Sometimes you have it all together, and sometimes you forget to put mascara on one eye. I was having that kind of a disaster of a morning last Sunday and desperately needed some positive influences in my life. Luckily, I had brunch plans with fellow Bitches, Amanda and Shruti, both wonderful role models who energize me on the daily with their work ethics and easy-going attitudes.
We choose The Pig, near Logan Circle, and arrived sans reservation, so rather than wait 30 minutes or sit at the bar, we opted for a space on their patio, where we could people-watch. The 14th Street corridor was bustling with activity. Fellow brunchers, fit Bitches headed home from yoga, people walking their dogs—it’s definitely a place to see and be seen on a Sunday afternoon.
It was hot, hot, HOT outside, and since we were sitting in the sun, cold drinks were necessary. Our wonderful waiter, Louis, whipped up a champagne and citrus spritzer for Shruti and Amanda. It was refreshing and light, just what they needed. I went for the Berry Smash and ended up regretting it (again, I needed these people to make good choices for me). It was far too sweet and the mashed up berries floating on top made it unattractive and tough to sip.
Starving, I made an executive decision to put in an order of the face bacon and doughnuts immediately. Amanda and I had scoped out the menu ahead of time and were intrigued by both. The face bacon comes from the jowl of the pig and is topped with bourbon molasses mustard and maple syrup. It was incredibly tender and tasty. A definite hit with us.
The pork fat polish doughnuts oozed with cream cheese filling and were topped with gooey bacon. They were a little too sweet for our liking; we Bitches eat a lot of doughnuts and these did not impress.
After apologizing profusely to Shruti, our resident vegetarian, for bringing her to a restaurant all about the pork products, we dug into The Little Pig, a charcuterie plate with pickles, olives, fruit, mustard, pesto, and bread.
Shruti loved the pesto, and Amanda and I liked the prosciutto. The only things we didn’t love were the lox spread and the bologna. If this is what they consider “little” I shudder to think what the Big Pig looks like. It was massive, and we simply couldn’t finish the plate without nixing the room we were saving for our entrees.
Amanda ordered the pork cutlet BLT, as she was intrigued by the unique twist on the classic sandwich. The large sandwich adds a pork cutlet and features thousand island dressing instead of mayonnaise, all topped off with aged gouda, and, of course, bacon.
While the sandwich was quite tasty, the pork was a bit tough to chew, so she ended up eating the ‘wich without it. She was surprised by this, being at a restaurant where pork is the specialty. That didn’t stop her from digging into her mound of French fries, which had just enough crunch and salty goodness.
Shruti opted for an heirloom tomato salad. They were topped with yellow wax beans, red onion, feta, za’ater, and herbed buttermilk. It was light, fresh, and savory—just what she needed after a long night of indulging. She also went for a side of homemade mac and cheese, which was gooey, cheesy and delicious. We loved the breadcrumbs on top, which added some crunch.
A note to our vegetarian followers: Shruti remarked that she was surprised that a place called The Pig had as many vegetarian options as they do. (We also said so in our first review.) The menu also offered a few other items including a frittata with a number of fresh veggies. As a warning though, she’d advise other fellow vegetarians to read the ingredients carefully. One wouldn’t expect doughnuts to contain bacon!
I was pleasantly surprised to see a smoked sockeye salmon board on the menu, complete with an everything bagel from Bullfrog Bagels. Since I always crave bagels, and Bullfrog makes the best in town, I was tempted to just spread on some cream cheese and call it a day. But I fashioned myself a delicious bagel sammie; with house-smoked salmon, heirloom tomato, cucumber, and bacon to boot. My only complaint is that it was kind of hard to eat.
Overall, we had a solid meal at The Pig, with extremely attentive service. We enjoyed the unique twists on pork products that we wouldn’t normally try at any other restaurant. And we love that the menu changes every weekend based on what’s available at the EatWell natural farm, so you can feel good about getting the best, farm-fresh produce.
The Bitches Say: B+. The Pig’s “snout to tail” mantra does not disappoint the pork-lovers amongst us; and the options for vegetarians impressed as well. A definite “must-try” for adventurous eaters in the District.
1320 14th St N.W.
The Pig serves brunch Saturdays and Sundays