One of the greatest things about New York is that you’re constantly meeting people from all walks of life, from finance folks to digital marketers to fashion designers to comedians. The list goes on. When two rooms in our apartment opened up, my close friend K and I interviewed 30-40 candidates to find the perfect roommates for our home. We met so many different people doing all sorts of things. One candidate claimed that he was the guy who snaps the clapperboard and says, “Cut!”, and worked for the recently released Hunger Games movie in Europe. Another candidate worked at an architecture firm and was helping develop the new building plans for the Whitney Museum. In the end, we had to narrow it down to two lovely roommates and we could not be happier with our decision as well as the time and effort we put into finding the right people.
One of those roommates is E, who is the line chef at the Michelin star-restaurant, The Spotted Pig. As described on Google, it is a “no-reservations Village eatery drawing throngs for European-inspired meals & celebrity sightings”. In fact, E told me that Sam Smith dined at his restaurant last week.
Since my friends flew into town to celebrate my birthday, we finally had an occasion to go out for fine dining. So, naturally, we headed over to E’s restaurant.
There is no sign at the front door to explicitly show you’re at the correct location; only a spotted pig hanging over the corner of the restaurant. From the get-go, you can already sense the fun and humorous vibe. When you enter, the dimly-lit ambiance is decorated with pigs galore!
The restaurant has two stories, both with a bar to entertain patrons while they wait for a table.
Luckily, as E’s guests, we got VIP treatment and didn’t have to wait at all. :) Roommate perks! But, that wasn’t the end of it… We got to try so many different dishes, complimentary of the chef himself.
Oysters w/ Mignonette. I’m not really a fan of raw oysters, but I had to try it since E had kindly sent it over to us. I was pleasantly surprised by how well the mignonette complimented the oysters. Though, I will never get over the texture of slimy raw oysters.
The Deviled Eggs were delish! They had a hint of sea salt that was splendid.
I’m very glad that E had given us this dish because I don’t think I would have tried it otherwise. The Pork Rillette with Pickles & Mustard was awesome! For those who do not know (as I didn’t either), pork rillette is a preparation of meat that is similar to pâté. The meat is cubed or chopped, salted heavily and cooked slowly in fat until it is tender enough to be easily shredded, and then cooled with enough of the fat to form a paste.* It had an incredibly rich flavor without too much of the graininess and mineral-like taste from normal pâté.
E has mentioned before that the Apple Salad with Toasted Walnuts & Mrs. Quicke’s Cheddar is one of the favorites. I can see why. It is a very simple preparation, but a fresh break from the richness and strong flavors from other savory plates.
I loved that the Shoestring Fries came in a mountain and could be easily shared amongst our group of six. The Butter Roasted Turnips with Garlic was good. Though, anything that has been roasting in garlic and butter will never disappoint. I had to look this up online since we could not figure out what type of vegetable was in this dish. The texture was not familiar and still does not correspond to what you would associate with turnips. The Brussels Sprouts were superb! Though, I’m pretty biased since I am particularly fond of roasted Brussels Sprouts.
Sheep’s Milk Ricotta Gnudi with Brown Butter & Sage // Seared Mackerel with Sweet Potato Mash & House Cured Pancetta — My other roommate B seemed to really enjoy her gnudi dish. The pancetta in the latter dish overpowered the entreé, but the sweet potato mash helped neutralize the saltiness.
Pork Shoulder Pot Pie with Arugula. The flakiness of the pie was just done perfectly.
Grilled Skirt Steak with Sautéed Spinach, Crispy Potatoes & Béarnaise. This was the star of the show. From all of our entreés, this was a favorite amongst our group. We did not order the burger, which this place is known for, since we had heard mixed reviews about the dish. Though, it may be worth trying out next time anyway.
After an amazing meal, we were thoroughly impressed by every dish and thoroughly stuffed! Of course, E did not cease to pull every stop. What’s a birthday without dessert?
Banoffee (Banana + Coffee) Pie (featured picture) and Pecan Pie!
Overall, everyone really enjoyed their food and time at The Spotted Pig! MAJOR THANKS AND PROPS TO E FOR COOKING ALL THESE AMAZING DISHES!
Some final notes: I will warn that the prices are pretty steep for the amount and type of food that you’re getting. As for Michelin star? I may question that a bit. The food was great, not spectacular to earn that Michelin star. No worries to all you readers who are gasping at my critical review — E knows that it’s only constructive criticism of the Michelin star rating system in the States. Either way, you will definitely enjoy great food at this popular restaurant (and possibly a celebrity spotting). Check it out for yourself and let us know what you think!
The Spotted Pig
314 West 11th Street,
New York, NY 10014