Sunday, February 14, 2010

The Virgin is tempted by the snake

#1 Never Have I Ever: Eaten an animal with less than two legs

It should only be fitting that I pop my Daily Virgin blog cherry with a hot, thick sausage.

Foreplay: By no means do I have an aversion to meat. Chicken, cows, pigs, and the occasional duck are frequent visitors to my digestive track. I even enjoy less-enthused body parts like cow tripe and chicken feet.

But nothing I do can rival my father's adventurous appetite. The man watched a bat vs. snake throw down in a restaurant in Vietnam and then ATE THEM BOTH. I'm not talking about a peppered fillet served with garlic-sauteed Chanterelle mushrooms. No. The animal handler/cook chopped the heads off of each creature in the middle of the restaurant, drained their warm bloods into respective chilled beer mugs, served their plump hearts on a cocktail dish, and then fired up the grill for some bat and snake barbeque. My third grade self will never be able to unsee my mom's enthusiastic tourist pictures of their unique dining experience.

This minor childhood trauma induced by my father thus inspired me to test my taste buds with rattlesnake. How Freudian of me.

The Down and Dirty: Daywalker, Gemini, and I made our way to downtown L.A.'s arts district to uncover Wurstküche. The loosely Central Europe eatery is best described as a small warehouse turned hipster-influenced gastropub furnished with barn ware. Think: German yokel. The dimly lit room is occupied by three long communal picnic tables and benches, flanked by small tables on the outskirts, and finished with a beer bar on one side. There is a separate, bright room in the back to order food. A delightful fedora-festooned man shuffled us into the surprisingly long line for it being 10:30 PM.

I had already Yelped Wurstküche and had my mouth set for the rattlesnake and rabbit sausage with Belgian fries and a cool pint of Old Rasputin. However, I hadn't anticipated the lack of seating. I felt like a desperate vulture waiting to swoop on an opening at any of the trough-like tables. Annoyingly, our food arrived before my bird of prey instinct could kick in. But once we finally snagged a section of bench, I was not disappointed.

Served in a generic hot dog bun, the rattlesnake and rabbit sausage was zestfully juicy and mildly spicy. I ordered it with yellow bell peppers and grilled jalapenos which added the perfect combination of sweetness and heat. A conservative squirt of ketchup gave a much appreciated tangy kick. The Belgian fries were thick and not as crispy as I had hoped but they were decent when accompanied by any of the four dipping sauces we ordered.

My glass of Old Rasputin was the only letdown. First of all, it had a head that simply would not die. A lack of beer-pouring ability at a German gastropub? Blasphemy I say! Secondly, it was much too dark for my liking. The bitter taste bud receptors on the back of my tongue protested thoroughly until I chased it away with a bite of rattlesnake, a fry drenched in buttermilk ranch, or a swipe of Gemini's framboise. Shouldn't I be washing my meal down with a beer rather than the other way around?

The Afterglow: All in all I'm glad I tried rattlesnake. It was delightfully delicious and it inspires me to be more adventurous with my meals. Doesn't mean I'll be running with the buffaloes to grab a bite, but if someone offers me kangaroo or ostrich I won't grimace... too much. After all, I am my father's daughter.

I've got to hand it to Wurstküche. You've got one solid snake.

1 comment:

  1. I am...the DAYWALKER.
    And I agree- too loud and dark for me to enjoy my sausage. I prefer to enjoy my sausage with the lights on.