Invariably, a visit to The Iberian Pig includes a variety of rich, indulgent dishes, most of which are thankfully small portions. The Decatur hot spot was our first stop on a chauffeured evening out in a Cooper Global limo with LC’s cousin PC and his wife L.
Dark wood and warm lighting create a rustic atmosphere perfect for enjoying chef Chad Crete’s Spanish-inspired tapas. We were seated upstairs where an abstract mural provided a colorful backdrop. Our server started us off with cocktails, a Moscow mule for LC and a caipirinha for me, a drink I fell in love with in Brazil made with cachaca, sugar, and muddled limes.
Our decadent meal began with B.W.D., bacon wrapped dates stuffed with manchego and walnuts served on a romesco sauced plate, and an artisanal cheeseboard of manchego and cana de oveja, both made with sheep’s milk, served with toasted bread and accompaniments.
We delved deeper into the tapas menu with two orders of vieras, pan seared scallops with butternut squash puree, morcilla and sunchoke hash, and hidalgo croquetas, little fritters stuffed with Spanish hams and cheeses. We enjoyed every delectable bite.
Nearly every review of The Iberian Pig mentions their amazing pork cheek tacos, yet somehow I had managed to dine there many times without trying them…until now. four mini taco shells are deep fried for crunch, then filled with pulled pork, corn salsa, avocado puree, and arugula. They were fantastic enough to consider a second order, but we already had a few more dishes coming, so we ordered another round of drinks instead.
Noticing we had nothing green, L ordered a salad, a lovely and bright composition of butter lettuce, marcona almonds, griottes cherries (macerated in brandy), shaved manchego, caramelized parsnips, and crispy shallots with champagne vinaigrette…a simple salad with unexpectedly complex flavors.
We saved the heaviest tapas for last…the mac ‘n’ cheese made with garganelli pasta tossed in manchego pork belly cream, then baked with crunchy panko on top, paired with huevo con trufa, a cast iron skillet of slow roasted pork cheeks with a poached egg and black truffles, served with rustic bread. The two dishes were wonderful together.
There was little room for dessert but LC insisted we have some churros, sprinkled with cinnamon sugar. The Iberian Pig puts their twist on the traditional Spanish doughnuts by serving them with chili-infused chocolate for dipping.
Our bellies were full as we headed out into the night for more adventure.
121 Sycamore Street 404-371-8800