Although the logic isn’t 100 percent airtight (particularly from a vegetarian perspective), the Observer (UK) makes the case that the ultimate ethical meal is a gray squirrel.
“It’s low in fat, low in food miles and completely free range,” and it’s flying off of shelves faster than hunters can gun down the poor little bastards, long despised in the UK as low-class rivals to the native red tufty variety.
The folks selling them—in impressive numbers—argue that it’s more than just a question of ethics.
[Shopping center director David] Simpson likens the taste to wild boar. [Shop owner David] Ridley thinks it is more a cross between duck and lamb. ‘It’s moist and sweet because, basically, its diet has been berries and nuts,’ he said.
Another theory on the squirrel’s newfound popularity? Sheer novelty.
“If they can say, ‘Darling, tonight we’re having squirrel,’ then that takes care of the first 30 minutes of any dinner party conversation,” says the Observer’s restaurant critic, Jay Rayner.
Hoping to provoke a dinnertime discussion/revolt? Best Prices Storable Foods sells bone-in and boneless dehydrated squirrel meat by the gallon or quart. And, heck, why not, squirrel filets.