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What's the best and worst tasting game meat you have ever tried?

JerryBobCoJerryBobCo Senior MemberPosts: 8,227 Senior Member
Notice I said 'tried'? I 'tried' to eat a piece of backstrap off of a big javelina boar that my then BIL shot one time. It was by far the most God awful thing I've ever tried to eat. I managed to chew it a little, but that was as far as I could get. I ended up spitting it out.

I've also had antelope (pronghorn) that would have one bite in a cut of meat that was simply terrible. The rest of the cut or steaks would be good, but for some reason there would be one little part of it that was simply inedible.

As for best tasting, a friend of mine shot a cow moose a few years ago and shared some of the meat with me. It was as good as anything I've ever eaten.
Jerry

Gun control laws make about as much sense as taking ex-lax to cure a cough.
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Replies

  • orchidmanorchidman Senior Member Posts: 8,238 Senior Member
    About the only one that stands out from a list of outstandingly good game meat are the peacocks I culled from the place that grows chili's.
    Their crops were crammed with fresh chili's and the meat had been infused with an awesome flavour from 3-5 weeks of an all chili diet. No matter what I did to the meat it always came out perfect. Roasted, grilled, fried, stewed, smoked, casseroled, it was just heavenly. the only part of my body that didnt enjoy it was....umm..........never mind. The property has been taken over by a new motorway much to my disgust damnit.

    Cant really say anything about bad game meat, apart from trying to eat a couple of mallard ducks which was the result of a 'magic hour' on a pond, where 7 of us shot our limits of 10 (each) in the space of less than an hour. Couple of weeks later I pulled a couple out of the freezer, defrosted them and started to roast them.
    As they started to cook it smelled like a sewerage treatment plant. Halfway through cooking them I couldnt stand it any longer and dug a hole and buried them, still in the foil roasting dish.

    Found out later that the storm when we were shooting them had driven them off a dairy farm sludge pond and they had been resident there for 4-5 weeks swimming around in cow crap. Rang the guys I had hunted with and we ended up ditching all 70 of them.
    They stunk so bad that even the eel fisherman I used to give the dead mallards from culls to ( mallards are the best eel bait you can get), rang me to say that even the eels wouldnt eat them.
    ( If an eel wont eat dead meat then it must be bad, hell, they eat dead roadkill possums that have sat in the sun for 4-5 days!!)

    All the rest of the game meat I eat is great.
    Still enjoying the trip of a lifetime and making the best of what I have.....
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 22,429 Senior Member
    I think the worst I ever ate was a ****. I read in Field and Stream or Outdoor life many years ago about how a **** wasn't bad if you treated the meat right. Well I guess either I was clueless on how to treet the meat at that time or the author was full of crap. I suspect the latter to be the case. For one thing it smelled bad before I ever cleaned it. Then there was that fine furry looking layer of feathers on its skin, down. Anyway, I tried roasting it in Garlic butter. I didn't get the first bite down and that thing went in the trash. No more **** for the kid here and I'm very careful what I believe when I read something about food now. Runner up to the **** would be a big bore hog my son killed. That thing was truly inedible. It had knots all in the meat and it was strong enough to walk dead. That's why I really don't care to shoot a big boar. Gimme a sow anyday.

    Then the best Ive ever eaten. That would be some Elk steaks a guy I tought Hunter Ed to brought me back from Colorado. A few minutes on a hot grill and they were good as choice beef I think. Of course, I do love regular white tail venison too. Young and tender it's almost impossible to beat.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • dlkdlk Member Posts: 419 Member
    :vomit:I shot a spike elk one year and that was DELICIOUS! The first duck I shot and cooked in butter was good, too. I like deer, ducks and geese, but one year I shot a tundra swan. It was fun to shoot and an impressive trophy, but YUCK! Completely inedible! Had soybeans in its crop, but tasted like swamp.
    STEALTH COMPETENT

    I know what I'm doing, it just doesn't look like it.
  • jbohiojbohio Senior Member Posts: 5,600 Senior Member
    I really like whitetail, but I think elk is better. YUM!
    Probably the worst I ever ate was a duck, some kind of diver (can't remember at the moment). Awful. Tasted like an old oyster shell that was full of mud.
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 17,617 Senior Member
    I've had some meat from a big old boar black bear that a friend shot...truly rank and nasty... it isn't all bear meat though - I've had bear hams that were wonderful.

