500 N Michigan Ave
Chicago, IL 60611
After an early morning architecture boat tour of Chicago (which by the way was AMAZING), I went along with my sister, Nelson (@BiteMeFoodBlog), and a couple of friends, for some lunch at The Purple Pig (@thepigchicago). This award winning Chicago restaurant is located right on the Magnificent Mile, only steps away from the beautiful river where we had our boat tour. The pathway leading up to the restaurant entrance iis guarded by a large black gate, proudly displaying their motto: "Cheese, Swine, & Wine". And it really doesn't get much more straight forward than that. The restaurant is a collaboration of three well established Chicago chefs, bringing some of the best home made cheeses, pork dishes, and fine wines.
Entrance to The Purple Pig
Don't worry about them running out of wine!
Milk Braised Pork Shoulder with Mashed Potatoes ($10)
Pork Neck Bone Rillette & Mostarda ($11)
Jowl with Fried Hen Egg & Lemon Aioli ($11)
Eggplant Caponata with Goat Cheese ($11)
Turkey Leg Confit, Crispy Lentils, Treviso, Endive & Agro Dolce ($15)
Purple Pig Platter ($29)
So what to say about The Purple Pig? Well for one thing's for sure, don't come here if you don't like eating pork. This place serves up almost every single part of the creature: from the jaw to tail, and everything in between. Surprisingly, the most memeorable dish for me was acutally the Turkey Leg Confit. Fall of the bone tender with steam rushing out of it as you pull it apart. I find the Pork Neck Bone Rillette was also quite good, coming with a bottomless order of toasted bread to smear it on. And lastly, the Purple Pig Platter. Ah yes, the platter. A sample collection of house curred meats coming from every part of the piggy. I don't really remember which is which anymore, but I do remember it was delicious! This platter also marks the very first time I've ever had pig's testicles. Not my first choice of body part to consume, but if you try not to think about it, it actually doesn't taste all that bad! In fact, it was much fattier and buttery than the rest of the charcuterie. Who would've known?
Great service, intimate venue, and unique dishes. If you ever have a chance to visit Chicago, make sure you save some time and stomach to stop by for some cheese, swine, wine!