The other night we went out to eat at a carnivorous-centric restaurant.
Though there seems to be one of these restaurants popping up on every corner in our neighborhood (eyes roll), this one is particularly close to my heart. It’s true their food is a-fing-mazing, but that’s not the reason for my passion.
What is particularly interesting to me is the name. The restaurant, as mentioned, is meat focused with a full view curing room and tip to tail philosophy. And is named after George Orwell’s revolution inciting pig in Animal Farm.
The irony cannot be missed.
Eh, maybe it can, but not by me.
As I mentioned, these types of restaurants are all over the urban core of Denver. Part of the whole movement back towards artisan living, with best examples found in cities like Portland, Seattle, and Denver where hipsters with too much money wander around gentrifying the city while loudly staking claim on better ways to live.
Not saying I don’t benefit. My property value goes up, though new neighbors tend to be individuals I would rather not deal with, and we have some pretty good restaurant options.
Restaurant options being by far the best of the whole scenario.
As we were sitting at the restaurant the other night, amusing ourselves at the pretentiousness of the staff, our waitress asked how we enjoyed the charcuterie board. Definitely one of the best we’ve had, and she then hesitantly explained where each piece was located on the animal.
We were amused at her concern. Vivian already knows hamburger comes from a cow, just as she has gotten eggs from chickens and then cooked them. No break in the chain in our household.
Though totally get her concern. Most people are not as familiar with their food and would rather just eat than know. We eased her by explaining our experience with a pig’s head. Well, not mine, though I was witness.
A friend and her new husband had just returned from their honeymoon trip, and we decided to take them out to a new restaurant we had discovered maybe two months earlier.
Keep in mind when I say new, I mean new to us. I’m pretty sure the restaurant had been there for several years before, but I hadn’t been in that part of the city since it was warehouses and a coffee shop that had only coffee and books. That’s right, no food, no wine, no beer, just coffee and books.
The coffee shop tried adding a wine bar as the area improved, and sadly went out of business about two years ago. Rent was too high. Different demographics.
This restaurant, similar to Old Major, sourced full animals and changed the menu based on what part was being butchered at that time. Lucky us, we were there on the night they reached the head.
Now my friend was newly pregnant and still queasy from the blessing that is hormonal shifts and morning sickness of early pregnancy. Or in her case, all pregnancy. Though I believe this has gotten better with each subsequent child.
Side note, pregnancy suited me incredibly well. I was sick a total of two times and felt pretty amazing even in my brain. Motherhood is an entirely different story. Ten months versus a lifetime? I will not be having another child, stop asking.
That night was a decent night for her stomach, thankfully, because the two men of the table decided to share half a pig’s head.
She and I both opted for the vegetarian platter. Ya, I get it. But I’m not a super carnivore and sometimes meat is just not for me. And for her, sometimes meat is not best for stomachs not inclined to keep anything down. Or at least, it sucks on it’s way back up so best not to chance it.
So instead of eating we had entertainment as two men sat across from each other and discussed which parts each was going to eat. All in all, it wasn’t bad. Until they reached the eyeball.
I’m pretty adventurous when it comes to food. I will try everything at least once, especially when traveling. Almost everything. After watching them try to cut out the eyeball, slice the eyeball, and then decide who was going to have the cornea… ya, I’m good. Eyeball is not something I need to try.
Dialogue on our side of the table while this was going on? Reminded us of biology class in high school. Fetal pigs and eyeballs. Apparently separating ourselves into some form of intellectual query rather than having any sense of empathy for the animal. Or feeling the gag reflex thinking about the texture touching their tongues.
Did you know your cornea has the same texture as a wax ball?
Ya, I know. Probably a useless fact. I could have gone a lifetime not seeing a half chewed cornea come back out on the plate.
And of course, at the same time the pig was being eaten we were being sent text memes of a dead raccoon on the side of the road with a get well balloon tied to it. All in all, an entirely barbaric evening surrounded by decadence of a pricey restaurant in downtown Denver.
We still see those friends from time to time, mostly holidays and birthday parties. They have three sons now, and of course Vivian is front and center of my life. Restaurants of most sorts, particularly overpriced tip to tail restaurants, are few and far between.
Except when I scrounge enough from the change jar or short us on groceries to visit my favorite restaurant of irony.