10 Best Bites of Local Charcuterie and Salumi
1) Salt & Time's Coffee Lomo The salumerians first butcher a pig and then shape, season, and slowly cure the cuts into various delicious European-style products. The unusual coffee lomo is pork loin cured with coffee, chile, and cumin.
2) Salt & Time's Porchetta di Testa I'm also smitten by this porchetta: deboned pig head, seasoned, rolled, and poached. (You'd never know. Really.)
3) Stuffed Cajun Meat Market's Andouille Sausage This little Cedar Park joint prepares all things Cajun, from gumbo to boudin balls, but they especially shine in the sausage department. Their andouille is the best I've had outside of Louisiana.
4) Dai Due Wild Boar Chorizo Jesse Griffiths and crew rock it in all kinds of culinary directions, but I can't get enough of his version of Mexican-style bulk chorizo sausage made from wild and domestic pig.
5) Noble Pig Chicken Liver Pâté John Bates and Brandon Martinez are famous for lovingly built sandwiches of handmade everything, but they should be equally known for their stellar pâtés and terrines. Good thing this one comes in a tiny jar; it's irresistible.
6) Noble Pig Duck Pastrami I frequently disagree with Guy Fieri, but we wholly concur that this smoked duck pastrami is one of the best bites in the ATX, on a sandwich or all by itself.
7) Countryside Family Farm's Rabbit Sausage la Mexicaine French transplant Sebastien Bonneu raises and processes small edible farm animals; now he's incorporating his chef roots to transform them into charcuterie. France meets Mexico in this delicious sausage, flavored by cilantro and green salsa.
8) Pâté Letelier's Pâté de Campagne I enjoy all the classic pâtés that Jackie Letelier prepares, but this country-style concoction with pistachios and brandy is particularly fine.
9) Pâté Letelier's Bison, Fig, and Maple Syrup Pâté Socks were knocked off by this unorthodox spread. It's not as sweet as it sounds, just deeply, mysteriously flavorful, with a texture as smooth as an infant's posterior.
10) Aurelia's Chorizo Leslie Horne has been making traditional Spanish-style dry-cured chorizo sausage for many years. Redolent with smoked pimentón (paprika), it's equal to any chorizo imported from España, yet it's made right here in Central Texas.