    Note on coots...they need to be clean IMMEDIATELY upon retrieval...step on the wings as close to the body as you can get, pull on the feet until the thing comes apart. You'll be left with a breast. remove the skin from the remainder and put it on ice... To cook - salt, pepper then grill it with a good BBQ sauce...they are actually pretty tasty - further note: This isn't to be compared to a wild celery fed Canvasback (heck - a **** isn't even a duck!)...but it IS palatable...
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • CaliFFLCaliFFL Senior Member Posts: 5,486 Senior Member
    Moose is my personal favorite. If I could bag a moose every year, I'd stop deer hunting. And I love venison.

    Worst ever has to be muskrat. Beaver runs a close second.
    When our governing officials dismiss due process as mere semantics, when they exercise powers they don’t have and ignore duties they actually bear, and when we let them get away with it, we have ceased to be our own rulers.

    Adam J. McCleod


  • LinefinderLinefinder Moderator Posts: 7,485 Senior Member
    JerryBobCo wrote: »

    As for best tasting, a friend of mine shot a cow moose a few years ago and shared some of the meat with me. It was as good as anything I've ever eaten.

    Which you shared with me, and those are my same sentiments. That moose was the best game animal I've ever eaten.

    "Worst"......that trophy buck antelope I shot 3 seasons ago. Every other antelope I've tried has been good. That one was just wonky. Even the backstraps were no good.

    Mike
    "Walking away seems to be a lost art form."
    N454casull
  • woodsrunnerwoodsrunner Senior Member Posts: 2,725 Senior Member
    As long as I can buy grain-fed Black Angus at the supermarket, I'll never again eat any wild meat!
  • NNNN Senior Member Posts: 24,953 Senior Member
    **** and red-breasted merganser and common merganser are as bad as each other.

    Best was a Chilean tinamou
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 17,617 Senior Member
    As long as I can buy grain-fed Black Angus at the supermarket, I'll never again eat any wild meat!

    Really? I like my beef, and we get top-end beef around here really cheap, but I'll take venison anytime...amazing when it's treated right...
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • breamfisherbreamfisher Senior Member Posts: 13,692 Senior Member
    Venison has been both my best and my worst. Elk is right tasty, too, but I think it wasn't as well done as the venison. It all depends on how it's cooked, kept, and ultimately butchered.
    Overkill is underrated.
  • scarfacescarface Member Posts: 263 Member
    Elk, Venison, and Buffalo have been my favorites. I really can't say that I have had a really bad experience with wild game. Wild turkey can be tough if you shoot an old Tom, but I have found that using a smoker, or oven bag makes a great tasting turkey. All of the White Tail that I have shot have been butchered locally and the meat was awesome.

    The best piece of game that I have ate was a Buffalo Ribeye Steak that was marinated in Guinness. It was spectacular!
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 22,429 Senior Member
    Jayhawker wrote: »
    Really? I like my beef, and we get top-end beef around here really cheap, but I'll take venison anytime...amazing when it's treated right...

    To me, they're two different entities. Beef is in a different class. When I want beef, good beef, I don't want wild anything. But when I want wild meat, give me a whitetail and I'm happy. I like a lot of wild game And I like it cooked different ways. But when I'm in the mood for beef, that's a different thing altogether and when I'm in that mood, that's all I want.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • jaywaptijaywapti Senior Member Posts: 4,991 Senior Member
    The best was corn fed whitetails from Wisconsin, the worst is a toss up between a muley fron the sagebrush country NW of Rifle Co. and a Green Water Snake from the Everglades.

