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Beef is blasé, pork is played out, and chicken is… well, it’s chicken. If you’re looking for a more exotic protein, try biting into one of these animals instead.

ELK

Thunder Burger 3056 M St. NW

Since it’s similar to beef sirloin, executive chef Ryan Fichter only adds mustard, parsley, thyme, salt, and pepper to his elk patty to allow its steak-like flavor to shine. Served on a challah bun, it’s simply topped with lettuce, tomato, and a cornichon ‘n’ caper remoulade sauce. Price: $15

ANTELOPE

Restaurant Eve 110 S. Pitt St., Alexandria

Executive chef Cathal Armstrong creates a not-your-average scrapple with ground-up antelope, which possesses a taste not unlike venison. It arrives with an egg atop a crispy golden hashbrown. Maple syrup is optional but recommended. Price: $14.98 for two items from the Lickety Split menu at the bar during lunch.

ALLIGATOR

Redline 707 G St. NW

Serving gator one way would have been too easy, so this Penn Quarter sportspub offers up a trifecta of pan-seared bites. The nibbles arrive with spicy chili sauce, applewood smoked barbecue, and tangy Dijon mustard. Price: $12.50

TURTLE

Acadiana 901 New York Ave. NW

Not to worry, no sea turtles were harmed in the making of this soup. Instead, chef Jeff Tunks uses Eastern snapping turtles from the Chesapeake Bay. Seared chunks of the steaky meat float in a gravy-style soup garnished with crumbles of hardboiled egg and parsley. Price: $9

FROG

New Big Wong 610 H St. NW

Frog actually does taste a lot like chicken. At this Chinatown favorite, their boney little legs are simply coated in flour before they’re pan-fried along with a snappy mix of snow peas and Chinese green beans. Price: $21.95

Graphic by Lauren Heneghan