California menu-labeling laws were enacted last year but are being phased in. For now, restaurant chains with 20 or more units can choose between printing calorie counts next to items on their printed menus or menu boards and providing more detailed nutritional information -- such as calories, saturated fat, carbohydrates and sodium -- on brochures either on the table or near the cash register.
Starting in 2011, chain restaurants will have to print calorie information on their menus. So eventually, California Pizza Kitchen will go back to the menu style it just dropped.
Rules similar to what California will have in 2011 are in several of the health reform bills circulating in Congress and have the support of both the restaurant trade group and consumer organizations. The federal rules would standardize the way in which chain restaurants report the information nationwide.