The Polite Pig at Disney Springs opened almost exactly one year ago, and has been a popular location ever since – serving up modern barbecue as well as their own Cask & Larder craft beers and even a bourbon bar with over 60 selections.
We were invited to The Polite Pig a couple of days back to celebrate National Beer Day ahead of the actual April 7th date, as well to enjoy some of the food matched with their beers. The Polite Pig is a concept from Orlando chefs James and Julie Petrakis, James Beard Award nominees who own the extremely well regarded restaurant The Ravenous Pig in Winter Park. Along with The Ravenous Pig and neighboring Swine & Sons, you can find their Cask & Larder location at the Orlando International Airport in the Southwest terminal – that is where a lot of the Cask & Larder beer is sold. So when guests visit The Polite Pig at Walt Disney World, they are enjoying an estabilished local brand with locally sourced ingredients and locally brewed Cask & Larder beer. And just to add before heading into the food and drink, The Polite Pig is now selling Gideon’s Bakehouse chocolate chip cookies. Gideon’s Bakeshouse is another very locally well known Winter Park establishment and it’s exciting to be able to enjoy another local brand at a location I frequent.
Outside of The Polite Pig, the signage mentions Modern BBQ, Handcrafted Taps, and Bourbon Bar. The small batch cocktails here are wonderful. The Polite Pig just started offering a Polite Sangria with Spanish red wine and blood orange liqueur that I enjoyed as I am not a beer drinker. The Vodka Lemonade is excellent too.
The meal included the four beers sold here and we talked with Brewmaster Larry Foor during dinner. The full size beer served to our group was the Cask & Larder Lone Palm Golden Ale. It is the most popular seller, and Jeff enjoyed all the beers. Alongside it, the Hop Salt Pretzel that includes a beer cheese (porter) fondue and IPA mustard. It is dusted with hop salt. I mentioned that I don’t drink beer, Jeff drank all of them. The beer cheese was really good, even though I don’t drink beer nor do I eat cheese generally except mozzarella. And yet, the combination in the beer cheese fondue was tasty even for a non-beer, non-cheese eater! The pretzel here is listed on the menu under “shareables”. The Polite Pig menu is actually pretty extensive for a counter service location, with a variety of salads, sandwiches, sides, desserts and beverages. One of my favorite items we’ve purchased is the Smoked Chicken Salad Sandwich, just for one recommendation.
Here is a closer look at the pretzel.
The next item up is the Southern Pig Sandwich with pulled pork, fennel-apple slaw, tangy mustard bbq and Duke’s mayo. The meat is tossed in Thomas’s Southern Gold, which is named after the younger son of James and Julie Petrakis – all of the sauces are named after family members. Petrakius said, “My wife is very German, he got a lot of the German traits and we named Thomas’s Southern Gold since the mustard barbecue came with the Germans”. Petrakis told us that Duke’s is used at the Ravenous Pig as well and it was a big deal for them to use it here. The BBQ Cauliflower is absolutely delicious as well – I do not eat cauliflower or Brussels Sprouts at all otherwise, but here they are two of my favorite menu items. This is a really nice match of a sandwich and side. The beer served with this was the Cask & Larder Red Drum Amber Ale.
This is my Polite Sangria alongside the Cask & Larder Lone Palm Golden Ale. The Polite Sangria had just been sold for a couple of days before that, so it is very new. I also tried the Vodka Lemonade, which is a refreshing drink as well. House cocktails here are on tap.
We were brought some sides to try. My favorites here are the Sweet Potato Tots and I’ve had the Tomato and Watermelon Salad before and it is a very refreshing dish. I really don’t eat beets outside of borscht so I can’t give any review of them. These three can be made vegan as well, actually a number of the sides can be. Here is the list I received on sides that can be vegan.
Tomato & Watermelon Salad (no feta cheese)
Roasted Beets (no goat cheese yogurt)
BBQ Cauliflower (no paprika sour cream)
Crispy Brussels Sprouts
Grilled Corn (no toppings)
Sweet Potato Tots (no parmesan cheese)
BBQ Waffle Fries
The USDA Prime Brisket is another of my favorites at the restaurant, it has a coffee rub (and I don’t drink coffee either, so it isn’t necessary for enjoyment of the beef!) To the side is the Crispy Brussels Sprouts, and I do recommend this highly. Honestly, the Brussels sprouts are seriously addicting!
The other beer being offered during the meal was a Cask & Larder Working Man Porter, a malted style porter. Brewmaster Larry Foor said that it was “very smooth and very dry”. He typically brews dry beer.
We broke some news the other day about Gideon’s Bakehouse now selling chocolate chip cookies here. And yes, there is a cookie under there! The Polite Pig is just selling the chocolate chip variety, Gideon’s does have other flavors at their East End Market location. These cookies are so popular and delicious, and I think almost a half pound. Gideon’s cookies do sell out early and often at their main location and I expect the same here, at least until their new production facility is up and running in a month or two.
Gideon’s cookies do cost more here, I was asked about that – a few dollars more than the main location. But it saves me a couple of hour extra round trip through Downtown Orlando to get a fix of these delicious cookies, so for me it is worth the splurge. The cookie is shareable between 2 or 3 people, I cut one up into quarters for the freezer to snack on for a few days.
While we were invited to The Polite Pig for National Beer Day, you can celebrate any day with some delicious BBQ and a craft beer (or sangria, cocktail, bourbon or a soda!) We’ll be back sooner than later, it’s one of the restaurants we make the rounds to at Disney Springs. The Polite Pig often adds to items as well, including a baby kale salad and salmon dish most recently.