Restaurant Review! – The Spotted Pig

Our first (of many!) restaurant reviews.  This particular place was recommended to us by some locals when we came out in August but we just didn’t have a chance to check it out until now.  It’s located at 314 W. 11th Street…which is a good 15 minute walk from our pad.

One of the few negatives is they DON’T take reservations.  Lucky for us, we got there around 6:30PM and were seated right away.  As we were finishing dinner, however, the place was packed and there was a line out the door (and this was on a Wednesday night!).

The place is relatively tiny on the first floor.  They also have an upstairs (which we didn’t get a chance to view).  As with most NY restaurants, “table for 2” means you get sat relatively quick but you’ll be at a small table, literally 12 inches away from the tables next to you.  So you’ve got to talk loud and inevitably you’ll hear a little of everyone else’s conversation.

The beer selection is decent.  I had a Pale Ale (closest thing they had to a wheat beer) and I can’t remember what type of beer Tara had but it was way better than mine (of course).

(This is Tara – It was a lager brewed in Brooklyn called Six Point.  Very tasty.  A little sweet smelling but then a hoppy taste – delicious!  Gotta try the local flavor, you know?)

The menu is one page and reprinted daily with the chef choices for that day.  My best description of the food style would be “high end bar food” with an obvious “pig” bent and British flair.  Some of the food names will require your waitress to interpret.

The appetizers are pretty cheap and not bad at all.  Tara and I shared:

The Marinated Olives 

The seeded olives are served in olive oil.  If you like olives, this a great dish.

Devils on Horseback

Bacon Wrapped Prunes with a Pear

Holy cow were these good.  They give you 5 bacon wrapped prunes with pear in the middle smothered with some type of glaze sauce!  It sounded a bit weird at first (who chooses prunes for an app unless you’re over 65 years of age?) but you know my motto — everything tastes good wrapped in bacon!

They had a bunch of other apps like devilled eggs and the crispy pig’s ear.  We didn’t venture to try anything else but we definitely will if we come again.

For the entrée, I went with what all the reviews I’d seen recommend and that was the Chargrilled Burger with Roquefort cheese and shoestring fries.  I’m not a fan of Bleu Cheese so I went sans Roquefort.  (This is Tara, again: I think it would’ve been 8,000 times better with the Roquefort, just saying.)  The bun starts it off right.  It’s lighty toasted with some type of buttery delight sauce.  There are NO condiments, tomato or lettuce necessary.  The price for this bad boy is steep ($17) but wow is it good!  It’s a bit salty so make sure you have a drink nearby.  Mine was prepared medium rare and it was to die for.  You’d think the fries would be just an “extra” thrown in there to compliment the burger.  Guess again….these competed with the burger for top honors.  The fries couldn’t have been cut any thinner which makes it feel as if you’re barely eating but I was definitely clearing the plate.  They were tossed with thinly sliced garlic and whole rosemary leaves for some extra flavor!

Look at that big, beefy beauty!

Tara got one of the daily specials: the white bean soup.  It wasn’t a broth and bean soup, but more of a creamy, pureed bean soup.  She said it had a slight spicy kick but she loved it.  If you know Tara, you know she loves her beans.  (Tara, again: I DO love beans!)

We weren’t going to have dessert but they had a few options that piqued our interest.  We went with the Popcorn flavored ice cream topped with caramel corn  sounded interesting.  I don’t know if I was expecting more but the ice cream was bland with really no flavor.  Luckily, the caramel corn made it worth ordering.

Overall, I give it 3 out of 4 stars.  The final bill was a bit much for the quantity of food and amount of options you’re given so I don’t foresee coming back for dinner.  I might, however, come back for the apps.  There were plenty to choose from and the price was just right.  So if you’re looking for a cool, trendy bar with some better than average beer selections and upscale appetizers, this would be the place.