Of all the atrocities those Lord of the Flies kids committed, it turns out the worst was staking the pig head -- apparently you can totally eat those things! Not convinced? Convinced, but pathetically unable to capture your own pig with homemade traps and spears? Then head to The Sample Room, where they've just unleashed the Half Pig's Head Smorgasbord, a for-two (or more), bisected hog dome for just $18. Lest you be daunted by the prospect of tearing in, steady yourself with the following knowledge:
- Sample's heads are delivered uncooked and pre-halved from Fischer Family Farms, at which point they torch the whiskers off, tuck all the components (see: brains!) in place, rub the skin in beer, salt, and oil, and then bake 'em for 12hrs, with an additional 30mins in the convection when it's ordered.
- There's somewhere around 1.5lbs of meat, and you can eat all of it: tongue, eye socket, ears, snout, skin, cheeks, jowls, and brains. You literally just start picking with your fingers, and, much like a seventh-grade dance floor makeout, stop when you get to the teeth.
- The brain's the only part of the dish that doesn't taste like pork: it's somewhere between foie gras and fish. Don't be intimidated: it's only the size of a big prune, and, if it still had neurons firing, would be way more scared of you than you are of it.
- Otherwise, there aren't weird flavors. For the most part, if you like some tender pork, you're like every guy in America, and you'll like this. The cheeks are fatty to the point of being buttery, the jowls are rich and juicy, the snout is dark and almost sweet, and so's the tongue.
The head comes with a plate of house-pickled red onions, eggs, and dijon, which work to break up the rich flavors, but if you're going to do it right, order the optional Booker's/ Blanton’s/Basil Hayden bourbons in a flight, which any fan of that savage book knows will be more pleasant than a fight.