White House Meals For Trump Vs. Obama Show Their Culinary Tastes Are Dramatically Different
From the differences in their general tone and demeanor, to their preferred political policies, Donald Trump and Barack Obama are two dramatically different presidents. In many senses, these differences are totally apparent to the naked eye. But other breakdowns, like the White House meals for Trump vs. Obama, offer a more subtle analysis into how different the two men really are.
According to The New York Times, the White House has undergone significant change in the culinary sphere under Trump's leadership — and in more ways than one. First, there are just the reported eating preferences of the president, himself: while Obama used to enjoy eating out, Trump apparently rarely dines in public D.C. establishments.
Instead, Trump prefers to eat in at the White House, The New York Times further notes, and his meal preferences look extremely different from Obama's. While the White House kitchen cooked up Brussels sprouts and shakshuka (an egg-based Moroccan dish) under Obama's eye, according to the outlet, it now churns out meatloaf and ice cream for the president.
This isn't the first time Trump's tastebuds have drawn attention since he was elected president: he notably ate an over-cooked steak with ketchup for his first meal as president, according to The Washington Post, and has been open about his penchant for fast food in the past, as seen in the video below.
It's not just about the two presidents themselves, though. It also has to do with how the administrations use food to unify communities and bridge the divide with other cultures, as well.
The New York Times reports that while Obama's White House often featured local chefs, the Trump administration no longer prioritizes that effort.
Victor Albisu, a local chef who owns the Poca Madre and Taco Bamba restaurants and who used to cook at the White House for both Obama and George W. Bush, said to The New York Times, “I have not cooked for anybody in the administration. It’s a polarizing time for people, and a table full of food and drinks is the place to put aside those differences. I think this has been a net loss for everyone.”
The new culinary regime under Trump has even begun to spread out to school lunch programs across the country. According to The Washington Post, the U.S. Agriculture Department announced its intentions to roll out school lunch menus packed with more salt and less whole grain on Dec. 8.
Secretary Sonny Perdue said of the proposed change to The Washington Post, “If kids are not eating what is being served, they are not benefiting, and food is being wasted."
This move will render permanent a change that the Trump administration first announced as "temporary" in 2017. The new rules will require that only half of grains in school lunch meals be whole grain, according to The Washington Post, and what was formerly a three-step sodium reduction plan (put in place by Obama) will, for the time being, be a one-step sodium reduction program.
As for Trump, a Bloomberg report in March claimed that he had radically changed his diet after his presidential physical last January. It's unclear if he's still maintaining this presidential diet, or if it ever took place to begin with.