Monday, May 21, 2012

Googa Mooga: I Came, I Saw....I Ate Horse.

Yes, ladies and gentlemen...I ate horse this weekend.

But that's getting ahead of myself.

This past weekend was Prospect Park's Great Googa Mooga Festival . Organized by the same folks who put on Outside Lands and Bonnaroo, Googa was billed as "an amusement park of food and drink" featuring food loves such as Big Gay Ice Cream, Do or Dine, Calexico, Luke's Lobster and others. There was music too...but we're just gonna talk about the food because that's the exciting part!

Most of the restaurants and food vendors at the festival, I enjoy on a pretty regular basis, so I tried to limit my consumption to foods and restaurants I'd never tried before.

Since I pretty much fail at life, of course I would forget to bring more batteries for my camera....but I did manage to squeeze off some shots of the foods I really liked.

1. M.Wells - (Horse) Bologna and Foie Gras Grilled Cheese

So nice, I had to take the picture twice. Please note that in their sign, they don't mention the horse part. That's a pretty smart idea, because I'm not sure how many people would have tried it if it was up there.

I trust anything M.Wells does, so I didn't hesitate to try it. I'd only gotten to go to its Long Island City location once before it closed its doors, but it was an unforgettable experience. So was this sandwich. 

The bread was hearty, perfectly crisp and buttery. The bologna and foie worked together in gamey/salty/creamy harmony; the cheese was only there to glue the two together. Mustard kept everything in check with a vinegary tang to cut through all the fat. I was pretty sad when I finished it, and I'm sure this was the best and most original thing I had all day. It was as adventurous as a comfort food could become, using two unorthodox meat products to transcend a dish from simple to sublime. 

2. Landhaus - BLT by Landhaus

Landhaus's specialty is their thick cut grilled bacon which they serve maple cured and spiced on a stick, and in a BLT with lettuce, tomato, and herb mayo. They were serving the latter at Googa. 

I know the dude who runs Landhaus because he works in the communal kitchen that my bakery operates out of, but I've never once tried any of his pork based delights. I knew I had to remedy that. 

Cool, crispy lettuce layered with the juiciest tomato I've ever eaten, a huge slab of delicious bacon, all lightly dressed with creamy herbed mayonnaise. The roll itself was perfect, soft and pillowy inside, and chewy outside. It was served with potato chips and pickled veggies, but I don't remember eating those because the sandwich was so good. 

3. Cookin' With Coolio - Soul Rolls

I'm a huge fan of Coolio's web show, Cookin' With Coolio, and when I first saw the list of restaurant/food vendors appearing at Googa, and saw his name...I knew damn well I was gonna hightail it over to his booth. If you have never seen an episode of his show, please, make your way over to the link above. Not only are the episodes funny, but he also makes some tasty looking dishes. Plus, he portions his seasonings into dime bags. DIME BAGS, PEOPLE. 

Coolio (who was actually AT Googa, but I missed him) offered up his Soul Rolls: fried spring rolls stuffed with a mix of seasoned turkey and beef, cheese, and shredded cabbage. They came with either a peach or pineapple BBQ sauce. I requested both because I'm greedy. 

These were damn good. Savory, cheesy, crunchy, and made even better with the fruity BBQ sauces. If egg rolls were more like these, I'd be more inclined to eat them. Gotta give you some props, Coolio!

I also had a strawberry rhubarb ice pop from People's Pops that was refreshing and delish, plus an absurdly expensive coconut water from a company that I can't remember. I could have just went to the fresh fruit cart near my house and picked up a fresh coconut for about 2-3 bucks that would have been better. Bah humbug. Aside from that one hiccup, I had an awesome time, and I'd definitely go again next year. 

Did any of you guys go to either day of Googa? What did you love and what did you hate? Also did anyone get to try the Foie Gras Doughnuts from Do or Dine??? I'm still pissed I missed out on that.

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