Before eating mussels in Europe, you need to make your peace with God. A short prayer will do, or perhaps a joyous fist bump because these muhfuckin mussels are gonna be some heavenly goddamn shit.
Don’t even get me started.
They’ve got two sauces, white and the other one. White is like, garlic or something. Garlic and white wine. It’s delicious. It’s like the ranch dressing of European sauces – plain, boring, and inexplicably awesome. The other one is probably curry or something. It’s spicy, tangy, special. Unique. Just the smell of it gives you this kind of sauce high that’s like riding a horse into the sun. Big willie style.
The mussels at the good restaurants come out in these big black metal pots, like the chefs in the back just dredged the little beasties up from the sewer below the shop. I mean that they are fresh, or seem fresh at least. And the black pots are intimidating and exciting. This is the kind of pot that you cook a big ass stew in, not serve a meal in. This is the kind of pot that your great-grandfather wore as a helmet while storming out of the trenches in World War I. This is the kind of pot that Louis XVI had his morning bowel movement in after sexing up Marie Antoinette. This pot has been around, man, it’s seen some literal shit. And now it’s holding mussels for you.
When the garcon sets the dish down at the table, he pulls the top off like a magician and this big wave of mussel stench pours out over your face. It’s like a sauna. Opens your pores and makes you salivate. Better roll up your damn sleeves.
At first glance, you might estimate there are something like 30 mussels in the pot. That’s a lot of mussels for one person, but you’ll think you can do it. I mean, they smell awesome and you’re starving and it’s Europe, why not indulge a little bit? You’re probably drunk too. But let’s get one thing straight: It’s not 30 mussels. It’s like 30(goddamn)000.
That’s 30,000, for those who can’t parse my parentheses.
You’re gonna be eating mussels for the next two years, at least. Hope you’re comfortable. It’s cool, though, you could be spending those two years not eating mussels. Think about how awful that would be.
The first mussel tastes like a thumbs up from Gandhi. And that dude didn’t even eat, so you know it’s good.
The second mussel tastes like the first, but with the added benefit of ten thousand warm rays of sunlight on a Caribbean beach. This is useful because it’s probably dreary and cold in France.
The third mussel tastes a lot like the other two, but with a pretty decent blow job as well. Nice.
The fourth tastes maybe even better somehow. In fact, the first 20 or 30 mussels taste pretty damn good. Then you’ll start to notice your surroundings again. Like, your friends all staring at you as you make these weird hungry-dog-with-a-bone noises while sucking the curry juice out of each shell. Your hands and forearms will be covered with sauce. Like, inch thick, hardened sauce shell. Still tastes good though when you crack it off your skin.
No turning back, though, still like 10,000 mussels to go. The pot is fucking bottomless. Literally. You can plunge your hand into the shells and keep on going all the way to your shoulder without touching the bottom. Just miles and miles of delicious sauce and steaming mussels.
Eventually, you’ll finish your meal. Maybe it’ll finish you. Kind of up in the air about how it goes, honestly. At the very least, you’ll have put on some “mussel.” Haha, get it, mussel/muscle, don’t worry, girls dig guys with “mussels.”
I’ll be here all night. Be sure to tip your waitress. And bring me some mussels.