Steve Rinella’s MEAT EATER | New Book Available September 4th | The Reverend Fowl ™ Interview | Exclusive Photos | Book Review

On Sale September 4, 2012




Hardcover/eBook/256 pages
Spiegel and Grau/Random House NYC
ISBN: 978-0-385-52981-5 (0-385-52981-3)
$13.99-$26.00 USA

Photo Courtesy of Steven Rinella

Other Works by Steven Rinella
American Buffalo
Hardcover/Paperback/288-304 pages 
The Scavenger’s Guide to Haute Cuisine
Hardcover/Paperback/318-336 pages
The Wild Within
TV Series/travel CHANNEL®

Photo Courtesy of Steven Rinella
The Classics, The Chase, Dollars and Ducks
An Interview with Steven Rinella

By The Reverend Fowl™

A brief interview with Author Steven Rinella on the occasion of his new book; Meat Eater which goes on sale September 4th

In your 2007 book, The Scavenger's Guide to Haute Cuisine, you try to apply the highest forms of cuisine to the American countryside. Nowadays, you have a reputation of practical utility. Can you give a brief opinion on what you think the current situation is for Foodies and Sportsmen in the Boom to Bust economy?

Steven Rinella:
I embrace all forms of wild game cookery, be it cave man stuff like fire-charred rib racks, middle-American staples like venison meat balls, or highbrow concoctions like Ossobuco. So I don’t really think of the preparations in The Scavenger’s Guide to Haute Cuisine as a deviation for me, nor do I think I’m on a different path now. To me it just seems like the same thing viewed from different angles: wild meat carefully prepared and thoroughly enjoyed. To better understand what I’m saying, consider something like marrow bones. It seems that femurs were one of the first forms of meat that early humans were cooking, probably because they scavenged the bones from carrion that had been otherwise picked over by scavengers. All they had to do was roast them in a fire and smack them open with rocks to get out the marrow. Nowadays you’re most likely to find femurs on the menus of our finest restaurants, usually just roasted and served. So the bones went from a subsistence item to Haute Cuisine simply because of a change in perspective. As for the current situation with foodies and sportsmen in the boom to bust economy, I can’t say that I’ve noticed any major shifts among the vast network of hunters that I associate with. The ones who were deep-frying bluegills a decade ago are deep-frying them still today. And the ones who were making woodcock pate a decade ago are making it now.

What is your most memorable Wing-Shooting experience?

Steven Rinella:
I lived in Montana for a decade. My best wing-shooting experiences happened while hunting waterfowl in that state. Sometimes, we’d get perfect weather conditions that would send droves of mallards and Canada geese into the lower Yellowstone Valley. If you were lucky, the birds would then stick around for a month or more. The flocks could be impossibly huge. We’d decoy birds into agricultural fields, and sometimes set up for them on river gravel bars and small islands. I loved collecting all that fat and rendering it down for Confit. It was the pure bliss of abundance.

Have you ever made a mistake regarding personal safety while hunting?

Steven Rinella:
Lots of times, though often the “mistakes” are more or less purposeful. I’m primarily a mountain hunter, and my favorite hunts take place in the alpine zone. It’s inherently dangerous. I just came off a Dall sheep hunt that had us in some pretty nasty situations on the mountain. And just before that, I was chasing Himalayan tahr in New Zealand on a mountain where a single slip could have meant death by falling. But I enjoy eating from the cliff’s edge. Close calls have a way of fine-tuning your taste buds. An animal’s meat carries with it the details of its harvest, and I love the taste of adventure.

Photo Courtesy of Steven Rinella
Book Review
Meat Eater by Steven Rinella | The Reverend Fowl™ Review | September 4th 2012 
Meat Eater is a suitable entertainment choice, gift or resource for anyone interested in American culture, folkways, food sourcing, food techniques, entertaining, hunting, fishing, foraging or adventure. The book’s debut is perfectly timed, sociologically relevant and brings its subject matters up-to-date.
The Meat Eater author exhibits great promise as a writer. His sociological views are easily expressed and corroborated by his experiences. Meat Eater is a much needed milestone, a right to be heard, defining and representing multiple generations.      
Meat Eater is peppered with challenging subjects like Indian Affairs, modernization, overregulation, conservation, stewardship, ethics, situational ethics, hunting/trapping/fishing relations, and Lower Michigan.   

Photo Courtesy of Steven Rinella
Like most hunting itineraries, Meat Eater contains a few distractions. The Meat Eater author will, from time to time, mention, what would be considered by many, to be strawy estimations of chronology, anthropology, humanism and ritualism. The Meat Eater author is careful however, to not discourage readers and easily makes up for any offenses with a mostly enjoyable book. Meat Eater remains a worthwhile read, a book worth having, and readers ought to eventually feel like a regular in one of Meat Eater’s hunting parties.  

Meat Eater’s style is very versatile and doubles as a resource book for wild game, featuring descriptions for testing, processing, preservation, flavor, texture, fat ratios, and appropriate preparation techniques. Meat Eater contains a sufficient quantity of photographs and each photograph is a cultural gem. Furthermore, Meat Eater contains an abundant variety of opportunities for the reader to reminisce, contemplate or make comparisons. Lastly, much of Meat Eater reads like a story, memoire or journal and is adventurously romantic.

Photo Courtesy of Random House


aquaFire Fishing said...

Sounds like a entertaining book. Thanks for the review!

Joseph Hord said...

I've seen a couple reviews of this book lately. It definitely sounds like one I need to read soon!

River Mud said...

Thanks for the review. I read "American Buffalo" and some parts of it I really enjoyed, and other parts were so wanderous that I put the book down for weeks at a time to read other books that kept my interest. Ultimately, I finished the book and was pretty satisfied with it. Think I'll give Rinella another try, based on your review.