Is Bunny the New Bird in NYC?

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Rabbit ragu served with pappardelle at French newcomer Le Midi


Not to be outdone, area Sichuan restaurants have hunted down the hopper. Lan Sheng tenders a rabbit with pickled chiles in Midtown on 39th Street - a favorite lunchtime haunt of office workers - while Lower East Side Fujianese spots have long braised every bunny they can find in red-wine lees. In this vein, the version of lichee rabbit at Food World is more than worth chasing into the hutch.

Just last night, rabbit meatballs were spotted as a special at Monument Lane, where the menu also lists braised rabbit with herbed spaetzle and hedgehog mushrooms.

But by far the most rabbit intensive menu so far has occurred recently at Swine, a West Village boite that took over the old Rubyfruit space. You can begin with a rabbit-and-mushroom terrine and a handful of rabbit croquettes, then proceed to the wonderful bacon-braised rabbit leg, served on a bed of pillowy polenta.

Really, the question is no longer where can you find rabbit, but, if a restaurant doesn't have hare, why not?


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Rabbit croquettes at Swine


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9 comments
wanchai
wanchai

Rabbit and hare are different animals, they don't taste the same at all...


wanchai
wanchai

Rabbit and hare are different animals, they don't taste the same at all...


suparabbit
suparabbit

@robertsietsema "what's up doc?"

hopperhome
hopperhome

Since when do we eat animals considered pets in the US? There are 2 to 4 million rabbits kept as pets in the US. House rabbits are common pets in urban areas in homes just like a cat or dog. They are the third most popular mammalian pet in the US, UK and Canada. Domesticated rabbits can be litter box trained, learn their names, learn tricks, are affectionate, & bond for life with people. Of course, you can eat them. People will eat anything. Less than 85% of meat rabbit operations are inspected in this country. Rabbits can have  diseases/parasites like cats or dogs. In some countries dogs & cats are regularly consumed. But as pet ownership of these animals is on the rise so is the opposition to eating them. Rabbits are established as pets in the US so why do we objectify them as food & not dogs or cats. If tradition is the excuse, then we should applaud some cultures for poaching puppies & boiling cats. But we don't. The same breeds who are cooked make the best pets like Dutch, New Zealands, Satins, Californians, etc. There is no difference between a "meat" rabbit and a pet rabbit. Rabbits from meat operations are now living as pets. Recently, a gorilla from a zoo in Erie PA, Samantha, was awarded a certificate as a compassionate pet owner of a rabbit. (The Dutch rabbit lives with the Gorilla as a companion.) Even a gorilla knows that rabbits are best suited as friends not food. What does that make us?

swayneharris
swayneharris

@VoiceStreet Rabbit tastes like poultry to me...am I the only one who feels that way?What type of meat is rabbit considered?Is it red meat?

yumandmore
yumandmore

@ForkintheRoadVV don't understand why? occaisionally as a special but everywhere? why the trend? just to be trendy? #rabbit

VoiceStreet
VoiceStreet

@swayneharris That is a VERY good question - @robertsietsema @tejalrao, do you know if rabbit is considered white or red meat?

swayneharris
swayneharris

@VoiceStreet @robertsietsema @tejalrao Then another site considers it white meat like poultry.Does anyone have a definitive answer?

swayneharris
swayneharris

@VoiceStreet @robertsietsema @tejalrao I looked it up,it is considered red meat,the leanness of rabbit simply makes it seem like white meat.

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