Once a staple enjoyed only by those wielding a bow and arrow, game meats such as venison, pheasant and elk are now mostly raised on farms. We tried these lean meats at various places around town. Here are the ones that made the cut.
Choice cuts: Where to find game meat
University Seafood and Poultry in the U-District offers a nice selection of game meats
Try it out: Our Favorite Restaurant Game Dishes
The only thing possibly more delicious than the velvety wild boar tenderloin at Volterra is the unctuous Gorgonzola sauce spooned over the top ($21). Punctuated by the soft bite of mustard, there’s enough of this glorious, glossy gravy of sorts to coat each bite of boar, and to accommodate a discreet swipe of bread, too.
The venison stew at Spinasse is ripe with heady flavors: Fragrant spice, full-bodied wine and sweet-tart currants combine in this wintry favorite ($18). Simmered slowly, then spooned over drifts of creamy polenta and hearty leaves of kale, this is one cold-weather dish that’ll have you celebrating the rain-streaked November skies.
Meatballs are usually a messy, tomato-saucy thing—unless they are the carefully formed elk patties served at Nettletown. As tasty as their Italian cousins, these Asian-inspired meatballs are accented with lemongrass and served in sandwich form on Le Fournil bread ($8.50).
There are few dishes as iconic in the Seattle area as the rabbit served at Café Juanita. The loin and leg come robed in a crème-frâiche-thickened Arneis sauce studded with wild porcini mushrooms and pancetta ($34). Alongside, a crisp Ligurian chickpea crêpe stuffed with salad greens offers reprieve from the decadence.
A taste of everything
Ed’s Kort Haus is unapologetically divey, and the burger selection—kangaroo, antelope, camel, alligator, llama, caribou and reindeer (prices vary, many in the $9 range)—is hands down the most exotic we’ve seen. Round out this meal with a side of fried taters and an icy-cold Moose Drool beer.
Published November 2010
More articles from our Meat issue
Carnivore's Guide: Bacon!
Carnivore's Guide: A Burger for every budget
Carnivore's Guide: Charcuterie
Carnivore's Guide: Chicken
Carnivore's Guide: Duck, Turkey, and Goose
Carnivore's Guide: Game: Venison, Elk, Wild Boar
Carnivore's Guide: Lamb
Carnivore's Guide: The Meatless Meats
Carnivore's Guide: Offal
Carnivore's Guide: Pork
Carnivore's Guide: Sausages
Carnivore's Guide: The Steakhouses
Carnivore's Guide: The Art of Butchering
Carnivore's Guide: Butcher Shops and Meat Markets
Carnivore's Guide: The Seattle Meat Directory