the taste of lamb
An interesting blog article on the taste of lamb by Frank Bruni:
[T]wo friends and I bite into a cylinder of flesh encrusted with various herbs. One of those friends looks puzzled, concerned.Bruni goes on to talk about how many diners prefer mild tasting meats, such as very young, lean, grass-fed lamb, and filet mignon. These meats have great texture, but not much flavor (which is why filet gets wrapped in bacon). As a result of this trend, lamb in many restaurants tends to be pretty flavorless, and not taste much lamb at all. (The lamb in Greek neighborhoods such as the one I live in tends to be cuts that are very flavorful, however! Especially when grilled on a skewer as souvlaki...)
“This is lamb?” she asks.
“According to the menu,” I answer.
At which point her husband looks even more unsettled.
“I thought it was tuna,” he says. It sounds like a wild, ridiculous comment, but it really isn’t. The pale red flesh has a luscious texture — it’s a marvel of silken pliancy — but little discernible flavor.
Where has all the lamb-i-ness gone?
He concludes by recommending a restaurant in Midtown called Keens Steakhouse, which features a 28-ounce "mutton" (actually 10-month old lamb, which is not quite mutton) chop. Very flavorful, and not at all like tuna. Coincidentally, blogger Amateur Gourmet went to that restaurant recently and has an amusing writeup of his experience.
(Image by Darragh Sherman, Some Rights Reserved)