A horse is a horse, of course, of course, but don't expect to be eating raw horse in Queens anytime soon. After getting quite a bit of press, and a lot of hate, for its plans to serve horse tartar at MoMA P.S. 1 in Long Island City, the owners of M. Wells Dinette have changed their minds. The LIC successor to the short-lived but much loved Canadian diner in Queens, M. Wells won't be serving chevaline after all. "We took it off because it upset so many people," the owners said in a statement, "which truly surprised us. That is not the effect we look for in our food, so away it goes."

After it was revealed that the restaurant’s chef and co-owner Hugue Dufour was going to be serving up Mr. Ed in his new restaurant the response from animal rights groups was swift: Petitions were signed, protests were promised and the personal safety of Dufour and his wife and partner Sarah Obraitis was threatened. And it just wasn't worth it—especially as the team had yet to finalize how it would be importing the meat from Canada (as there aren't any horse slaughterhouses left in the States).

“I love horse," Dufour told the Times, "but I’m not going to start killing my neighbor because he doesn’t want to eat horse. I can serve other things." And so it goes—a shame because horse meat is actually quite good, as many discovered at this year's Great GoogaMooga when Dufour served up more than 5,000 grilled-cheese sandwiches made with horse-and-pork bologna and foie gras. Anyway, here is the restaurant's full statement on the decision:

Horsemeat is off the menu at the Dinette and it is not likely to return. We took it off because it upset so many people, which truly surprised us. That is not the effect we look for in our food, so away it goes.

We thought about serving it because we like to offer customers new things. We get tired of beef-chicken-pork all the time and we assume diners do, too. Whatever else horses are - draft animals, companions, transport - their meat is also delicious and affordable. In Quebec, where our chef is from, the presence of horse on a menu is unremarkable. Canada is far from the only culture where eating horse does not rise to the level of taboo.

Here in New York the law is ambiguous. We received contradictory opinions from two different government agencies with overlapping jurisdiction. All we can say with certainty is that the law appears to be in flux.

Public opinion here is split, too. Last summer, at a food festival in Brooklyn, we sold over 5,000 horse bologna foie gras grilled cheese sandwiches to many happy New Yorkers. Nevertheless, scandalizing animal lovers is not what we want to be famous for. It was certainly not our intent to insult American culture. However, it must be said, part of living in a city like New York means learning to tolerate different customs. If our critics can forgive us, we invite them in for a drink and a bite of whatever animal they do consume (if any). At any rate, we cry uncle.

M. Wells Dinette