Bacon Unwrapped

Friday, July 27, 2007

Rustico Bacon

Earlier this week, I had the pleasure of dining with a couple girlfriends at Rustico Restaurant in Alexandria, Va (fellow blogger Matt is a chef there). Rustico is known best for their beer selection, but they also have a very creative and interesting menu. In addition to reading about the restaurant on Matt's blog, I've also read a few good reviews recently that happened to mention some things they were doing with pork. So across the river I went.

I decided to make my entire meal pork themed (surprise). For the appetizer, I split the chicken liver and bacon club with a friend. I'm personally not a huge fan of chicken liver, and the portion was a pretty decent size so I'm definitely glad I shared it, but it was actually quite good. Of course the strip of bacon helped.

For my main course I chose 4 items from their Mosaic menu. The Mosaic menu is a series of small plates grouped by food type (ie pork, peppers, beef, mac & cheese, etc) and each grouping has three options. You can either do an entire flight of one type of food or you can mix and match. I chose to do the pork flight along with one selection from the mac and cheese group. The pork flight was comprised of an Edwards Tender Ham and Bandage Cheddar grilled cheese sandwich, Nora Mills grits and fried pork belly grillades, and crispy pig trotters with garlicky mashed potatoes. My mac and cheese selection was made with house cured pancetta and peas. Everything was delicious. The pork belly was just the right texture and was served on a bed of creamy grits. The ham sandwich was served on fresh toasted bread that was grilled to perfection. By my favorite of the three pork dishes were the crispy trotters served on a bed of mashed potatoes. It had a lovely savory taste. I ate every single last crumb.

We also had a couple fantastic desserts, including a chocolate Guiness cupcake. Chocolate, Guiness and just can't go wrong with that combo.

On the whole, Rustico was an excellent pork-themed dining experience and definitely worth crossing the Potomac for.


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  • Heather, I am so happy you decided to come across the river to another of my restaurants! I am just sorry I wasn't there to see you, seeing as how I am the opeing chef, and usually head home once dinner gets going. But most importantly, I am thrilled you enjoyed the food! The pork trotters ARE good. We also use the "stock" that we create from the cooking of the trotters in our pork ragu that we serve over papparadelle noodles. You'll have to come in and try that sometime at lunch, along with our "BLT" sandwich!

    By Blogger Matt, at 1:53 PM  

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