Meat Streets: The Ultimate Travel Experiences For Devoted Carnivores

For meat lovers only, these delicious destinations are sure to satisfy man-sized appetites, and that of some ladies, too. They’ll appeal to you especially if you’re on track with the thinking of actor John Cleese from Monty Python: “If God did not intend for us to eat animals, then why did he make them out of meat?” Read on….

Steak outs

A big, juicy steak is a beautiful thing. Not surprisingly, you’ll find plenty of them served at eateries in Texas where size matters especially when it comes to meat. Wear your loosest pair of jeans when you go to the Big Texan Steak Ranch in Amarillo, Texas. It’s biggest slab weighs in at 72 oz. and it’s free if you can eat it (along with shrimp cocktail, baked potato and buttered rolled) within an hour. Mind your manners while you eat. You get a special seat on stage for all to see your attempt at gluttony.

It’s not even on the menu, but insiders know to ask for “The Cowboy,” a 50 oz. whopper served at Sidecut, the posh eatery at the Four Seasons Whistler in British Columbia. Fortunately, you don’t have to eat it in under an hour. No one cares whether you eat the whole thing or not, it will still cost ya!

Love old-school steakhouses? Try Barberians in Toronto. The décor might look like that of well-worn bordello, but the steaks are always cooked to perfection and the massive wine list makes cork dorks giddy. Or the more modern Hy’s Steakhouse around since 1955 (with locations in Vancouver, Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa and Whistler) and Le Biftheque in Montreal.

Burger masters

Big burger fans scoff at quarter pounders. That’s strictly lightweight stuff. Instead, they go to places like Dangerous Dan’s Dinner in Toronto for its Collosal Colon Clogger Combo – 24 oz. burger served with a quarter pound of cheese, a quarter pound of bacon, and 2 fried eggs. It also comes with a large shake and a small poutine.

If you’re the fancy gourmet sort, i.e. you PVR Food Network shows and you have more than three kinds of mustard in your fridge, then indulge yourself with the Grand Burger from McGuires Irish Pub in Pensacola, Florida. It’s ground filet mignon, served with a side of caviar and a magnum of champagne, which explains the $100 US price tag.

For decadence of a different sort, try the bacon burger at Chuck’s Burger Bar in Hamilton, Ontario. This isn’t just beef topped with strips of bacon. The patty is entirely made up of ground bacon in all its salty, fatty glory. It’s wickedly good. Pair it with a Diet Coke, if you’re worried about belly bulge. They also have bison, Angus beef, lamb, venison, chicken and turkey. (There’s a veggie burger for socks-with-sandals types.)

Meaty events

These annual happenings are worth planning year vacation around:

The temptation to make puns here is too great, so forgive me. You’re sure to have a ball at the Testicle Festival (July 31- August 4, 2013) in Clinton, Montana. Fried, baked, or barbecued, some say these are caviar of the meat world. Judge for yourself….

Series barbecuers should make the trek to Kansas City, Missouri for the American Royal Barbecue Contest in October. This is the big one—the World Series of barbecue mastery. More than five hundred teams compete fork-to-fork, sauce-to-sauce, in the largest competition of its kind anywhere.

Homegrown Canadian talents will do battle in Whistler, BC, from August 2-4, 2013, at the Canadian National BBQ Championships. Nibble your way from brisket to ribs and vote for the best with your appetite.

Does Spam count as meat? If it does in your books, then visit Spam Jam (held each April) in Waikiki, Hawaii. Created in 1937, the beloved mystery meat holds a special place in the hearts of Hawaiians. They eat more per capita than any other state. Spam sushi? You bet. Try it here.

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