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Slider Invasion, Pulled Pork Edition

Clay West is a fairly new bar up in Bayer's Lake. The owners took over Kokomos, and changed out the decor (good bye straw roof!) and also changed out the menu for something made with more locally sourced ingredients. The result? do read on...

First thing you'll notice about Clay West is some of the unusual twists they put on their menus. Potato Skins? Natch. Sweet Potato Skins. Toast? Add mushrooms, bacon, herbs, garlic, balsamic reduction and parmesan. And if you like pulled pork, shrink it into sliders, throw some crispy onions and guacamole on top, and sell a pair of them for $7.50. Oh, and make some of the best slaw you've ever had magically appear on the side of the plate, just for fun.

Now you're talking.

Let's turn up the volume on the awesomeness of these sliders a little - show up at Clay West after 8 pm, order yourself a drink, and magically all your appetizers become half price. By my math, that makes the pair of sliders just $3.75. So forget that Starbucks vente chai tea latte, with soy, no water and 5 pumps of whatever, made by your favorite hipster. Save yourself some cash, and get some pulled pork sliders instead. You'll get a pair of little darlings on a plate, with just enough slaw to tantalize on the side.

Now, let's talk about slaw. There's all sorts of slaw out there, with sauerkraut being at one end of the spectrum, and that really ultra-mayofied commercial slaw on the other. Maybe you like one end of the spectrum, maybe you prefer the other. Clay West has slaw that splits the difference and gives you something with just enough bite to slap your tonsils and uvula around a bit and make them take notice. Every single bite of their slaw is like an episode of Hell's Kitchen in your mouth, complete with Gordon Ramsay barking orders. A little snap, a little soothing, and this slaw delivers both. As soon as you finish the small portion of slaw they've given you, you're going to want more. Clay West is very much like a burlesque dancer, giving you just enough of something to make you want - no - crave more of it.

Once the slaw has gone down the hatch, your mouth now singing with an eagerness it hasn't seen in weeks, it's time to deliver the goods. These little sliders are just a handful, no more. Pick one up - smell it - turn it around slowly in your hands. Wait - that smells amazing, Smell it again. Breathe in that smoky BBQ flavor. Damn. This pulled pork is gonna hit your mouth and then it's game over. You take your first bite and all of your senses tell you that you've hit the ball out of the park. The aroma you smelled earlier lands on your tongue like a world war two platoon hitting the beach. The texture is amazing, the taste flows to all the corners of your mouth and you can't stop smiling as you chew. Can you smile that much and chew at the same time? Apparently so. Take your second bite, get some of the crispy onions in there, a dollop of smooth guacamole to offset the bite of the BBQ sauce. If this slider was a car, you'd just have shifted into high gear and have the top down.

Just think - finish that slider and there's another one waiting, and its going to taste equally good. This is what food's meant to be, taste bud nirvana.

After you've finished your second slider, take a deep breath. Let it out slowly. Go have a smoke. You deserve it.

Clay West Bar & Grill
120 Susie Lake Crescent
Halifax, NS B3S 1C7
(902) 876-8555

damn.

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