Steve's Weird Food for Greece: Snails

Friday, November 20, 2009

Again the LP is to blame, though I think I got off easy in the end. My initial inquiries about weird food were directed at the staff of the lovely hostel in Athens (mostly half-and-half Greek/Aussie types fluent in both languages and cultures) and had me leaning towards a dish comprised of spit-roasted liver wrapped in intestines. So when I saw the LP entry for the Taverna Karavolos, and it turned out to be on the way from my hotel to the main drag on the little island of Poros, it seemed like fate. (Yes, I did finally make it to an island. More on that in another post.)

Taverna Karavolos, with friendly resident dog.

I abandoned the LP Greece when I left the country so I can’t give you the exact details of the entry, but suffice it to say that snails were the specialty of the place, and I recall that the house-made wine was described as “persuasive”. I think it could more accurately be describes as “rubbing alcohol”, but that didn’t stop me from drinking it. Anyways, the guy running the place was very friendly, and spoke English, and explained that the snails I ordered were small ones served in the shell, not like the French way. He even instructed me on how to eat them: “Suck them out of the shell from this end, not from the side. Use a toothpick if they get stuck. And sop up the sauce with the bread”.

The snails, the sauce, the wine

Once again, I was lucky. The snails didn’t really taste like much – a little bit rubbery, but otherwise totally inoffensive. And the sauce was a dark tomato-y concoction with big pieces of onion and it sopped up very nicely. And I’ve already mentioned the wine…

Me, demonstrating proper snail-sucking technique

Frankly, the weirdest part of the whole experience was going for a very early run the next morning and finding the roads dotted with snails that looked suspiciously like the ones that had been on my plate the night before. Luckily I didn't run into the proprietor with a sack over his shoulder.

So chalk up another weird food. I think I’ve been doing pretty well with this challenge, and I have to admit that it’s been fun to seek out the unusual and force myself to give it a shot. Thanks Steve, for everything except the pig ears

1 Comment:

Steve said...

No problem... :)

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