Move over, Caswell: Feast makes an outrageous TV debut
For Houston foodies and Feast fans (the two are practically synonymous), this is a bit of a conundrum.
Feast, the tiny restaurant with huge talent and ambition, deserves every platform it can get — the better to introduce more people to its wonderful, locally-sourced, European rustic cuisine. So when The Food Network comes calling to feature Feast and its trio of proprietors, Richard Knight and James and Meagan Silk, we're excited — just less so upon learning the show is called Outrageous Food.
On Outrageous Food, host Tom Pizzica, known for being the big, funny runner-up on season six of The Next Food Network Star, is out to discover "the most jaw-dropping, eye-popping, occasionally heart-stopping foods in the country.... From the absurdly spicy ... to the ridiculously pricey ... and the blatantly bizarre."
Does this describe Feast? We're not going to deny they serve some animal cuts you don't find every day — offal, heart, snout, etc. But one doesn't have to be an adventurous eater to find something satisfying here. Braised chicken, pan-fried duck breast, bouillabaisse, scallops and more traditional favorites populate the menu, all served with an equal level of tasty precision.
Its a little weird to see the amazing talents of Knight and Silk displayed between a seven-pound deli sandwich and jumbo-sized sundaes. But we'll acknowledge that the dishes they serve up for Pizzica qualify as outrageous — and he seems sufficiently impressed by their culinary creativity.
As Pizzica described one to CNN's Eatocracy,
These two chaps from England take an entire pig face — I’m talking straight off the skull, crazy horror movie mask pig face — and roll the tongue up inside. They truss it and then cut off the snout (don’t worry, they use that in another dish, nothing goes to waste). The whole thing is brined for three days, then braised for a few hours. After it has cooled for 24 hours, they take thin slices of it and fry them on a flat-top griddle. When you eat it, the whole thing melts in your mouth and is unbelievably delicious. It's like the most outrageous bacon you've ever had. The recipe alone is outrageous, and for a pork lover like myself, I’m kind of jealous I never thought of it!
"We're very excited, it's our first go on a TV show and Tom, the host, was very cool — we had a good rapport. It's a bit of a strange one because James and I always do everything together, so we had to give them some suggestions and they ended up having us make them two," Knight says.
In addition to the bath chaps, the Feast men will also be serving Pizzica a pig's ear cake, and Knight says they plans to have both on the menu by Saturday night for any curious viewers.
When it comes down to it, we are truly excited to see these talented Houston restaurateurs getting some national attention. You can catch the premiere of Feast on Outrageous Food on Friday at 9 p.m.
What do you think, CultureMappers? Will you be ordering the bath chaps or pig's ear on your next trip to Feast?