S&M is all about experimentationEat This!, Section 4A Thursday, February 5th, 2015
That’s what Justin Frank, director of operations for Sausage and Meat (S&M), told me. As expected, the menu focuses on house made sausages and exotic meats, charcuterie and bacon. But the menu “can change at any time” depending on what’s in season, and what Chef Mark Younggren has been concocting in the kitchen.
I visited S&M during happy hour. The medium-sized space has a friendly, unpretentious quasi-industrial vibe. Warm colored woods balance the glass and stainless steel appliances. Colorful mosaic tiles add a playful touch to the poured concrete bar. Light streams in through large roll-up windows. Plenty of seating, indoors or out.
Did I mention bacon? You’re given a free slice of bacon just because it’s happy hour. You get another free slice when you use the “safe word”. Bacon choices are sweet, like white chocolate and cashew, or savory. I chose the Honey Sriracha and Garlic Rosemary Parmesan varieties. The thick slices have a wonderful pliant consistency, almost like a taffy. The hickory flavor pairs well with the sticky honey and a hint of the chile’s fire. Similarly, the garlic, rosemary and cheese work in unison, but do not overpower the delicate smokiness.
Need more delicious bacon? Try the Bacon Fat Deviled Eggs. Cooked egg yolks are whipped with bacon drippings, mayonnaise and mustard into velvety mounds of yumminess, then topped with minced chives, smoked paprika, and, you guessed it, sweet bacon crumbles. A wasabi aioli drizzle adds a bit of heat for a complete flavor profile.
S&M offers an extensive list of sausages. From standard fare, such as frankfurters and Cajun chicken, to exotic choices such as kangaroo Cajun hotlinks and alligator antelope pork Andouille. I chose the whiskey fennel and bison chipotle for my sausage board. Both selections are a medium-coarse sausage packed with smokey flavor and perfectly grilled. House made pickled onions, sauerkraut and dills compliment the mild meats, and the whole grain whiskey mustard adds a sweet note.
I sampled the Pork Wings, a small pork shank, fried, then glazed with a choice of sauces. I opted for the root beer balsamic reduction. The meat was fall-off-the-bone tender and flavorful. For my taste however, the sweetness of the sauce could have used an acidic or sour counterpoint for balance and nuance.
Did I mention exotic meat? The Beaver Taco was my next selection. Yes, beaver. As in a large semi-aquatic rodent. The meat has a consistency of ground beef but a very unique flavor. Chef Mark compared the taste to a “gamier version of lingua (cow tongue).” I said the meat had a “woodsy” flavor. “You are what you eat,” he replied with a smile. The small taco is served with crumbles of queso fresco, cilantro leaves, grilled lime wedge and house made salsa roja.
Finally, I snagged a piece of caramel bacon for dessert. Chewy buttery caramel with crunchy salty bits of bacon. Talk about a Scooby snack!
See something you like? You can buy sausages and sauces to go, perfect for your next barbecue. Owner Scott Slater invites you to try their variety of small, medium and large plates, too. Sausage and Meat (4130 Park Blvd.) is open Sun – Thurs: 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., and until 11 p.m. on Fri and Sat. Happy Hour, 3-6 Mon-Fri, is good for $2 off any cocktail, $2 franks and free bacon. Follow S&M on social media for the “safe word”. Eat this, hungry readers. You’ll be glad you did. sausageandmeat.com
Short URL: http://lgbtweekly.com/?p=56061