New Cortex Restaurant Brings a Sense of Play to Upscale Comfort Food

Sometimes when you make your dinner reservations, you want an elegant, upscale experience that shows off the full culinary breadth of your town. And sometimes, you just want to pig out.

Now Midtown is bringing you a restaurant where you can have both in a single meal. On Thursday, Nov. 8, The Chocolate Pig (4220 Duncan Ave.) will open its doors and invite you in for elevated comfort food, stellar cocktails, chef-butchered meats and—yes—a whole lot of chocolate.

New Cortex Restaurant Brings a Sense of Play to Upscale Comfort Food

Image courtesy of SwitzerFilm.

The brainchild of the hospitality group 23 City Blocks Catering—which brought you Handcrafted by Bissinger’s, The Caramel Room, Lumen Private Event Space and more—The Chocolate Pig is every bit as attentive to the details of the dining experience as they are to their seasonal, tightly curated menu. But that doesn’t mean they’re stuffy. The space is located in the heart of the Cortex Innovation District—the dining room even flows subtly into a co-working space where you might spy someone coding up a storm if you make a wrong turn on your way to the restroom—and the restaurant seems primed for a customer that works hard and wants to play hard, while still pushing the boundaries of flavor innovation.

A simple vegetarian starter like a Brussels sprout is chicken fried and doused in buttermilk broth, reinventing the humble vegetable. The classic deviled egg somehow encompasses the whole barbecue, with smoked chicken whipped into the filling, pickled sweet peppers and chicken skins adding crunch, and a generous swirl of St. Louis Style BBQ sauce. It’s rare to find food that has this much fun while also finding such clever ways to surprise the palate, and chef Patrick Russell, formerly of Virginia’s Field and Main and Tom Colicchio’s Craft, shines in this niche.

New Cortex Restaurant Brings a Sense of Play to Upscale Comfort Food

Image courtesy of 23 City Blocks.

Of course, a trip to the Chocolate Pig wouldn’t be complete without some chocolate—and, yes, you can also get your pig fix in the same dish. Pastry chef Tyler Davis creates the confections that give the restaurant its name, often incorporating a little caramelized pork rind or chocolate-covered bacon into sweet, airy ice creams and affogatos. The cocktail menu also plays with that balance of lightness and depth; the Clark is a favorite, pairing a valentine-pink swirl of hibiscus syrup, grapefruit, Golden Falernum, lime and sparkling wine with a serious amount of tequila.

The Chocolate Pig opens for dinner service on Nov. 8 and will roll out lunch service and a dessert-forward brunch in the coming days. A market is planned for later this year. Call 314.272.3230 or visit their website for reservations.

Featured image courtesy of SwitzerFilm.

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