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Pork Bung Gut (?) at 99 Ranch Market

Mackerel and Tea Lady, ink & watercolor, 5x8"
Mackerel and Tea Lady, ink & watercolor, 5×8″

We made our annual pre-Chinese New Year sketching visit to 99 Ranch Market and the Pacific East Mall (an Asian marketplace) with some new sketchers who joined us for our  monthly Urban Sketchers First Tuesdays sketch night.

I headed first to the fish department and we ended the evening at the Ten Ren Tea Shop (sketches above) where there were so many interesting and colorful items to draw but for some reason I chose instead to sketch the very nice shop girl.

Poultry and Pork on the Hook at 99 Ranch Market, ink & watercolor, 5x8"
Poultry and Pork on the Hook at 99 Ranch Market, ink & watercolor, 5×8″

After the fish, I went where the Peking Ducks hang and was surprised to see a small pork carcass hanging there too (on the right above). I drew it first, and then found myself in a race with a woman taking down the ducks to clean up for the night. She won the race and I ran out of ducks so I copied the menu instead.

Could that carcass be Pork Bung Gut? Or is it what it sounds like (ew) and just wasn’t on display?

It’s interesting how different cultures are squeamish about different parts of the animal. I grew up loving my grandma’s roasted beef tongue, the chicken feet in her chicken soup, and my dad’s gribenes (pronounced “gribnis”)—like pork rinds except made from chicken skin. After removing the delicious crispy skins from the hot chicken fat that he’d rendered from them, he put the fat in the fridge to harden and then spread that “schmaltz” on his rye bread instead of butter.

None of those foods sound gross to me, nor does caviar, raw oysters (yum!), or rump roast, but please don’t offer me brains or intestines, thank you very much.

You can see my friends’ great sketches from the evening on our Urban Sketchers blog here: Susan’sMicaela’s, Cathy’s, and Ceiny’s, and my sketches from previous visits to 99 Ranch in 20012 and 2010, 2010, 2007.

6 replies on “Pork Bung Gut (?) at 99 Ranch Market”

Hi Jana-
It occured to me after I posted to you that I also follow Aletha Kuschan, and a few days ago a friend of hers made a comment in French. She replied in French, so I made another comment in French as well. So I had the wrong artist. I apologize. I will remember in the future. I do love your art, and my neice and nephew live in Berkeley & Oakland, so I forward your posts to them a lot.
If you have not seen Aletha’s work her blog is:×5
Thank you-


It’s funny that you made me think about beef tongue. I have not thought about this dish for years. I too grew up eating this and never thought twice about it until my older sister, Linda, told me what the meat actually was. Well, that was the end of that! I never ate it again! Kippers were another favorite on Sunday mornings mashed onto rye toast. Nowadays, it’s about organic beef and steel cut oatmeal. My, how times have changed!


Haha, I know what you mean. But don’t you think it’s funny how we decide which part of the animal is and isn’t gross? Like why are the legs or rump OK on beef but other parts are icky? I know some people would say we shouldn’t eat the animals at all. I was a vegetarian for a while and got really sensitized to the idea of eating them, but I also got unhealthy and so switched back to being an omnivore. Jana


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