Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Grin and Bear It

I was barely able to contain myself when dinner was served.
What wine do you drink with bear?

This question will have to wait until a night when I am not the designated driver, although I do believe the merlot that was served at dinner tonight would be a passable match.

Who would have thought that after 51 years of going cold turkey on bear, I would eat it twice in one week.

That definitely bears repeating - two plates of bear, a veritable pooh-pooh platter, all in one week. Bear sausage in Trentino and tonight in Gorizia, the provincial capital of the Collio region that has been our home for the past several days and which abuts the Slovenian border, bocconcini of bear (orso).

When I saw it on the menu I had to ask the waitress, "e veramente orso?" It really is bear? Sure as shootin'.

Now we have had some interesting foods in Italy, and we have written about them in prior posts. One of my all time favorites (aside from the rooster testicles) was the donkey we ate in Puglia. Now I can say that I've eaten bear/ass. How about bear with fish? A special recipe called bearing one's sole.

And how is bear? One could say it's grrrrr-eat although Suzy found it only bearable. For me it took a little mental preparation to prepare for it, to bear up, as it were. The taste? A little on the aromatic side, reminscent of liver, but with more gristle (or grizzle?). But it was good enough that by the end of the evening I wasn't Baron von Munchhausen, I was Munchin' on Bear (housin?).

Where does one get bear? I really don't know. While we did visit a supermarket in Gorizia a day earlier, it was a modern, big lots format, without a butcher's counter. Only the bare necessities here.

Regardless of where it came from - the supermarket, a specialty butcher or simply the side of the highway, we left the restaurant completely stuffed, loaded with bear.  'Twas a Kodak (or perhaps Kodiak) moment that will forever be etched in my memory.

Well, that's all for tonight. I'm off to hibernate until tomorrow.

Ci vediamo!
Bill and Suzy

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