It took me forever to find the damn hole-in-the-wall restaurant, which was a good thing because it meant I was hungrier when I got in there. There it is on the right with the red and blue sign.
I didn't anticipate the level of commitment this stunt was gong to require: I was thinking I could go in and order the stuff, try it, eat it if it was good and bail out after three bites if it was gross. Idiotically, I went at 6:00pm, was the only customer in the restaurant and the proprietor was watching me like a hawk: I was going to have to finish my bosintang or leave in disgrace. Initiate psych-up sequence.
tragic_and_hip told me his bosintang experience was "delicious," so I was expecting the dog meat to be indistinguishable from beef or pork. It wasn't: this stuff was decidedly doggy, like, it had a sort of dogfur aroma and flavor to it. The soup also had a lot of green onions and those unidentifiable stringy greens that are also pictured in a bowl alongside. That big bowl of black pepper contained twice the quantity before the proprietor came up, dumped a huge mound of it into the bowl and stirred it up for me. This made the flavor of the meat seem much more penetrative; I felt like I was sweating the dog scent out of my pores.
Thar be dog meat in its chili, black pepper and oil dippin' sauce. It was tender but pretty heavily marbled with fat, a meaty feature repugnant to me under the best of circumstances. There were also dark rinds of dog fat in the soup; ugh, man, I mean, oh, man, it was not easy to put this in my mouth.
Now, bosintang is a medicinal food; one of the alleged health benefits is increased virility for men. Manager Sin warned me gravely, "Don't eat it, or you're going to be so horny you won't be able to sleep that night." I was just about to write that it didn't work, that horniness hovered around basal levels, but no! I now remember that the day I ate bosintang was the night I came home late, clubbed The Canuck over the head, dragged her by the hair out to a bar, and we returned with preliminary evidence that human boys may exist. Addled by hound flesh? Synchronously ovulating? Or might I be in possession of a soupçon of game after all?