Saturday, October 18, 2008

Mmmmm... Pork

In the past week I think I've eaten every conceivable part of a pig that can be prepared as food. If you haven't had the deep-fried bacon at Risque Cafe in Wrigleyville (served with a side of white bacon gravy) do yourself a favor and trade in your planned long lifespan for a serving. This is easily the best menu item they have, although the pulled pork (above) - while a bit on the dry side - is nothing to scoff at.

Meanwhile, I've been to the Publican on Fulton Market twice in the past week in preparation for a full review for Chicagoist I'm scheduling to run around Halloween. Jacy Wojcik, who we're bringing along slowly to help augment the food and drink beat while I get back to some new writers, has a first look at Paul Kahan's homage to the German beer hall, with dishes from executive chef Brian Huston.

Even with our banana republic economy it's been a banner year for restaurant openings around town, and the Publican is in my top five. If you do plan on checking it out, order the charcuterie plate, the pork rillette and the pork rinds. The latter is easily the most whimsical appetizer I've ordered this year. Too bad last night's crowd was a combination of post-collegiate sausage party, extremely high-maintenance women and their husbands who would make a clean break of them, if they thought they could get their penises back in the divorce settlement.

I'll use that as a seque and offer another round of advance congratulations to Scott and Erin, who are eloping in Vermont next weekend (although I do question the use of the term if everyone they know is heading there to get married). It's also fitting that they've set up a blog leading up to the wedding. They've even gone so far as to compile a soundtrack to their "eloping." Any soundtrack that includes "Cigarettes and Coffee" by Otis Redding and "If I'm on the Late Side" by the Faces is worth checking out.

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