    JAY
    THE DEFINITION OF GUN CONTROL IS HITTING THE TARGET WITH YOUR FIRST SHOT
  • Shoemaker SethShoemaker Seth Member Posts: 139 Member
    Farmland mule deer backstrap was awesome, as was marinated and grilled gambles quail. I made some Dutch oven duck that was absolutely delectable as well. Worst was some road kill javalina that we grilled. But a javalina that I shot made some excellent jerky. Merganser ain't all that hot either.
    Some threads I read for information. Others I read for entertainment value.
  • FisheadgibFisheadgib Senior Member Posts: 5,797 Senior Member
    My best and worst were also whitetail deer. The worst was a doe that I shot in northern Wisconsin that was one of the gamiest tasting pieces of meat that I'd ever eaten and the best was the yearlings that I shot in south central Alabama. I'd shot lots of deer in the agrcultural area's of southern Wisconsin that tasted fine but there is very little agriculture in the northern part of the state and the taste of the deer reflects it. Any diving duck rates a close second on bad also.
    snake284 wrote: »
    For my point of view, cpj is a lot like me
    .
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 22,429 Senior Member
    Amen on the diving ducks. They taste like a crap sandwich. Except of course the two famous desireable divers, the Red Head and the Canvassback. But those two though they dive don't eat much fish. They mainly eat vegetation growing off the bottom, so they dive to get it. But they are true divers in that they sit on the water like a diver and they take off like a diver. They need a little more runway. Puddle ducks are more akin to a helicoptor and divers more like fixed wing aircraft.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • Six-GunSix-Gun Senior Member Posts: 8,155 Senior Member
    Best tasting: kudu (while in South Africa). Absolutely delicious with a creamy finish to it. I wish other could have the chance to try it, but I know that's a tall order.

    Worst tasting: white tail buck that a buddy was kind enough to give me. I didn't want to look a gift horse in th mouth, but I also couldn't make it through 2 bites. I don't know if the meat spoiled before he froze it or the buck just tasted rutted up, but it was bad.
    Accuracy: because white space between bullet holes drives me insane.
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 22,429 Senior Member
    Yeah, sometimes if a buck is shot during rut and all his harmonial juices are flowing in his blood, he'll taste more like an old boar hog than a deer. That's why I will usually choose a doe or young buck over a virile buck with a larger rack, of course unless it's a real trophy. However, if I see a big buck that isn't as big as what i have already got mounted, I'll pass over it for a nice fat doe.

    And some people like to make sausage out of a big old buck because they think the seasoning will cover the strong taste. I got news for them. All you get is some bad tasting sausage. No thanks, I'll make my sausage out of what I would normally eat. That's one reason I went to making all pork or pork and beef sausage. My family and I would rather cook venison and eat it than make sausage out of it, when I can kill a wild hog and make an excellent sausage or go to a meat packer and buy a box of hog trimmings that make great sausage.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • sarg1csarg1c Senior Member Posts: 1,707 Senior Member
    Deer meat, and deer meat...not everyone can do deer justice, but some can cook it right.Takes knowing how....
  • QuinianQuinian Senior Member Posts: 707 Senior Member
    Best I've had is a toss up between elk and moose. In all fairness the only moose I had was burger but man it was the best burger I've ever had.

    Worst has got to be squirrel
  • FreezerFreezer Senior Member Posts: 2,088 Senior Member
    Best I've had is Elk followed by the Blacktail deer I harvest and butcher myself. I prefer it to my brothers whitetail but I don't believe he handles his meat as well as he could. The worst, though I haven't tried ****, has got to be spoonies (Greater Northern Shoveler). They tast like liver and I hate liver!
    I like Elmer Keith; I married his daughter :wink:
  • DoctorWhoDoctorWho Senior Member Posts: 9,496 Senior Member
    Best game I have had = Guinea hens, free range Chickens, Goats, hogs.....

