The Purple Pig

11 Jul

When talking to other people who frequent Chicago, one restaurant kept coming up: The Purple Pig. It’s tucked back from the street and if you blink you would definitely miss it but the one thing that draws your eye is the crowd of people waiting for a table.
My date and I walked through the wrought iron gates and found our way through the mass of people waiting. The entrance to the actual building seems like you are walking through a side door and not a front door. Inside is pure chaos at the hostess stand and not being acknowledged until we spoke up and ask how long the wait was, is typically not the way you want to start a first time restaurant visit. The space is very small so accommodating these massive crowds is impossible. The wait was an hour and a half but the bar was first come first serve. Call it luck but a couple was getting up right as we got to the bar.
As usual I asked the bartender/waiter, David, for his favorite items on the menu. His response, “Everything is good”. So I take it a step further. What is your personal favorite entree? His response, “That’s an unusual question”. This obviously rubbed me the wrong way. I simply tell him that it shouldn’t be an unusual question, he should be asked that multiple times a day. He says, “Fine. I like the octopus”. I appreciated his answer, finally, but we are eating at a restaurant name The Purple Pig. Why didn’t he suggest one of the many pork offerings?
We started off with the Asparagus Salad with arugula, endive and hazelnuts at $10. The salad was light and had the right amount of acidity. Perfect summer salad. Rated 8/10
Next, off my own gut feeling, I ordered the Pork Secreto with roasted red pepper, leeks, and pickled watermelon rind at $19. This was HEAVEN. Perfectly cooked and lean with a balance of sweet red pepper and bite of vinegar from the pickled watermelon rind. I needed a private moment. My date was so consumed with the flavors that I had to speed up my own personal eating in order to get my share of the dish. Rated 9.5/10 This dish is a MUST! HIGHLY RECOMMEND!
Lastly, we ordered the Octopus with Green Beans, Fingerling Potatoes & Salsa Verde at $26 off of the bartender’s suggestion. It came out in a very small bowl and the octopus was very apparently over cooked. When you eat octopus, it should almost break like crab meat and the texture is similar to a perfectly cooked scallop. Instead we received a more rubbery octopus. The salsa verde tasted more like a lemon sauce at the bottom of the bowl and the green beans and potatoes were good but nothing to write home about. I am still surprised that this was David’s favorite. Rated 6/10

All in all I would rate this restaurant a 7.5/10 and would return to try all of their porky goodness. Again, we learn that service is key to a guest having a good versus a GREAT experience.
The Purple Pig on Urbanspoon

One Response to “The Purple Pig”

  1. Deb bako July 11, 2013 at 6:31 pm #

    Oh my goodness that all looks and sounds yummy!

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