Thursday, July 17, 2008

Carnivores

I am stuffed with meat!

Er, yes. For the DNB's birthday dinner with his parents, we go to Fogo de Chao, a spectacular Brazilian Steakhouse where they serve unlimited meat. Dapper gentlemen run around the large dining room carrying giant skewers of meat: the "gaucho cowboys," they are called. Each diner is given a two-sided disc. The green side up means "bring me lots and lots of meat," while the red means "OH GOD PLEASE STOP."

We are invited to begin our dining experience at the salad bar. It is full of fresh mozzarella, giant asparagus spears, salmon, and olives. There's a small bowl of Caesar salad, dwarfed by an enormous vat of fresh Parmesan. Greens are not why you come to this restaurant.

Service is of paramount importance to me, and I will patronize again and again those places which do it with excellence. Tonight, a manager checks regularly on our needs, getting fresh plates and clearing used ones. Flip to green and a cowboy is immediately at your side, offering you any one of a dozen kinds of meat.

I am so overwhelmed by all the meat, more than I've eaten in my entire life, it seems, that I fumble as I cut a piece of chicken. The errant slice falls to the floor and rolls under a woman's chair.

"Excuse me miss," remarks the DNB lasciviously to no one in particular. "My meat seems to have accidentally fallen between your legs."

I require two Meat Intermissions before the evening finishes. Sated on wine, polenta, garlic mashed potatoes, and - oh - meat, we stroll towards home.

It is two days before I can poo.

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