Can a restaurant cook refuse to cook red meat to perfection?

“During a lunch at the restaurant, I asked for my red meat to be well done. I sent her back twice because I felt she was still too bleeding. The second time around, the cook did not want to cook it more, considering that it would be a waste. I finally paid for my entire starter-main-dessert formula at 29 euros, although I did not eat this meat. Did the cook have the right to refuse to grant my request? “ asks Carla, Pontault-Combault (Seine-et-Marne).

Response from Murielle Gasnier, lawyer at UFC-What to choose:

“The cooking of a meat generally varies according to the piece, its quality, its thickness, its weight but also according to who is going to eat it. Cooking red meat is indeed a matter of taste: some people like it blue, rare, medium or well done. But it can also be justified for health reasons (example: risk of toxoplasmosis for pregnant women). This is the reason why the cook cannot in principle make himself the judge of your choice, that of having your meat cooked to perfection. This is particularly the case if, at the time of ordering, you were asked about the desired cooking or if your request was granted. Also, faced with the restaurant owner’s refusal to re-cook your meat, you could in turn have refused to pay for this dish, since you did not eat it.

On the other hand, if it is clearly and precisely indicated on the menu of the specific cooking of certain dishes (example: prime rib served blue or cooked at low temperature), or if your choice is a dish that does not the object of any cooking (example: tartare), the establishment would have the possibility of refusing your request, insofar as you were informed beforehand. Sometimes it’s all about arrangement. “