After a more than two month makeover, Blind Pig Bistro's Charles Walpole, Rene Gutierrez, and Ben Sherwood opened the doors of lunch, dinner, and cocktail spot Babirusa this afternoon. The bar and restaurant (formerly Blind Pig at Eastlake Teriyaki) sits right next door to the Blind Pig; diners will find some cross-over seasonings and cooking techniques that riff off its sibling's menu.
For example, Korean ingredients on Babirusa's food list are inspired by a particularly successful Blind Pig octopus dish from chef Kenny Gibbs. Plus, a solid, summery drink list (case in point: the Suzette with gin, Campari, grapefruit, and sparkling wine and the Shandy with lime juice, tequila, simple syrup and old German lager) from Marjorie alum Ben Sherwood.
Mix and match small plates range from $3 to $8, including:
· