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A List of Animals Put Into My Body

from Monday, November10th of the year2008.

As is my wont, I ate many, many times at St John restaurant in London. This particular trip, I ended up focusing my consumption on the smaller sister restaurant, “Bread and Wine,” which is marginally cheaper but no less delicious. I ate: An Entire Pheasant. Ox Liver. Ox Tongue & Ox Cheek Pie (“Tongue in Cheek Pie?”). Many Puddings. Pig Skin. Pig Skin Again. Pork Belly in Various Treatments. Green Sauce. Roast Fig. Eating at this restaurant is one of those experience that reinforces my sense that the way I behave about food ““ which is to say a near religious veneration for ingredients rather than process ““ is “correct.” It’s what they call a “Life-Affirming Expurrience,” so to speak.

I watched the election returns at the home of my friend N””, a conductor, who, along with his lovely girlfriend J””, hosted an election party for approximately ten people in their apartment in Muswell Hill. I came with A”” and D””, both with me on the film, and we soon realized that we were both the token Americans who could explain the electoral college as well as the entertainment. We played Literal Charades; it’s been a long time since I’ve done that. When put on the spot to name “Five Americans English People Have Heard Of” I ended up with, like, Bruce Springsteen and M’Shell Ndegeocello? I have never seen a more satisfying face than when England Girl picked her name out of the hat.


  • Your blog entry title needs to the the title of your next piece…

  • you could write some musique concrete of the chewing noise on different ranges of flesh.

  • what eric and ryan said. how did you do explaining the electoral college???

  • Evviva St John(‘)s! I do not, however, recommend half a pig’s head, nor the grey squirrel.

    Anyway, time was when there was nothing to eat anywhere near the Barbican. Now Clerkenwell and Smithfields teem with cafes and restaurants. If you’re next there in the daytime, I can’t recommend too strongly Cafe Kipferl – real Viennese specialities, excellent lunch (if you can get a table – there are only four) and a charming, quiet host.

  • I’m a fan of St. John too, although I haven’t been in a while, but nose-to-tail has certainly gone mainstream and widespread. In your somewhat native Providence, I ate from the Charcuterie & Offal menu at New Rivers and enjoyed (with some effort) candied cocks comb and duck testicles, euphemistically referred to as duck “fries.” Where do we go from here?

  • I do recommend the pig head, but be prepared for disappointment if you were hoping to eat the brains.

  • I hope it’s not necessary for your groupies to follow you everywhere.

  • Nico, when are you going to write about music?

  • Hello Nico.
    The “for your consideration” ad for ‘The Reader’ was in the LA Times section “The Envelope” today. Your name is there. Good luck! Your fans are proud of you.

    Looking forward to the movie.

  • When you are next in Chicago visit the new venture from the chef and owners of AVEC restaurant. Named the “PUBLICAN” it is entirely devoted to everything that is pig.

  • I’m obsessed with cheese, of the harder Wisconsin varieties, especially Colby, of late.

  • your meat talk is relentless.

    i find it a bit dull.