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Ravenous Pig / Orlando

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I'm glad that I came across the listing and discussion about 'The Ravenous Pig' that's located in Winter Park. My wife and I were in that area this past Saturday, we stopped in for a meal and we're glad we did! This establishment is a real winner from start-to-finish and worth a visit.

We started off by ordering from the Pub Menu. We ordered the Lobster Tacos and the Pork Ribs. The Lobster Tacos were great in concept and were a feast for the eyes! However, they weren't as tasty as they looked. The lobster meat was fried and rather tasteless. The ribs on the otherhand were nothing less than spectacular. They were properly smoked, pulled gently from the bone and were covered with a home-made BBQ sauce that was simply spectacular. They were accompanied by what I would call a "spaghetti cole slaw" that was overly sauced but was tangy and tasty. We also ordered 'Ugly Ends' which are gruyere biscuits that were flaky, buttery and simply devine.

For our lunch we shared a Smoked Chicken Club sandwich that was also a real treat. It featured grilled bacon, avocado, frise and tomato aioli. The chicken was smoked but not overly so and was extremely tender. It was a great choice that we totally enjoyed eating.

They have a very nice beer and wine list with many choices. They feature what I would label as "small batch beers". We tried the Avery "White Rascal" from Boulder, Colorado and the Gordash Brewing "Holy Mackerel" from Melbourne, FL and both were full-bodied and delicious. Their wine list was well-picked and well-priced.

For dessert we had the "pig tails" and this was a hit. This house-specialty employs deep fried dough sticks, covered with sugar and accompanied with a molten chocolate dipping sauce. Off the charts flavor!

The servers were very young, polite and knowledgeable. They work as a team but don't overwhelm and always pleasant.

If you're in the Orlando / Winter Park area - The Ravenous Pig is a can't-miss establishment.

EMac

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  1. Sounds like a place I'll have to try some time. I think I hear a friend talking about it. Is it also known as a "Gastro Pub"? Also fun to hear that they have churros for dessert, because that's basically what it sounds like the pig tails are. And no not the long churros you get at the fair, but the authentic stuff you get from the cafes in Barcelona, Spain and such. I'm sure they are delicious.

    1 Reply
    1. re: frienetic

      This is the place called the "Gastro Pub".....And yes...they're basically "churros"....and the dark chocolate dipping sauce is sickly good!!....It was a top-notch place....Hope to get back there someday soon.....

      Emac

    2. I started the original Ravenous Pig thread a few months back, after visiting there during their first week in business. I loved the place, but haven't had a chance to return yet. I'm glad to hear they are still doing great.

      10 Replies
      1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

        Do you know if they are still doing the whole suckling pig on Saturdays you mentioned in the OP? If so, would you mind describing style a bit (is it marinated, basted, served with bbq sauce or mojo, etc.)? I love pig and this place sounds like its worth a trip. Thanks for putting on radar and in advance for any further info.

        Thanks.

        1. re: eatnbmerry

          I haven't been back since my first dinner there, so I only heard about the pig roasts. They have them on Saturday afternoons once a month, usually during a time I'm working. I believe a few posters from Chowhound have been there, so hopefully they can weigh in with more information. The restaurant is definitely worth a trip, though!

          1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

            TY.

            I read your original post salivating from the name alone I must admit. Obviously can go back and read those recs again but wondered what has endured the test of time in your opinion? Not having been there for a while what dish do you most vividly recall/would like to have again you know what I mean?

            1. re: eatnbmerry

              Interesting question, and well worth a thoughtful answer.

              The truth is, I remember it vividly, after so many meals all blend together or fade away. I don't even have to review my original post. The giant ribeye for two was amazingly tender and juicy, perfectly rare like I like it, and was easily in the top two steaks I've ever had in my life. The tomato tart it came with was like nothing I've ever had before. Granted, I'm not an expert on high-end fine dining like some folks here, but you could eat one of those at every meal and never tire of it. Finally, the lamb mezze appetizer was a must-have -- fresh lamb ribs and meatballs, with a tomato relish and tzaziki sauce. Heck, if they tripled the size, I'd consider ordering that for the main course.

              I had a splitting headache that night, but I still remember it fondly. I felt like an adventurer, trying this brand-new place on a date with my girlfriend (who treated me!), AND being the first one to report back to the message board about it. Hopefully the Pig will stick around Orlando forever, but it already sounds like they're enjoying great success. I look forward to a return trip, and I thank LargeLife for bringing talk of the Pig back to the forefront in a new thread.

              1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                TY so much for the thoughful response.

                It all sounds amazing, especially since like you say it's been a while now. Definitely sounds like a memorable meal that this hound (like you don't think of myself as expert on high-end fine dining) will surely appreciate. I think I am going to plan for a weekend when they do the pig so maybe I can have a little taste of that along with that ribeye you mentioned and the tart and the mezze. OK, they may have to roll me away, won't be the first or hopefully last time :).

                TY again BBVL and LL too for reminding me of this piggy heaven.

