South African Dried Beef! Food Trend Watch 2014

Poor Morrissey. Surely he dreamed we’d all be herbivorous irreversus by now. But tragically for the Moz, in 2014, meat is “moder” (than ever).

Still, burgers are so passé, and beardy butchers déclassé. So as the trendometer plunges further below the class-divide line, what could be more hip than an upscaling of that old truckstop staple, beef jerky?

Behold: Biltong. But, um, please don’t actually call it jerky.

Apparently, while Americans were for so many years unquestioningly scarfing down their Slim Jims, South Africans had enjoyed a more epicurean incarnation of the machismo-infused snack that is dried beef.

And now it’s taken up a brick-and-mortar presence in NYC’s West Village, in the form of Monique Daniels’ jauntily named Jonty Jacobs. (BlackBook etymology lesson: A “jonty” can be either a right amazing bloke, or a poshie faux rudeboy.) Here the Biltong comes in dried slices, slabs and sausages (those known as Droewors), all grass fed, additive free, low-carb, high-protein…and it lasts for three years! (Unless you eat it, of course.)

For the carnivorous who still prefer their meat in “squishier” form, the shop also sells tasty beef, pork and lamb Sosaties–essentially South African kebabs–as well as stocking a range of other gourmet goodies.

Will Biltong go the, erm, full Jonty in the States? Hard to see how not. After all, isn’t the real American dream to have your beef and eat it too…without the corresponding angioplasty?

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