Tuesday, February 3, 2015
The People's Pig: Top notch BBQ for the masses
Recently we had the pleasure of trying The People's Pig, a BBQ joint on N. Williams in Portland. The People's Pig began its life as a food truck, but recently moved into their new brick and mortar digs a few blocks down from the heart of the N. Williams food scene. Once Fooditka got wind of this development she just had to try it, and I just had to tag along. I'll keep this review short and to the point. Here goes: The People's Pig is really good, and you should go there.
Fine, I'll elaborate.
The restaurant is on N. Williams a few blocks south of Fremont. It is a simple no frills kind of place, but that does not detract from the experience. As soon as you walk in, you're greeted with the telltale aroma of delicious BBQ that makes your mouth water. The space is not very large, big enough to sit and enjoy your food without feeling crammed in. There are several tables, a few booths, and a counter to sit at, and the menu items and specials are clearly displayed above the cash register. They have a full bar as well, with a variety of cocktails if you're so inclined.
There are a few main menu items to choose from, including pork shoulder, ribs, smoked fried chicken, and BBQ pork. You can get these items as sandwiches, or as plates with one or two sides. There are a variety of sides including black eyed peas, collard greens, coleslaw, potato salad, and hot links. You can also get any of the plates as a salad for the same price. The large plate with 2 sides goes for about $12, so we each got our own. However, the portions are very generous and we ended up taking a bunch home and eating it a few days later.
Pork Shoulder - Fooditka ordered the pork shoulder with potato salad and coleslaw as her sides. The platter also comes with a good sized hunk of hot, toasty bread and some BBQ sauce for dipping the meat. It was all delicious, especially the pork; tender in the middle, chewy towards the edges, smoky and beautiful with just the right amount of salty, tangy flavor. The sides were top notch as well, especially the potato salad.
Smoked Fried Chicken - Smoked chicken; great. Fried chicken; also great. Smoked fried chicken; redonkulous. The texture of the meat was just incredible, with the crispy battered outside giving way to the slight resistance of the smoked chicken skin. The inside of the meat was moist and delectable, as all of that flavor is locked in there beneath the two outer layers. For my sides I picked the black eyed peas and the hot links. I guess that's kind of cheating as I got two delicious meats on my platter instead of one, but good for me. The sausages were as well executed as the rest of the meats, with a perfect outer texture to complement the tasty inside. They were a bit spicy, as their name suggests, but not too bad. The black eyed peas were great as well, and in case I felt I wasn't too stuffed to walk out of there upright, the beautifully toasted hunk of bread cured me of that notion.
Service and Cost:
It's an order at the counter kind of place, so there isn't traditional waiter or waitress service, but the people working there were super friendly and our food came right out. As I mentioned before, the portions are very substantial; most likely, the two large plates with two sides each would have been enough for 4 people to share comfortably. Even still, we probably got out of there for about $15 per person including a beer and the tip, and we had plenty of leftovers for dinner later in the week.
The People's Pig - 3217 N. Williams Ave Portland, OR 97227