Meatopia, the Woodstock of edible animals, has captured the imagination of Grub Street readers. Suggestions for next year’s theme have flooded in, nearly overwhelming both the Grub Street in-box and our wildest expectations. Send your idea to firstname.lastname@example.org by 6 p.m., and we might see you tomorrow. Among the contenders:
Reader Jeff Elliott further strengthens his shot at an invite with a degree-of-difficulty dinner that might stagger even us.
Meatopia V: Hoof and Mouth
Mustard-Braised Burgundy Snails with Crispy Pigs’ Feet by Brad Thompson
(Brad is a Daniel alum, most recently at Mary Elaine’s at the Phoenician in Arizona, currently scouting locations in NYC)
Braised Turnips Stuffed with Pig's Feet and Fall Mushrooms with White-Truffle-Sauce Lamb Shank by Jean François Bruel of Daniel
(Of course you’d have to wait till the fall for this one)
Buttermilk Fried Frog’s Legs by Paul Nanni of Alchemy
Grilled Fresh Florida Frog Legs by the Pit Barbecue in the Everglades, Florida
(Again, I know they’re from out of town, but the frogs are caught that day from the swamp in back of the restaurant)
Tempura Frog’s Legs Stuffed with Bacon and Foie Gras by Craig Hopson of Picholine
Chicken Feet with Jalapeño from the folks at Oriental Garden
Veal Tongue n’ Cheek with Coco Beans, Pearl Onions, and Parsley by Andy Bennett of the Inn LW12
Ox Tongue Kushiyaki from the folks at Yozakura
Tacos de Lengua by (Too many places to choose from, you pick)
Pickled Calf’s Tongue with Fried Mayonnaise by Wylie Dufresne of wd-50
Beef-Cheek Ravioli with Crushed Squab Liver and Black Truffles by the chef de cuisine at Babbo (Does Batali let the chef de cuisine's name be known?)
The Duck’s Tongue from Super Taste House on Division
(Don’t know who the chef is, I just know they’re damn good)
Jen Runne, perhaps inspired by Geico’s popular caveman commercials, suggests a Cro-Magnon menu:
• Meat from one of the zillions of wooly mammoths in permafrost that they keep digging up in Russia. This would be the central theme item. Yes, they really do sell this for human consumption. It’s not cheap, but it IS available.
• Anything from any truly ancient artisanal breed; i.e. Iron Age cows from England, etc.
• Offal/pluck from large herbivores, served raw or with minimal cooking for safety purposes; i.e. what a hunter-gatherer would eat first before it spoils (bison, elk, moose)
• Fish! Think planked/smoked salmon as well as stews.
• Game birds!
• Lots of “wild” greens, berries, other “noncultivated” edibles.
• Possibly edible grains but no bread, if you really want to go purist.
• Honey in the comb
• Optional and probably illegal: Meat from predators like bear.
Not all the entries had anatomical or historical themes. Reader Michael Mahle sends us the biblically minded idea of re-creating Noah’s Ark.
Meatopia V: If Noah’s Ark Ran Aground
Can you say booze cruise? The Staten Island Ferry would be a sweet ride to host this event … or any number of charter boats.
The menu would feature animals prepared two ways on each plate, i.e. two by two.
All Natural Veal Two Ways with roasted oat risotto, golden beets, preserved Key limes, goan glaze by Floyd Cardoz, Tabla. This would cut back from the original version which Floyd serves veal three ways.
Duck Meatball and Fennel-glazed Duck with spicy chard, Vidalia onion, roasted fig by Andrew Carmellini, A Voce. One signature meatball along with his current, seasonal dish that can transition into other seasons.
Jamison Farm Lamb Two Ways: Roasted Loin, Braised Shoulder and sautéed sweetbreads with artichokes by Daniel Humm, Eleven Madison Park. Fairly simple … this is a dish currently on the menu at EMP
Pork Two Ways: Grilled Double Cut Berkshire Pork Chop with Watermelon Pickle and Crispy Pork Salad by Zak Pelaccio, Five Points (pork chop) and Fatty Crab (“salad”) This too is a multiple play on words. We’ll sample two pork dishes from two of Zak’s restaurants
Pigeon (dove) with toasted barley, sweet potato and apple by Bruce and Eric Bromberg, Blue Ribbon. Though not technically a meat, and not served two ways, this dish would pay tribute to the dove that Noah sent out to find land.
We’ve redacted the last course of Michael’s menu, which included a fish. Remember, entries will be accepted until 6 p.m. today! Get your theme and menu in and you may yet end up at tomorrow’s glorious orgy of animal consumption, courtesy of old Mr. Cutlets.