Long, long ago, Manhattan was an oyster town, and when the oysters disappeared, New Yorkers commenced gobbling great amounts of beefsteak. In the last decade or so, however, the city has been gripped by a new culinary obsession. Here, ten reasons why New York is the new pig capital of the USA.
1. Braised pork belly at Daniel: When it’s on the menu and the storied French chef is on his game, there’s no greater pig dish in town.
2. Suckling pig at Eleven Madison Park: The new chef, Daniel Humm, cooks his porker in its own fat, and condenses it, crackly skin and all, into the pig lover’s savory equivalent of a candy bar.
3. Pork scrapple at Telepan: Bill Telepan serves this Pennsylvania Dutch country delicacy in the proper farmhouse style, with a single delicately poached egg.
4. Suckling pig at Boqueria: The city’s nearest equivalent to the great Iberian specialty, served as an occasional special, with glazed figs.
5. Roast-pork bun at Momofuku Noodle Bar: chef David Chang’s modern ode to the classic Cantonese dish, served with scallions in a steamy Chinese bun.
6. Smoked pork shoulder at Rub: an entire pork butt, smoked for twelve hours—the closest New Yorkers will ever get to authentic barbecue nirvana.
7. Braised pork roast at Lupa: No pork list would be complete without something by the city’s Pied Piper of pork, Mario Batali.
8. Pork compresse at Le Cirque: pig trotter for the upper classes, deboned, breaded, and pressed down to its porky essence.
9. Roast-pork sandwich at Tony Luke’s: This stupendous gourmet hoagie comes with a little topping of broccoli rabe, to provide the illusion of healthfulness.
10. Cubano sandwich at the Spotted Pig: This fresser delicacy is served at lunchtime only, and is made here with real pulled pork, instead of the usual dry slices of ham.