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Chef's kiss, Escargo!

The history of escargot is one that goes back thousands of years. Here at The Jackalope Grill we honor that history in one of our many delicious appetizers. Escargot, meaning "edible snail" in French, dates back to the Ancient Romans, who ate snails as an ordinary part of their diet. They harvested land snails from their gardens and cooked them in olive oil with spices, herbs and garlic. It was known as caracuminarium and was enjoyed as a delicacy. The earliest known record of snails as food dates to the 1st century B.C., when the Roman gourmet Apicius described a dish of snails stewed in a special sauce.

Since then, snails have made a name for themselves in European cuisine, and the French have been particularly fond of the mollusks. In the 16th century, the French gastronomist Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin wrote of the delicious snail dish of Burgundy, escargots à la Bourguignonnes, which were snails cooked in white wine, garlic and parsley butter. That original recipe is the same way that we prepare ours as a nod to the culture of French cuisine. If isn’t broken, don’t fix it, right?

During the 19th century, escargot really took off and became a popular delicacy in the Parisian bistros of the day, as well as in many other cities in Europe. The snails were harvested in the wild, cooked and served in the now-traditional shells with garlic, parsley and butter. In more recent history, escargot has become somewhat of a specialty item. It is still widely enjoyed throughout Europe, where it has long been particularly popular in France, Italy and Spain. Escargot is still a beloved delicacy for many around the world, in Asia and Africa escargot is served with a spicy sauce, and even the Americans jumping on the bandwagon - the creamy, garlicky dish always brings a smile to those who sample it! Cooking escargot at home is a sure-fire way to make any dinner party a success. So the next time you're feeling fancy, why not give escargot a try? Whether served as an appetizer or main course, escargot is an iconic dish that will surely delight any diner.

At The Jackalope Grill escargot is one of our many traditional options that we are sure you’ll revel in. A personal favorite of Chef Day and a perfect way to begin your experience if you haven’t indulged in much French American cuisine. Likewise, it wouldn’t be complete without a pour of wine next to it. That being said, we suggest you pair it with the 2016 Stoller Reserves Chardonnay for the best all-around flavor. The soft buttery notes of chardonnay always compliment the richness of a garlic and buttered dressed dish. Or you can ask our sommelier David Stofle for any other recommended pairings that are sure to please.

So call your friends, tell your spouse, and book your table for a seat at one of Central Oregon finest dining establishments. It’s time to treat yourself and your loved ones, we’ll be expecting you.

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