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Authors: nytimes Diners Journal

Come Hither, City Quail
Come Hither, City Quail
Come Hither, City QuailKarsten Moran for The New York Times

David Tanis, who writes the weekly City Kitchen column, is the author of two cookbooks, “A Platter of Figs and Other Recipes” and “Heart of the Artichoke and Other Kitchen Journeys.”

For this week’s City Kitchen column, I needed a few quail. It turned out that hunting them down in the urban jungle was less complicated than I imagined. Indeed, the first butcher I called had just received a delivery of fresh quail. Out of curiosity, I investigated a handful of other local options.

A quail is a quail is a quail, perhaps, but there were definitely variations in size and price and some butchers would only take orders in advance. In my small survey, birds weighing around 4 ounces ranged in price from $3.50 to $6 apiece.

I checked out the following New York City purveyors and here’s what I found. The Upper West Side Fairway had smallish, fresh, vacuum-packed Georgia quail. Pino’s Prime Meat Market in SoHo had plump birds from New Jersey. Ottomanelli & Sons on Bleecker Street sells only frozen quail, and Citarella says they always have them by request. D’Artagnan sells both fresh and frozen bone-in or semi-boneless local quail online.

If you have tips on good sources for quail, please share them here.

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