    Worst, rancid stinky smelling hogs, goats......
    "There is some evil in all of us, Doctor, even you, the Valeyard is an amalgamation of the darker sides of your nature, somewhere between your twelfth and final incarnation, and I may say, you do not improve with age. Founding member of the G&A forum since 1996
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 17,617 Senior Member
    DoctorWho wrote: »
    Best game I have had = Guinea hens, free range Chickens, Goats, hogs.....

    Worst, rancid stinky smelling hogs, goats......

    I just gotta ask....since when are Guinea hens and free range chickens "game"? Pheasants, quail, grouse, etc etc etc are "game"
    Goats and hogs are either domestic stock or feral domestic stock...not "game" either...
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • bisleybisley Senior Member Posts: 10,812 Senior Member
    I had an elk T-bone that was delicious, on a par with the best beef steaks. The worst was the dark meat on a wild turkey. The breast was great, but the drumsticks were way gamy.
  • conchokidconchokid Administrator Posts: 512 Senior Member
    As has been stated here in various ways, it's up to the cook. A good cook can make tenderloin of skunk taste pretty good, though I've never sampled it.
    It also depends a lot on what the critter has been grazing on. I've tasted pine-cone fed venison that tasted like it was marinated in turpentine and corn-fed deer that compared to a Ruth's Chris steak. Well, maybe not that good...
    Some of the best wild game I've eaten was elk, antelope (killed in Mexico), and bison. Squirrel and cottontail rabbit can be made quite tasty. At least, my mother could.
    And being raised in Texas, I love the taste of mourning doves. Back in the wonderous '50s and '60s, central Texas dove hunting was almost like the pictures I've seen from Argentina — hundreds, maybe thousands in the sky at one time, back in the days when farmers grew a lot of maize. Many a day I'd get my limit in half an hour after getting home from high school.
    How many of you have tasted rattlesnake? Like the cliche says, "tastes like chicken." Of course, given enough salt and grease, anything tastes like chicken.
  • conchokidconchokid Administrator Posts: 512 Senior Member
    Maybe a bit like calamari, as I recall. Of course if the hot sauce is hot enough, you won't be able to taste anything.
    Try to get a little r&r in Miami. Or even Detroit.
  • JerryBobCoJerryBobCo Senior Member Posts: 8,227 Senior Member
    conchokid wrote: »
    It also depends a lot on what the critter has been grazing on. I've tasted pine-cone fed venison that tasted like it was marinated in turpentine and corn-fed deer that compared to a Ruth's Chris steak. Well, maybe not that good...

    That's a good point. I've eaten mule deer that came out of sage brush that I couldn't stomach, and mule deer that fed on manzanita and similar plants that was very good.

    Around here, we have these small grey squirrels that live exclusively in pine trees. I guess their primary diet is pine cones. Like the mule deer you mentioned above, they taste like turpentine. That's probably why there's so dang many of them.
    Jerry

    Gun control laws make about as much sense as taking ex-lax to cure a cough.
  • conchokidconchokid Administrator Posts: 512 Senior Member
    The squirrels I've eaten were pecan-fed in Texas. Big fox squirrels and pretty tasty.
    I didn't mention bobwhite quail earlier. Very good meat.
    One of the worst game meals was with my buddy Henry Radde when we were in high school. We were duck hunting on Lake Whitney and killed a couple of gadwalls. Being teenagers, we didn't think of bringing anything to eat so we built a fire, cleaned and cut up the ducks with our pocket knives, and cooked them with no salt, seasoning or bread any kind. Pretty awful.
  • AiredaleAiredale Banned Posts: 624 Senior Member
    Wambli, you're a gastromonic wonder!!
    Where'd you find the sea turtle??
    Please don't tell me "in the ocean"
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