Suicidal Cow.jpg
One of Thundering Hooves' cattle, eager to turn itself into yuppie chow for sale at Rain Shadow Meats.
This time I'm not writing about an


Melrose Market Is Enough to Fundamentally Alter the Orgasms of Yuppies

Suicidal Cow.jpg
One of Thundering Hooves' cattle, eager to turn itself into yuppie chow for sale at Rain Shadow Meats.
This time I'm not writing about an individual business; I'll be describing an entire BUILDING: the Melrose Market. Melrose Market should probably have been named "Class Warfare Allegory" because it's basically a mini-mall filled with high-end food shops that would make a yuppie soil his pants with semen which isn't just white, but rather a pretentious color like "Cape Cod Porch Railing" or "Maui Sand" or "Securities and Commodities Fraud White."

In this case, I can't really hold it against Melrose Market because EVERY SINGLE SHOP is so fucking good. There's the new Sitka & Spruce and Homegrown Sandwiches, both of which I've praised before, so I won't really talk about them here. And Matt Dillon's new drinking establishment, Bar Ferd'nand, the name of which is apostrophed the way TV writers think alien words are spelled, wasn't open yet. But there were plenty other places to keep us busy.

Marigold and Mint is a vegetable and flower shop. The selection of produce, while limited, is meticulously chosen: Every single plant for sale is an exemplar of its species. Imagine one of those rare orchid shows, but everything is for sale for $3. Besides, the shop itself is so fucking precious it's like an orgy between a gnome, an elf, a fuzzy bunny, a sprite, a lhasa apso, and a leprechaun.

A bunch of red carrots were $3. They were crunchy and earthy and sweet--everything a good carrot should be. Plus they were colored a dark brownish maroon. This is the kind of carrots you get when you water your garden with THE BLOOD OF YOUR ENEMIES.

Garlic scapes were $2.50 for a bunch, wreathed loosely around each other like an electrician's coil of Romex. People often wonder what exactly to do with garlic scapes. Allow me to tell you: Brush them with olive oil, squeeze a bit of lemon juice all over, then GRILL THE EVER-LIVING FUCK OUT OF THEM. The grill must become your Congressional subcommittee; treat the garlic scapes like an oil executive. When they're completely blackened in spots and dark green in other spots, they're done, and they taste like a garlicky artichoke heart.

Fava beans were priced $3 per pound, but we passed on these. That's because fava beans, invented by actor Anthony Hopkins in 1990 just so he'd be able to mention them when he portrayed Dr. Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs, are notoriously difficult to prepare. You must first boil them, then slip each individual bean out of its tough, translucent skin, THEN cook the beans a second time in order to make them tender. It's a good thing Lecter had a bunch of cabana boys cooking his food, because if he had to do everything himself, he'd have made something easier. "I ate some dude's liver in a taco shell with a nice Dr. Pepper." Th-th-th-th-th-th-th-tht!

Calf and Kid is a cheese shop. They feature tons of different cheese, most from countries that were either in cahoots with, or didn't stand up to, the Nazis. Year-old Manchego, sharp and grainy, was $24 a pound. Crottin frais, a soft young goat cheese, was available for $6 for an individual round, maybe an ounce or two of cheese at most. It was creamy and tart and had a velvety rind, kind of like mochi made of cheese. It was also a little funky, and by funky I mean it smelled kind of like cow shit, but in a good way. And no cheese shop worth its rennet would be complete without offering bread or crackers to accompany its wares: Calf and Kid sells Macrina Bakery baguettes for $4.

Finally we came to the Promised Land: Rain Shadow Meats. This butcher shop stocks Thundering Hooves beef. Thundering Hooves is committed to selling meat from animals which have been raised so humanely, they're grateful to be slaughtered so that we may eat them. The cows, in fact, are so eager to die that Thundering Hooves has to keep all ninja swords out of the reach of these cows, or they would butcher themselves way before they're ready to be sold.

Porterhouses are available for $12.99 per pound, a price which rivals that of Safeway's "On its Way by Train to Dauchau" meat or QFC's "African War Zone Survivor" meat, but it's FAR SUPERIOR. It's grassy and maybe a little gamey but that's okay--please try to remember you're eating an animal.

Sausages are $5.99 per pound. Cheap sausage can sometimes taste like a clown's dick, but these were obviously of a very high quality. Mexican chorizo was spicy and tangy, stained a dusky orange-red. Hot Italian sausage wasn't as hot as one might hope, but it did have a nice floral fennel finish. And bratwursts had LOTS of nutmeg. All three sausages were as juicy as a bukkake blooper reel, and had a nice snappy casing. My only problem with any of these sausages was that the bratwurst wasn't creamy enough; the grind of the meat seemed too crumbly for my taste.

With all of these ingredients, we assembled an outrageously awesome feast that would make Steven Raichlen shake his fist to the Heavens and curse God in envy: we made a bed of arugula with grilled garlic scapes, splashed with a broken balsamic vinaigrette, and a mixed grill of bistecca fiorentina and sausages, topped with shaved manchego, plus a side salad of shaved red carrots in olive oil with fleur de sel. Take THAT, people who can't afford food.

Rating: 8.5 yuppie candy stores out of 10

Melrose Market is located at 1501- 1535 Melrose Ave

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