Berkeley - Porchetta Friday at Sea Salt?
- rworange Aug 14, 2008 05:01 PM
Anyone tried this? The picture on the website looks amazing and the description sounds mouth-watering ...
"The pig is catching on...Every Friday we get in a whole suckling pig--we bone it out, roll it up with herbs or sausage (or anything else that tastes good with pig. What doesn't?) and roast it until the skin gets brown and crispy. Then we slice a big piece and, for good measure, we fry an egg sunnyside up and throw that on top."
They also have Ragu of Bolinas Goat with egg tagliatelle and pecorino Romano.
We went last Friday. The meal was excellent but the porchetta was not that great.
Here is what we ate:
Grilled California Squid with cannellini beans and basil-almond pesto: delicious and satisfying
Heirloom Tomatoes with fresh mozzarella, pickled onions and siquil-P’ak- Fresh, tasty, excellent. The siquil-P’ak sauce was spicy with habanero and complex.
Bbq Eel ‘Banh Mi’ with cabbage slaw and housemade potato chips. It’s difficult to resist getting this sandwich whenever we go to Sea Salt. As usual it was amazing.
Porchetta- Gigantic piece of pork with fried egg on top. Looked absolutely delicious but was disappointing. The pork was very very dry and the fennel seasoning not particularly satisfying. The skin looked tasty but was leathery. The egg on top did not really add much to the dish.
My dining partner had the Porchetta at Sea Salt a couple months ago and I got to try it. It was nice - tender with a nice meaty pork flavor, and the seasonings were present but not overpowering - but it didn't blow me away. The portion size had no relationship with the reality of how much pork one human being can reasonably eat in one meal (or one day for that matter). I would order it again if I was in the mood but I wouldn't make a special point of going to Sea Salt just for the Porchetta.
Yesterday's was stuffed with sausage and topped with salsa verde, no egg, served with a mix of celery and celery root, maybe some other vegetables ($32). Very good, juicy, lots of different textures of meat, crispy skin. Definitely satisfied my pork craving. Huge servings, maybe a pound and a half? I polished mine off but the three people I was with each took enough home to make 2-3 lunches.
The eggplant appetizer was fabulous: fluffy, crunchy fried cubes in a creamy sauce of puréed eggplant with lebne, mint, and spices. The bluefin tuna tartare with avocado, watermelon, cilantro and lime was delicious but I'd like to try that fish plain sometime.
I have had the Porchetta here twice and loved it both times, although I asked for slightly different garnishes. Someone here had dry meat? Wow, that's the exact opposite of what I noticed about it. I have shared the plate both times because it's large, and also so I could order more appetizers, which I usually love.
I never save room for dessert here though-- it's usually too sweet, too gloopy or not seasoned properly.