Zombie Apocalypse: The Gourmet Dead

[E]veryone knows the basic facts about zombies: first comes infection, and next, a strong desire to consume the flesh of the living. Zombies are hideous creatures with decaying bodies, which annoyingly grunt and stagger across cities like a drunken frat boy after one too many litres of beer. Zombies are the pathetic undead monsters of horror.

However, being a zombie may be better than you thought. There is plenty of meat in this world, and much of it does not have to come from humans. Like a vegetarian zombie, or one of those human vegetarians that “only eat fish,” (Yeah, yeah, you’re definitely still a vegetarian. Not.) I would personally feed on gourmet zombie food fit for food lover that I am.

Hypothetically, if I had to feed on fresh bloody meat, I would definitely stray away from that of the human variety. Could you imagine biting into a juicy chunk of arm skin only to taste the lingering essence of Vanilla Bliss Shimmer Body Lotion? No thank you.

I would go somewhere like Toronto’s “Black Hoof,” where they take meat to the next level. Here are my personal recommendations from Black Hoof, but beware, they are for the more experienced palettes only.

The first thing I tasted was their roasted bone marrow, served with chimichurri, a sauce made from parsley, garlic, and oregano, and bread with sea salt. Placing a little chimichurri and marrow on the bread, the sensation of creaminess and saltiness played around in my mouth. For those who have never tried bone marrow, it is very soft, rich, and slightly oily. Adding the sea salt made the dish a little too salty, but overall it was tasty and flavourful.

Next, I had the spicy horse tartare. Tartare meaning raw meat. Yes, I understand this may sound absolutely disgusting to some, but many fine dining places offer small amounts of raw meat on their menu. Perhaps on its own would have been a little hard to swallow, but mixed with the dill, lemon mayo and hickory-sticks, it was surprisingly good and had the texture of raw tuna. However, at first, the overwhelming taste of horse and hay was a little bit off-putting.

Lastly, was the tongue on brioche, and was prepared like a Montreal smoked meat sandwich. It came with amazing homemade pickled celery, and the texture was much softer than normal beef. With thin slices of the tongue, it really did not look like anything but regular meat. It was a delicious sandwich that was a fresh take on a classic.

Although disappointed I did not get to try their fois gras (liver) with nutella, the meal was exactly the high standard that was expected. The Black Hoof, although started only in 2008, has had a major cult following that attracts many Torontonians for its innovative take on uncommon food.

With the Toronto Zombie Walk that happened this weekend, I wonder where many of the undead went for dinner. All I can say is, I’m quite sure what I had was a lot better than brains.

What I wish I had the guts to try at Black Hoof:
1) Blood Custard
2) Liver and Onions
3) Smoked Sweetbreads (Thymus Gland)