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MEET THE MEAT, TOULOUSE: RESTAURANT REVIEW

You heard me. Meet the Meat. That's not a translation. That's its name. Meet the Meat.

Regular visitors to my blog are aware that I'm not enamored of French beef. The typical bavette or faux filet that appears on many menus as steak/frites is to this American's taste the equivalent of game meat, not appropriately marbled and a bit too chewy. That's why I was curious about a restaurant called Meet the Meat only a few blocks from our recent rental in Toulouse. I mean, you really have to think that you have meat figured out to put it up on the marquee like that. So we decided to try it.

On the way, we passed one of a chain called L'Entrecote, which translates loosely as Rib Steak. They apparently sell steak by weight and have quite a reputation. The line waiting for the first seating was out the door and down the block. Across the street, at Meet the Meat, we were the first to be seated. No line. No waiting. As our meal progressed, and as Meet the Meat filled up, we looked out at L'Entrecote across the street every now and then. After a couple of hours, a new line formed. More than one seating? That's not often the case in France. But in a chain where volume counts, I suppose that it makes sense. What didn't make sense to me was waiting in a long line on a hot night for chain-cooked beef to be eaten in a hurry to make room for the next wave. And amazingly, as we finished our meal and left Meet the Meat, a third line was forming at L'Entrecote!

I can't speak to L'Entrecote. Maybe, they are that good. But I did enjoy Meet the Meat. Best steak that I've had in France.

We started with a cold beer on a hot day, a very cold beer just the way that I like it. All three of us ordered the entrecote, fancy that. 350 grams (a bit over 12 ounces for the metrically challenged). It came with a salad. We all ordered the salad with duck gizzards. It's France. Get used to it. Good stuff.

The bread was crunchy and grainy.

The girls went to the house red. I continued with beer. The girls had potatoes in cream sauce for their side. I had frites. There were other choices, too. The girls tried herbed butter for their steak. I had a little cup of pepper sauce. All was just right. Cooked to order. Juicy and tender. I repeat. Best steak that I've had in France.

Chocolate cheesecake for dessert. Unnecessary but this is a restaurant review, after all. Adequate but New York has nothing to worry about..

Everyone was given a little kahlua-based digestif at the finish. Nice touch.

The bill came to about 30€ per person. For a decent steak with reasonably interesting trimmings, alcohol included, Meet the Meat's meat was well worth the freight for true carnivores.

Be aware. There are two locations in sight of each other. We ate at the more relaxed Kanteen. HERE'S the website for the more formal restaurant. Read more of my restaurant reviews HERE.






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