The Fainting Goat: Porchetta

Fainting Goat Porchetta

A block off the intersection of 14th and U Street sits The Fainting Goat: Middle ground between the cheaper but more blasé food of U Street and the more inventive, but sometimes overpriced, food of 14th Street. Read: Food that doesn’t know how great it is yet!

The menu categories at TFG – nibble, graze, chomp and feed – hold no more than four selections each, making the menu easy to conquer for four diners willing to share. Start with The Best Thing on the Menu: Porchetta sandwich with fennel, dill and parsley on cibatta. It blew our hoofs off.

So what the pork is porchetta? It’s been popping up on a lot of menus lately, and for good reason. Typically a whole pig is prepped (we’ll spare you the gory stuff) then lovingly layered with stuffing, meat, fat and skin. Next, it’s rolled, spitted, and roasted with a heavy hand of salt and sometimes garlic, rosemary, fennel or other herbs. Thank you Italy, we were grateful for Barolo, but this is better. At TFG, the chef spreads cibatta with a miracle paste made of fresh dill and fennel before generously applying the porchetta.

 Is it criminal that we didn’t go with goat for the BTM? Perhaps, but we gave it a good hard try – two different ways in fact. The Fainting Goat offers their namesake meat as an appetizer tartare and a juicy seared entree. Our BTM pick doesn’t so much shun the goat, as it does celebrate the best damn sandwich we’ve had in months.

The Fainting Goat Garden

Other top picks? Seared scallops that taste of vanilla, and a bowl of warm winter vegetables called “The Garden,” that’s topped with caper-sized mustard seeds. Click here for more photos of the meal.

Porchetta not your BTM? Share your favorites in the comments section.

Stoney’s: Super Grilled Cheese

Stoney's Super Grilled Cheese

Sure, there are a lot of good sandwiches in DC. Maybe you’ve been wowed by fish gyros, piled-high pastrami, tofu banh mi or foie gras-topped duck burgers. None of these match up to Stoney’s Best Thing on the Menu: Super Grilled Cheese. Eating the world’s most perfect iteration of what mom used to make, paired with a cold one, never gets old. They can even serve it with Campbell’s-like tomato soup!

What’s so super about it? Bread that seems to be two parts butter, one part bread fried so crisp you can hear a cacophony of chewing on any given evening; tripled-up slices of melty American cheese the color of a harvest moon; thick-cut bacon, tomato and tangy red onion. Not feeling so super? Try the plain Grilled Cheese, Grilled Ham N Cheese or go gourmet with Rocket Cheese (arugula, Swiss cheese and grape tomatoes on multi-grain) or Chesapeake Cheese (4oz crab cake, Swiss, alfredo sauce and spinach on multi-grain).

If this isn’t enough to stop falsely labeling Stoney’s as a dive bar, you can also try their Salmon BLT, Super Meatloaf Sandwich, or Boss of the Sauce Burger while watching your team play on a big screen or challenging your office mates to trivia. The only thing that remotely places them in this category is their very fair prices. The Super Grilled Cheese (with fries) will run you $9.95 or get it half off on Thursdays during happy hour (5:00-7:00pm).

We’re looking forward to their second location on L Street, just one more way to maximize our Super Grilled Cheese intake.

Super Grilled Cheese not your BTM? Post your favorites in the comments section.

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