After the Accidental Locavore’s Croatian dinner, I needed to see if I could find some of the amazing charcuterie a little closer to home. With dreams of the kulin wafting through my brain, I was directed to Muncan’s in Astoria. If browsing their website doesn’t make you hungry, you’re probably vegan. And if the website is appealing, imagine the store itself (just picture a shrine to cured meats)!
The easiest part of it is the subway ride, because once you’re there you’re bound to be overwhelmed. If 15 different types of bacon don’t do it for you, there are literally hundreds of smoked and cured sausages and salami hanging from the ceiling. Even my kulin mission had me deciding between a kulin sausage and a kulin salami (I took the sausage).
After that, I availed myself of the expertise of the counter man. We decided on a hot salami, a couple of small square sausages (that reminded me of ones I liked from Morse’s in Maine) and a lumpy looking salami that when sliced has a scalloped edge.
They have prosciutto made from almost any animal or bird, so I decided to give the lamb one a shot. It was delicious, a little smoky and a little salty (both good qualities in my mind), but I’m not sure I would recognize it as tasting particularly like lamb.
Although not as amazing as the one we were served at the dinner, the kulin was good. This one was smoky with a little heat and an almost crumbly texture. Probably a good thing or I would have scarfed it all down in a heartbeat.
The “lumpy” salami was great–mild, with a little garlic and a good amount of fat. Between sandwiches and sneaking pieces on the sly, it was the first to go.
The spicy sausage was almost a cross between the kulin and a chorizo. Very spicy, with a lot of hot paprika, it also had that nice crumbly texture and not a ton of fat.
And finally, the square ones were really nice and fatty and smoky. I think they were the best snacking ones (and put them to that use).
Now, I’m looking forward to my next trip over there to see what other goodies lay in store. Remember, I still haven’t tried any of the 15 types of bacon yet!