Review By: Stefanie Parks –
I headed to the West Village to meet with the founder of Burger Weekly, for what other than a great sounding burger. From what I had read about the Bone Marrow & Brisket Burger at Swine, it was not to be missed. So, naturally, I was pumped.
I walked into the restaurant (or more accurately, ran in, as it started pouring rain when I was two blocks away) and the first thing I saw was a pin ball machine in the upstairs bar area. I liked this place already.
The hostess led us downstairs to the dining area and after getting settled in and briefly browsing the menu (though I had clearly already gone through it in-depth before my arrival), we ordered a few beers and some snacks. All of the snacks on the menu sounded great. We decided that the potato chip nachos may be a little much for us, so we settled on the deviled eggs and the duck fat cashews. Both were unexpectedly spicy, but in the best way possible. The duck fat cashews tasted like they were coated in cumin, and though I liked the spice and these were great to pop in our mouths while deciding on the rest of our dinner, I probably could have done without these. The deviled eggs on the other hand, were one of the highlights of the meal for me. I love deviled eggs, pretty much order them whenever I see them on a menu, and these were some of the best, and also most different that I’ve had. I’m not sure what spice it was that was in them, but I loved it. There were three in the order and for $4, I thought this dish was a steal.
Next, we ordered the Fois Gras Torchon from the Charcuterie section of the menu. The menu online says that it comes with an apricot jam, but ours came with blackberry (I think it was blackberry), which was a welcomed substitute for me. The dish was served with several pieces of perfectly toasted bread, my first of which I slathered on the jelly first, followed by the fois gras. This was a mistake, as once the jelly was on there, it was extremely difficult to spread the fois gras, but luckily I learned my lesson for my next piece. I thought this dish was awesome. I don’t think I’ve ever had the fois gras/jelly combination, and I was definitely a fan. It kind of tasted like peanut butter and jelly to me, but better (if that’s possible). This dish also came with a ginormous serving of fois gras (though for $16, I guess this makes sense), and the waiter was happy to bring out more toast for us after we quickly devoured the first serving.
Next, for our entrees, we ordered the Bone Marrow and Brisket Burger (of course), which came with tarentaise cheese, caramelized onions, and crispy potato wedges and then the Pork Belly with sweet chili glaze and spicy pickled cabbage. We felt that while dining at a restaurant called Swine, we had to order something with pork, and I’m glad we did.
The pork belly was a pretty small portion, but it still tasted very decadent. The meat was tender, not fatty at all, and the sweet chili glaze made this dish for me. I’m not sure what the deal was with the spicy pickled cabbage though, which came on the side. I wasn’t really sure if it was meant to be eaten on the side, or with the pork belly, but I tried it both ways, and either way, I wasn’t a fan.
And then, the dish we had been waiting for (drum roll please…), the bone marrow and brisket burger, which we ordered medium rare. The first thing I noticed when it came out was the bun. Not only did it look delicious, it also looked like it could hold up to the burger, which is something I always look for in my buns. There’s nothing (ok, few things) I hate more than a bun that gets completely soggy and falls apart when you’re in the middle of trying to enjoy your burger. Yuck. This bun looked like it could stand up to the job.
After snapping a few photos, I took my first bite. Though I couldn’t specifically taste the bone marrow, I thought that this burger was perfectly cooked, the brisket was very tender and I loved the cheese and caramelized onions that came on top. The burger was indulgent, but also very simple, which is what I loved about it. Oh, and there was this sauce that came on the side (for the potatoes, I think), that was so great! It was little creamy, a little spicy, and pretty much everything you’d want in a good sauce. It was perfect for dipping and perfect for slathering on top of my burger. All in all, it was a great burger. Not mind shattering, not life-changing, but very solid.
Everything at Swine was pretty much on point. The service was great, the food was great, and all around, it was just a cool spot that I’d definitely recommend or go back to.
Make a reservation at Swine!