Author Topic: Orlando  (Read 3657 times)

Offline GabrielsDad

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 214
  • Back to who I was
    • Email
Re: Orlando
« Reply #15 on: March 05, 2010, 10:37:44 PM »
3 words. The Ravenous Pig.

Great spot. 3 nights here, 2 dinners there.

Posting from my iPhone now but I will repost with details when I can get computer acess. Suffice it to say that it's a fantastic place with cool folks, a great vibe, a nice wine list and well chosen (but short) American craft beer list, and outstanding food.

Definitely the coolest thing going in Orlando. 
There are things you do because they feel right & they make no sense & they make no money & it may be the real reason we are here: to love each other & to eat each other's cooking & say it was good.
                                               - Brian Andreas

Offline GabrielsDad

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 214
  • Back to who I was
    • Email
Re: Orlando
« Reply #16 on: March 08, 2010, 09:52:22 PM »
Hmmm...  Can't seem to be able to modify my previous post...

So here's the deal on the Pig, for anyone interested.  It's definitely a modern American gastro-pub, with drink friendly food, an eclectic wine and beer list (all American craft), and some creative cocktails - including bacon infused bourbon.  A focus on local ingredients, with a lot of house-made meats.  A very well timed concept, with the right feel and price point for where the economy is.  And with really tasty food.

Did 2 solo meals here, Wednesday and Saturday nights, around 8ish (couldn't find anyone else crazy enough to drive the 30 minutes from our conference center near Disney).  Half the restaurant is reservation only, and half is first-come, first-serve with booths, tables, and a bar.  First night couldn't get a seat at the bar, so secured a table and asked the server to have the chef pick three courses for me, and pair them with whatever he thought I should drink.  A few minutes later, out comes the Rogue smoked blue cheese tart, topped with heirloom toms in a balsamic caramel, with a really nice fresh herb side salad.  The flavors on this really popped, and the salad provided a nice fresh counterpoint to the rich tart.  The balsamic caramel rocked, and it paired really nicely with the pinot they selected.  Second course was the tuna carpaccio, topped with a salad of thinly sliced fennel, roasted baby beets, hazelnuts and herbs.  A few too many hazelnuts, but otherwise a winning dish.  Very fresh, and paired quite well with the glass of champagne, though it also worked beautifully with my last swallow of pinot.  Last dish was the standout of the night - grilled wild boar chops atop Anson's Mill polenta cake with sauteed wild-mushrooms.  What a fantastic dish!  Smokey, rich, the pork perfectly cooked.  Best pairing of the night with a brown ale - might have been Smuttynose? - with great caramel notes and a taste of wood that worked oh so well with the boar.  All of these dishes were from the menu, but it was great to see what the chef wanted me to eat.

Second night I chose to order three things I hadn't had on the first visit.   This time I was lucky enough to snag a seat at the bar where Larry hooked me up.  I ordered the food, he picked the drinks.  Great bartender, sporting a rocking handle-bar stache.  We chatted about Atlanta restaurants, and the food scene in Orlando in general.  Terrific guy.  Dinner started with the Farmer salad, a HUGE bowl of really fresh greens, with lots of house-made bacon, brioche croutons, topped with a poached egg in a caesar vinaigrette.  What an amazing salad, it was as good as it sounds.  Salty, rich, eggy, fresh from the greens.  Yum.  Paired great with a terrific Southampton white ale.  Course number 2 was grilled octopus over chickpea cioppino with green olive aioli.  The cioppino was a nice tomato broth studded with chickpeas, and the octopus was really tender.    Another solid dish, paired with an Italian barolo.  A bit unexpected, as I would have thought perhaps a white, but it worked great with the meaty octopus.  Last course was the homemade cavatelli with braised rabbit and charred tomatoes, which went great with the Treana viogner.  Perfectly al dante pasta, and the rabbit was great. A terrific finish to a second great meal.

Other than the great food, and really nice folks, I loved that they were willing to think outside the box on what to pair with what, and it all worked great.  Progressing from beer to red to white may seem unusual, but all the pairing were spot on.  I also appreciated the great balance in the food.  Every rich dish had something bright or acidic to counter-balance, and nothing was one-note.  And the freshness of the ingredients was obvious.  This is a truly great place, with staff and chefs who clearly know what they are doing.  Very much in the spirit of some of the best places in Atlanta. 
There are things you do because they feel right & they make no sense & they make no money & it may be the real reason we are here: to love each other & to eat each other's cooking & say it was good.
                                               - Brian Andreas

 

Powered by EzPortal
anything
anything
anything