Food Trendlet: Poutine!

It’s Canadian. It involves cheese curds. It’s a heart attack on a stick. Say bienvenue to poutine.

It may not quite have instant trend appeal of bacon or mac-n-cheese, but poutine – arguably the only Canadian national dish anyone's heard of outside of Canada -- is suddenly everywhere. (Grub Street, ever anxious to claim a trend by already pronouncing it over, recently asked “Is Poutine Becoming Routine?”)

So what is it? French fries with gravy -- ideally a slightly nutmeggy beef gravy, if you want to get picky about it -- and cheese curds on top. (Note: When topped with regular melted cheese, it’s not poutine, just disco fries. Curds = one of the markers of poutine authenticity.) No, it’s not healthy, but it gets cold in Quebec, where this stuff originated, and all that clogging of arteries helps one stay warm. Where to try it in NYC:

Tonight at Draft Barn's (Gowanus) Onion-sponsored Unibroue beer (from Quebec) tasting event.

Duck confit poutine makes an appearance on the menu at the new Hotel Griffou. We haven't tried this version. Sounds fawncy.

All-pout’ eatery TPoutine on Ludlow Street will offer 11 takes on the dish, including the French Quarter, with Cajun shrimp and bourbon sauce. Should be open to the public any day now – eyeball their Twitter feed.

While Park Slope’s Sheep Station pub is Australian of bent, it’s Quebecois of owner. The house poutine is made with cheddar curds, and there’ll be a three special varieties on offer June 24, on St. Jean-Baptiste Day.

Shopsin’s, Stall 16, at Essex Market. Curdtastic.

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