I’m getting a rather late start on the Dish of the Month this month - just one more thing to blame on TPTB at CBS, obviously - but I finally made it to Revival today for the Cured Plate.
Counter-clockwise from the lower left: spiced honey whipped lardo, Coppa, Pepperone, Head Cheese, pecans and peanuts, chicharrone, bread, Salame (underneath the chicharrone and bread), sour cucumber, and, in the center, buttermilk ricotta.
I dug right into the head cheese and it was fine, at just the right temperature, I think. By the end of the meal/last slice, it had warmed up considerably and I found it less appetizing, although that was also in part because I was pretty full by that time. I presume everything here comes from owner Morgan Weber’s mangalica pigs? FYI the slices are only about 3" in diameter and quite thin.
I was underwhelmed by the pepperone at first. This turned out to be because it had quite a chill on it, more than anything else on the tray, and was very hard. By the time I got to the last of it and it had warmed up to room temp, the flavors had developed more fully and it was more easily chewed and it was one of my favorite items.
The spiced honey whipped lardo and buttermilk ricotta were both great, I could have eaten more of both of them if I’d had the tummy space. Likewise the slightly peppery sour cucumbers, all providing a welcome counterpoint to the saltiness and fattiness of the meats…
The best of the meats for me was the salame, underneath the chicharrones and bread, which I never got a picture of. Most interesting salame I think I’ve ever had, too, likewise slightly peppery with a red pepper rather than black.
The coppa didn’t make much of an impression on me, surprisingly, and that may have been the only one the waiter specifically referred to as house-made. I think it just kind of got lost in all the other things to taste and experience and try to remember. The linked article above says everything is house-made so it was notable to me this was the only one the waiter mentioned; I also noticed only a few of the meats in the cases were specifically identified as house-made.
The chicharrones, relatively freshly fried, peppery and quite greasy were a nice ‘local’ twist, but the biggest disappointment was the pecans, soft and flavorless. I had smiled when I first saw them on the platter and was very disappointed. I kept nibbling at them, hoping to find at least one that would resemble what a good pecan should taste like, but to no avail. I had looked over all the meats in the meat case while waiting for my order and wondered if I was going to get some of their mortadella, made with pecans rather than pistachios. Maybe it’s better that I didn’t.
The bread was, well, bread. A little warm though not freshly baked, it was all that was needed as a vehicle for the lardo, a nice sweet counterpoint to the saltiness and spiciness of almost everything else on the plate.
I had expected that I would wind up with some leftovers to take home to taste again after some reflection but I left unfinished only the bread, some of the chicharonnes and some of the pecans. I was simply too full (and satisfied) to finish them.
The waiter was not much help in specifically identifying the meats. I had seen there were several varieties of pepperone and salame in the cases and I wanted to know which I had gotten but he couldn’t identify them. After paying, I went to look at them again and the two that I identified as being the most likely suspects for what I had been served were both missing any identifying signage! The pepperone and salame were the two meats I’d be most likely to want to buy to take home. Prices, I believe, generally ran from $19-$26/lb.
I will heartily recommend this offering at Revival to my fellow Houston Onionistas or anyone visiting. Go hungry and take your time. It is second only to the Revival Dog, which has disappeared from the menu, as the best thing I have had at Revival.
How are the rest of you doing? Or is everybody just planning on doing Coltivare and calling it a month?
Let’s get out there and eat and report!