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The Glutton

January 17, 2008

What's so awful about offal? The Glutton, intrigued by any meat product that's cooked in another meat product, has vowed to test her courage with haggis, a traditional Scottish dish made by grinding sheep's organs with oats, spices and minced onions, then boiling them in the stomach of said sheep. If you've eaten a Dodger dog, you've probably eaten worse.

Few restaurants cook haggis. If they do, they offer it only once a year, in late January, at their annual Robert Burns supper. For those unfamiliar, just know that Burns penned what is probably the greatest ode to meat in the (nominally) English language, "Address to a Haggis" ("Great chieftain o' the puddin-race!").

In honor of the Ploughman Poet, Buchanan Arms (Burbank) mounts a Burns supper on Jan. 26 complete with the traditional "piping in" of the haggis and the recitation of Burns' poem. Beckham Grill (Pasadena) forgoes the ceremony but offers the accompaniment of bagpipers as well as free haggis with dinner (Jan. 27). The Tam O' Shanter (Los Feliz) hosts the grandest Rabbie Burns celebration, partying like it's 1759 for three full nights (Tuesday to next Thursday). Each evening features two seatings, both of which include the procession, the bagpipes, the ode and roving performers who recite poetry and act out skits.

Embrace the entrails!

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-- theguide@latimes.com

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