                TC

                1. re: eatnbmerry

                  I'm just glad this site exists for foodies to find about great places and The Ravenous Pig is wonderful eating adventure. And the folks at TRP know that chowhound.com has spoken positively about their establishment. I work in Miami Mon - Thurs but spend my weekends in Ft. Pierce and TRP is about 1:45 from there so that's not too far of a reach to drive for something great on a Saturday afternoon once or twice per year. Can't wait to get back up that way and try other items. I think it would be great to go there with friends so everyone can try different dishes and share around the table! I was also very impressed that they carry a California sparkling wine from the Schramsburg winery - that showed me they did their homework. I was also very impressed with the area that it's in as it will remind some of Coral Gables or even perhaps Coconut Grove. There may be another eatery in that area of interest as well. Take the GPS though, we didn't think getting there was all that easy! (LOL!).

                  Emac

                  1. re: LargeLife

                    I grew up in Miami, and Winter Park (where TRP is in Orlando) definitely reminds me of Miami's Coral Gables. There are plenty of nice restaurants in Winter Park, mostly located up and down scenic Park Avenue, which is super-nice for walking on a pretty day. You may have seen a recent thread about the brand-new Cheese Shop on Park Avenue, which I believe is the first dedicated cheese shop to open in our area.

                    1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                      One thing about TRP that I haven't seen metioned yet is lunch! I went for lunch over the holidays and had a fanastic Chicken Sandwich with Kumkwat jam! It was soooo yummy!

                2. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                  Sad to report they have stopped offering the tomato tarte. I asked and they said that a significant portion of people were leaving it on the plate. imo It's a case of dumbing down the food for the masses. They did a similiar thing with the "Hot Chocolate" dessert, reducing the amount of the chllie powder to make it less spicy. A restaurant has to do what it has to do I suppose.....

                  I agree with the assessment on the lobster taco's, missing some flavor. But many people rave over them.

                  Overall it is still a great plane to eat.

                  1. re: herbert1

                    Too bad! Lou's rec of tart had stirred my appetite.

                    Have to admit that I don't like to hear "dumbing down the food for the masses" and "A restaurant has to do what it has to do I suppose....." because it is usually a sure fire road to mediocrity from my past experience.

                    Lets hope that's not the case here, at least before I get to try :).

                    TY for update too.

        2. I keep meaning to hit this place, but now that I'm hearing the lobster tacos were tasteless, I'm on the fence as I was looking for something festive on the fish side. (I can grab a nice salad just about anywhere.)

          I've checked the menu out online so I'll ask those that have dined there- worth a visit if you are NOT a meat eater? I enjoy fish and seafood but don't eat chicken, pork, beef or meat based soups/stocks.

          Any input would be appreciated!

          TIA!

          8 Replies
          1. re: winechic

            I'm the one who wrote the review to start this thread....It's true...the lobster tacos weren't great...but after that is was ALL great!....For lunch they have a Mahi Sandwich...Ham Croque Madame Sandwich..Steak Frites...Soup Avgolemeno (chicken, lemon, dill).....Because you don't eat chicken, pork beef or meat based soup / stocks...TRP might not be for you....And that's OK.....We're all different.....But I'm pretty confident that you would love that Mahi sandwhich....We tried different things there and they were all very, very good.....Buen Provecho!

            1. re: winechic

              Probably not worth the visit.....your choices are pasta or pretzels!

              1. re: winechic

                TRP has excellent snapper, cod, skate wing, raw bar (oysters), mussels, etc. Things change frequently, so I'd call that day to get the low-down on the fish available that day.

                And as an aside to the "dumbing down" discussion, I think it's probably more a matter of food cost than dumbing down. If food is just going in the trash, they aren't making a profit on it. I work in the restaurant industry, and it's always a struggle to balance cutting edge food with what the public will embrace. I'm sure they want to--and do--make creative and interesting food, but if folks aren't eating it, it is poor business to keep making it.

                1. re: melodie

                  dumbing down the food wont happen. we are trying to keep it fresh and sseasonal. check back for the tomato tart in the summer. the menu changes daily but there are always alot of good seafood options.

                  1. re: chefnick

                    Thanks for the personal note! Can't wait to try your food, hopefully, way before summer (the tart will have to wait for a return visit then). BTW, are you still doing the whole pig roast on weekends? Saturday or Sunday? or Both?

                    Thanks again.

                    1. re: eatnbmerry

                      I was just at TRP last night. For those of you who have missed it or haven't tried it yet, the tomato tart is back on with the rib eye!

                      And, to eatnbmerry, the pig roasts happen the first Saturday of every month. You can get on their mailing list by e-mailing to info@theravenouspig.com You'd better believe I'm on that list:-)

                      1. re: melodie

                        the tomato tart is back on with the rib eye!

                        Great....

                        1. re: melodie

                          I was there last night as well.

                          It was great, as usual. I asked our server if we could purchase the tomato tart separate from the ribeye (we had pretty much munched our way through the entire pub menu already - so eating an entire ribeye wasn't in the cards) Apparently the chef said there weren't enough extra to be able to do that.

                          I know I'm probably asking for too much, but I'd like to request the tomato tart be available a la carte. I'd gladly make it worth their while to do so!!