Cheese, swine and wine
I went to a fantastic restaurant in Chicago last night. The Purple Pig (500 N Michigan Avenue) had an igenious menu of simply prepared Mediterranean food with a huge pork influence. Jewish readers look away now.
The Purple Pig opened earlier this year in a spot that was once a UPS office, which was hard to believe. The restaurant is the creation of Mario Batali prodigy Jimmy Bannos Jr, whose Dad is of the Heaven on Seven fame, known for it’s New Orleans style food. There wasn’t a gumbo in sight though here, just Pigs Ear (photo), which tasted, well like fried chicken.
Bannos joined us at our table and offered his insight into his ‘Cheese, Swine and Wine’ tagline as well as some of his dishes such as Pork Saltimbocca with Rainbow Swiss Chard, Milk Braised Pork Shoulder with Mashed Potatoes and Roasted Bone Marrow with Herbs, served on chunky toasted bread and he was clearly in his own kind of heaven.
As was I, the space was brilliantly conceived as was the tapas style menu, beguiling wine list and range of unusual beers. Bannos was engaging and likeable, and the food experience was unforgettable.