Top 5 Foie Gras Dishes to Try in Houston

I enjoy eating foie gras and I'm not going to apologize for it. I don't believe in animal cruelty (and whether force-feeding is actually "cruel", painful or harmful is a matter of debate), but I do believe in an individual's right to choose what he or she consumes.

Furthermore, I would consider myself a hypocrite for castigating foie gras producers when I do not subject other animal flesh purveyors (many of whose factory farm practices I think are far more despicable than force feeding) to the same scrutiny and product abstention.

Well, now that I've surely satisfied any and all political objections to this piece, here are my top 5 foie gras dishes in Houston.

5. Foie Nigiri at Uchi

Though perhaps not the most "traditional" item on the menu, Uchi's foie nigiri, which combines, as you might expect, foie gras, and as you might not expect, quinoa rather than white rice, is pretty damn delicious.

4. Foie Gras with Gingerbread and Caramelized Oatmeal at Roost

Roost has a way with duck liver. The restaurant first garnered heavy praise for its foie gras butter that accompanied the bread service; now, the restaurant offers a more artful but no less appetizing dish of slightly smoky cured foie gras, tart cranberry sauce, gingerbread and a rich caramelized onion oatmeal. It's Thanksgiving meets Christmas meets Meat Butter. I guarantee you won't be disappointed.

3. Foie Gras "Breakfast" at Triniti

Some genius at Triniti appreciates that no meal should be safe from decadent perversion and to demonstrate, tops off the already over-the-top combination of a buttermilk pancake, quail egg and candied bacon with a slab of seared foie gras. To this guy or gal, I say, "Well done, you!" But also, nix the scare quotes. Fuck Wheaties; this is the breakfast of champions.

2. Foie Gras and Scallops at Kata Robata

Liver and mollusks are a winning combination, as aptly demonstrated by Kata Robata's luscious appetizer of Hudson Valley foie gras, seared scallops and teriyaki sauce. The only downside is, the main dishes that follow are likely to fall short, except, perhaps, the lobster macaroni and cheese.

1. B.M.F. Burger at The Burger Guys

Call me crazy, but I don't like bacon on my burgers and I think at one point I explained this preference by saying something like, "I don't like more meat on top of meat." Well, that was a stupid thing to say and clearly not true since a fried egg only improves a burger and foie gras turns it into a heaven-sent sandwich. Case in point: the B.M.F. Burger, which layers Akaushi beef, a generous three ounces of foie gras, onion bacon jam, garlic aioli and a ladle of gastrique sauce. You will have multiple food orgasms despite the fact that you're out $35. What, you have better things to waste your money on? Like Angry Birds shite? Come now.

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Joanna O'Leary