How to devour the sausage plate.
I love sausage.
Sausage can be very special or very disgusting. Quality sausage is an amazing thing; a delicious cylinder of meat, fat and spice. There is an art and a craft to its preparation, mixing and fermentation. Whether the link in question is a German Liverwurst or a Cajun Boudain, an honest-to-goodness sausage is a joy for the palate.
Behold, the Brewer’s Sausage Plate; a dish found at McGuire’s Irish Pub in Pensacola.
Andouille, kielbasa and more links whose name and origin I cannot place with certainty.
It is a thing of beauty. But one must not approach it lightly.
I will assume that anyone who orders this dish is an appreciator of meat. Thusly, the diner must pace his eating of the meal accordingly.
A food challenge like this necessitates preparation to be enjoyed to its fullest potential. I recommend a twenty-four hour fast. Avoid food for a full day. Two hours prior to the meal, engage in a heavy workout. Through such methods, your stomach will be empty, your metabolism will be humming, and you will be able to fully enjoy the gastronomic wonderland that is a plate of sausages.
Your sausages will arrive upon a bed of warm sauerkraut, adjacent to warm potato salad, braised slices of apple and a selection of mustards. Do not allow such culinary accoutrements to distract you–they are cosmetic; this meal is meat-centric.
The order in which you eat your links matters very little, but stay focused. You stand no chance of finishing this meal unless you maintain a narrow field of vision.
The price of this meal includes a craft beer made on-site at McGuire’s. There is the option to have a root beer instead, also made on-site. If you are serious about sausage, neither option is optimal. A mug of fluid carbohydrates will only make you feel full faster. But, if you’ve a throat on ye and must raise a mug before the night’s end, do yourself a favor and refrain from gulping.
Ignore the sauerkraut. It’s tasty, but at the end of the day, it’s nothing but shredded cabbage and a waste of stomach. Save your probiotics for another day, you can pick up a jar of quality sauerkraut at Publix or Kroger’s.
Ordinarily, I would advocate skipping the potato salad entirely, because most potato salad is truthfully a waste of calories. But much like the potato salad at another longstanding Pensacola favorite, Hub Stacey’s, this is special. McGuire’s potato salad is a warm, sweet/sour German potato salad. You will taste vinegar and honey, not Hellman’s mayonnaise. I recommend a bite or two between links. But, whatever you do, don’t eat it all at once. You don’t want the starch load to hit bottom and fill you up before you’ve done justice to the meat.
With guidelines firmly in place for the consumption of the meal, I invite you to consider the meat course. Indulge in your sausages. Slice them with the provided steak knife and spear them with your fork. Hold them up to the light and consider the interplay of fat and protein inside the casing. Before each bite, touch your forkful of deliciousness with a bit of mustard. The mustards are a matter of personal preference. You will meet a sweet yellow, a savory brown and a wasabi-tinged spicy blend. I am partial to the brown mustard for general-purpose use, but the various flavors of the different links will be complimented differently by the various sweet and spicy options.
Make this your meal of the day. Go into McGuire’s empty, leave full, and do not sully the experience by any other meal for the rest of the day.
Through careful forethought and execution, your sausage experience can be full, complete and memorable.
This has been a tongue-in-cheek post.