Rattlesnake and rabbit sausage + elk sausage. $8 each. Rosamundes, Mission St., Mission District, San Francisco.
Never failing to disappoint as the purveyor of the finest sausages in the city, Rosamunde’s has a rotating selection of premium dogs to match their rotating premium beers. These often feature some unique cuts (or rather, blends) of meat, as in this case with a rattlesnake and rabbit sausage (my sister’s pick, above) and an elk and cheddar sausage (mine, below and in the close-up).
Flavor: 3.5 / 5
The elk didn’t disappoint, with a juicy, slightly gamy flavor that the cheddar cuts with a small sharp punch. The rattlesnake was more disappointing this time around (it not being the first time I’ve had it). Typically the dryness of both the rabbit meat and the snake meat are compensated for by the juices that build up in the sausage, leaving it packed with sweet arid desert flavor. But this is sensitive to cooking times, and this go-around the sausage had lost some of its moisture and, thus, its unique taste. Still, tasty.
Fun: 2.5 / 5
Rosamunde’s wins a little on the fun factor just for having the best selection of beers and creative dipping sauces of any cheap food joint in town (i.e. garlic mayo, wasabi mustard). For extra food chain fun, one can also imagine that the rattlesnake ate the rabbit that you are now devouring in toto.
Funkiness: 2.5 / 5
As with most offbeat red meat and game, the funky factor doesn’t often fly much further than the name (try spotting an ostrich, bison, beef or elk burger out of that lineup). But there’s something about a rattlesnake and rabbit mash-up that deserves some big credit.