According to the restaurant’s owner — who planned the exotics eats as part of a menu to promote the World Cup in South Africa — he ordered around 10 pounds of lion meat through a Phoenix-based distributor who told the restaurateur it came from a free-range farm in Illinois.

Not exactly.

The box the meat came delivered in was labeled “Czimer’s Game & Sea Foods,” which is located outside Chicago in Homer Glen, IL. And it’s not exactly a free-range farm where lions roam the plains. It’s a butcher shop that offers a whole host of uncommon animal meats, including llama and camel.

When CNN asked Mr. Czimer to reveal the origin of the lion meat, he would only say that he gets it from another man who owns an animal-skinning business:

This man buys and sells animals for the skin, and when I need something and he has ability to get it, I will bargain for the meat. It’s a byproduct.

I wouldn’t have any idea [where he gets the lions]… He has his sources, and I do not infringe on his business, just as he does not infringe on mine.

Do you question where chickens come from when you go to Brown’s Chicken or Boston Market?

On a side note, Czimer was actually busted in 2003 for selling meat from protected animals, including — no lie — a “liger.”

Hunting the lion burger butcher [CNN]