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Topics: Ass, Restaurants, Pig

Thursday, 3 December 2009

image for Mudguard for Pig's Arsehole Makes Debut on Kuleto's Menu
Pigs will fly before I ever eat at Kuleto's restaurant again.

SAN FRANCISCO, California - When a pig farmer turned chef named Bob Kuleto broke the mold, setting slow braised pig tails in a gelatin mold, he had hoped to delight San Francisco food patrons eager for something new with his latest twist on classic Tuscan salami.

Instead, the critically acclaimed Bob's Villa restaurant has now called into question its three-star status with the debut of what may very well be the two worst examples of house cured salumi Toscani in the history of Northern Italian cuisine - Coppa di Coda, and Bresaola di Maiale Marrone.

A twist on Coppa di Testa, or Italian head cheese, Bob Kuleto's Coppa di Coda is a "tail cheese" made of cooked pieces of pork tail braised with parsley, nutmeg, carrot, and spices to make a rich stock, all of which is then set in a firm gelatin mold.

Two nights ago, I had the displeasure of experiencing this culinary concoction for the first time, with trepidation, then incredulity - fecal matter is an acquired taste. I spit the remains in a napkin that my waiter thoughtfully replaced shortly after I excused myself to vomit.

Upon returning, I tried to flush away the taste with a 2003 Pinot Noir from California's Russian River Valley. Its raspy aromas of rhubarb, tomato leaf and shoe polish barely stood up to the tail cheese's fecal aroma, and its earthy flavors of mixed berries and pencil lead were ultimately no match for the chef's special.

His Bresaola di Maiale Marrone, or air-dried, salted pork "browneye," fared little better. In fact, if anything tastes more like a pig's arse than his arsehole mudguard, it is his actual arsehole. Bob gave it a squirt of his own special aioli (sort of like an Italian mayonnaise), which only made it worse.

To flush the taste of this one away, I tried a 2004 Super Tuscan from San Rafael. Its pungent, earthy aromas reminiscent of barnyards and biscuits, and its rich, ripe layers of molten chocolate and toadstool flavors finally did the trick - but only after four glasses.

In contrast, a mere pint of Pepto-Dismol helped me through the next couple of days, which were punctuated by pungent, earthy aromas, molten chocolate and ripe air biscuits on my own stool, which Italians often refer to as cacarella.

These dishes are a tribute to Chef Kuleto's uncanny ability to use, if not abuse, every last part of a pig, right down to its arsehole, while still remaining faithful to Tuscan culinary traditions. Nevertheless, they still tasted like shite.

Bob's Villa is an affront to fine Italian dining from San Francisco to Florence. This restaurant seems to exist solely to promote class privilege, cultural incest, and occasional » bestiality «.

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