Best Raw Meat Dish: Carnal satisfaction
As millions of American sushi lovers have learned, there's something incredibly seductive about eating raw meat -- its velvety texture, the way it takes to vivid seasoning without giving up its essential, well, meatiness. But we're conditioned by fast-food scandals and E. coli horror stories to think the only meat we can eat crudo is fish. The Ethiopian classic, kitfo, reminds us why steak tartare once captivated our grandparents. At Cafe Colucci, which makes a lovely kitfo, the cooks chop high-quality beef and mix it with melted, spiced butter, then serve the meat with curd cheese, braised greens, and a fiery pepper called mitmita. Cafe Colucci's kitfo tastes buttery, the perfume of cardamom wafting up from every bite. Sure, the cooks will sear the kitfo for the squeamish, but try it as it's meant to be tasted. When the mound of raw beef arrives, if you find yourself losing your mettle, just close your eyes and think of ahi.