As promised, a review of Dralion is at the end of this post (hint: it was incredible). But first, I want to tell you about the most exciting events of the weekend.
On Saturday night, I saw Guster with my friend Lauren. They were amazing!
What, you can’t make out their faces? I blame the cell phone.
Then on Sunday evening, Bobby and I had an epic adventure in dining.
A few of Bobby’s co-workers have been raving about The Purple Pig. After receiving a gift certificate to dine there as one of our wedding presents, we knew they were serious. On Sunday, we bundled up and ventured down to Michigan Avenue for a late afternoon linner.
Upon entering the restaurant, we immediately understood the “cheese, swine and wine” sub-header. So, like any good customers would do, we immediately ordered a bottle of wine. It was the polite thing to do.
Chateau Lescalle. Smooth and slightly upcharged in the name of good taste.
When you look at the menu, it’s a bit overwhelming. There are so many small platters that we almost didn’t know where to start. But we came to eat (meat), so the Purple Pig Platter it was.
Imagine, if you will, a wooden pig that takes up almost half the length of a table. This is what they brought out for us! On the platter were assorted cured meats: Catalonian Fuet, Coppa, Testa, Sopressata, Lingua Agrodulce, Jamon Serrano and Prosciutto di Parma.
Alongside our meats, we also ordered three cheeses: Cabot Chedder, Podda and Gouda.
I proceeded to combine the meats and cheeses on slices of bread.
Each had its own unique salty flavor. The smaller, circular varieties tasted a lot like an upgraded salami, while the thinly sliced meats had more of a ham, prosciutto-esque taste that I definitely favored. As far as the cheeses go, I think you all can guess at the one I thought tasted best. (Hint: It’s one of my favorite puns because it’s just so good…a.) The chedder (interesting spelling, but that’s how it is on their site) was also tasty and the podda had a uniquely strong flavor that was best in smaller doses.
We also ordered a small bowl of marinated olives, which were delicious as always. I love olives. And salt.
But the highlight of the savory portion of our meal was one of the “Smears,” which was called Pork Neck Bone Gravy with Calabro Ricotta. Oh. My. Goodness. This was to-die for.
It was a very tomato base with a creamy ricotta accompaniment that, when “smeared” over toasted bread, made both of us exclaim, “Mmm.” Best recommendation we could have asked for and the highlight of our entire experience!
But we just couldn’t stop there. Though we successfully accomplished the “cheese, swine and wine” mission, dessert must also be served. It’s only fair.
Meet the Sicilian Iris. A ricotta and chocolate chip-filled fried brioche. In other words, pure sugar bliss.
This tasted like a mix of powdered sugar doughnut (a really, really good doughnut) and chocolate-vanilla glazed icing. Note to self: buy ricotta the next time you are at the grocery store. I had no idea it was so versatile on both the savory and sweet side of the menu!
We left The Purple Pig with full, happy bellies. Now we see why they have 2+ hour waits on weekends!
If the beginning of this post gave you any indication, Dralion was an absolute outstanding show and experience. I’ve been to three Cirque shows before this one and always leave with my mouth hanging open. This occasion was no different.
As with most other Cirque shows I’ve seen, they combine comic relief, outrageous circus stunts and talented singers and dancers for one knock-your-socks-off performance. It is absolutely worth the money (they have a variety of price ranges based on where you want to sit) and I definitely encourage you to check out their performance schedule to see if they are coming to a city near you.
Question: Do you use ricotta cheese in recipes? If so, share a link!
Clearly, I have a new found obsession.