the purple pig in chicago
Cheese, Swine & Wine.
That’s the tagline for The Purple Pig, a FABULOUS restaurant I visited tonight in Chicago. I figured that it had to be good since it featured three of my favorite things, and it didn’t disappoint.
I’m in Chicago for an AFP conference — holla fellow fundraisers — and had a long list of places to try while I’m here. I don’t think that even I can fit 17 meals into a three day trip but I’m trying my hardest!
The restaurant has a nice outdoor dining area that would be great in May when Chicago has the perfect patio weather. Unfortunately it’s currently 43 degrees outside so I opted to sit inside.
There are 8-10 two-top tables inside as well as two long communal tables. I ate at one of the communal tables between two of the friendliest groups of people.
Most of the plates are tapas-sized. There is also an extensive and reasonable wine list. Everything on the menu looked so good that I had trouble choosing so I asked the waitress for her opinion and she did not steer me wrong!
My first course was Shaved Brussel Sprouts with Pecorino Noce and Parmigiano-Reggiano. The shaved brussel sprouts were raw and tossed with the two cheeses and a light vinaigrette. The Pecorino Noce, which is slightly pungent sheep’s milk cheese that reminded me a bit of feta, was really what gave the salad such a great kick.
I had the Jamon Serrano with Oyster & Trumpet Mushrooms on Brioche with a Fried Duck Egg for my entree. It was essentially an open-faced sandwich. The ham was really salty, but not in an overpowering way, and tender. The mushrooms actually gave the dish most of it’s meatiness. And the duck egg…oh the wonderfulness of the fried duck egg. The yolk oozed perfectly over the whole sandwich.
The easiest choice was dessert. I had the Nutella Panini. Whoa! Expect to see a recreation of this on the blog soon. Nutella, marshmallow creme, and sliced bananas wee stuffed between two thick slices of bread, which i think was also brioche, and grilled. The flavors married perfectly and oozed out while I was eating it.
This just forced me to lick the plate. In public.
Side note: I drank (of course!) two great glasses of red wine but I can’t remember what it was called. It was a San Giovese.
The reason I can’t remember is probably because I also drank on the plane ride up this afternoon.
On that thought, I think I need to go to bed…
But before I do, I’m highly recommending The Purple Pig to anyone in Chicago!
(I took pictures of each dish but can’t load them from my iPhone for some reason…I’ll update this post with the food pics when I get back to H-town)