When you live in the sticks like I do, it can sometimes take a few years for culture from either coast to reach you. That’s my excuse for not knowing about Meatopia, a carnivorous food fest that has apparently been going on in New York City for the past several years. Normally, I would never encourage anyone to visit NYC, especially in early September when hunting seasons are getting underway, but I’m going to say, if you happen to be free on September 8, this might be one event worth attending.
Meatopia is the work of noted food author, host of Ozersky TV and admitted carnist, Josh Ozersky. The event is just what it sounds like: a celebration of all things meat related with nearly 40 teams of chefs and cooks creating a vast array of dishes, all for sampling. This year, the theme is City of Meat, and Ozersky has broken up the Randall’s Island Park site into eight neighborhoods, including one called the Meatopia County Game Reserve. Here, booths will offer New Yorkers a taste of the wild–or as wild as domesticated game can taste. One of these teams will be made up of active Navy SEAL Team Six members grilling up some venison steaks and marinated tenderloin. Other game dishes on the extensive menu include squab rilletes and smoked duck neck gumbo.
In addition to food, there will be plenty of drinks on hand, some desserts and several bands playing. What you might not see a lot of is vegetables, and that’s fine by me. I can appreciate a whole day dedicated to meat and, if I weren’t going to be dove hunting that day, might actually make the trek to the city. If you happen to be free and in the neighborhood of Randall’s Island on September 8, consider a stop at Meatopia and report back here on how everything tasted.