Manhattan | New York City | Road Trip Eats & Restaurants | Snapshots | The NYC Essentials

Snapshots: The Spotted Pig

Today I’m introducing a new semi-regular feature on Good. Food. Stories. Inspired by the {Photo Friday} feature on Food Nouveau, written by my lovely friend Marie Asselin, I’ll be periodically presenting mini photo essays featuring snapshots from my food travels. There’s so much to see beyond what’s on the plate, and no matter where I go, I’m always shooting; why not go a little more in-depth with the personality and quirks of the restaurants and bars I visit?

First up: The Spotted Pig, in New York’s Greenwich Village. Before the restaurant expanded to the upper floors of its building, you could be waiting hours for a stool at the tiny gastropub where chef April Bloomfield cooks her soulful, simple food. I used to get around this problem by stopping by late in the afternoon for oysters, fries, pickles, and sundry nibbles, and it’s still my favorite time of day to visit The Pig.

spotted pig, new york
It’s pig-o-rama inside the restaurant, with porky paraphernalia papering the walls, hanging from the ceiling, and lining the shelves. (There’s a good deal of vegetable and seafood art, too, though for the full scope of oceanic tchotchkes, head over to the John Dory.) Wouldn’t these pig-stamped transoms be so cool in a rustic cabin? Preferably with a fire pit in its yard for full-on pig roasts?

spotted pig gnudi
In her cookbook A Girl and Her Pig, Bloomfield says of the gnudi:

One day I swear I’m going to take gnudi off the menu at The Pig. We’ll probably end up closing down, because it’s one of the most popular items on the menu. Yet it might be worth the risk—it’s been seven years of sheer hell making these little things.

I’d still come to The Pig if she ever followed through on her threat, but selfishly, I hope it never happens: these butter-drenched ricotta balls are a New York institution at this point, up there with Peter Luger steaks and Pearl Oyster Bar lobster rolls.

spotted pig bath chap sandwich
Though Bloomfield is a nose-to-tail chef and doesn’t shy away from British delicacies like this “bath chap” sandwich—featuring smoked, braised, fried pig cheek and jowl—it’s the details like a tangy mustard dressing on the bun that keep the richness in check and leave dishes in perfect balance.

spotted pig shoestring fries
They come with the critically-lauded Roquefort burger, but you can always get a big bowl of the shoestring fries, studded with rosemary and golden garlic slices, as a side. Or as a meal with a smorgasbord of bar snacks or vegetable plates, if that’s what you’re feeling. Exercise your best pincer claw to snag big mouthfuls of the crispy straws.

spotted pig bar, new york
Even at the bar, little porcine details like this origami pig hanging out with the restaurant’s liquor license and extra bar napkins make me smile. It’s like playing “Where’s Waldo?” with pigs—and you’ll always win.

The Spotted Pig, 314 W 11th St., New York. 212-620-0393. No reservations.

FTC Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Good. Food. Stories. receives a minuscule commission on all purchases made through Amazon links in our posts.

Similar Posts

8 Comments

    1. Yes! Their vegetable options are just as insanely flavorful as their meat dishes – veg-heads totally won’t be left out in the cold there. (The Breslin, on the other hand…)

Comments are closed.