Why Wild Game Should Matter in the Mainstream

Last Friday, at McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas, while waiting for the weekend shift of working girls to deplane, I picked up a bottle of water and some reading material for my flight home. On the rack, there were the usual periodicals that often make their way into my carry-on: The Atlantic (which my swollen head couldn't fathom at that moment); Surfer (not really the inspiration I needed for a trip home to Nebraska), and Esquire (didn't want to be seen reading a magazine with a picture of Bill Clinton on the cover).

What I did find was a copy of Saveur, a food magazine whose Jan/Feb issue annually lists their Top 100 people, places, and ingredients for the food-obsessed. The Saveur 100 issue serves as great inspiration in the kitchen and fuels many a daydream for food-related road (and plane) trips should I ever win the lottery. It's the kind of best-of list where you'll find meatloaf next to something called mugua ji, or a treatise on the Czech Republic's microbrews matched with Frito Pie.

There is one omission from the 2012 Saveur 100: wild game. I have to say I held out hope that it would pop up as I turned each page, and was a bit surprised when it didn't. If ever there was a year in wild game, this should be it. We're following a stellar 2011 for game eaters--what with Hank Shaw pushing his book Hunter, Gather, Cook on a cross-country tour and Steven Rinella breaking mainstream with his Travel Channel show "The Wild Within"--now moved over to the Sportsman Channel rebranded as "Meat Eater". This year, we're off to a banner start, as you can't escape Georgia Pelligrini as she touts her new book Girl Hunter on just about every talk show and morning program on TV.

How about you: Don't you think it's about time our way of eating makes it into the mainstream?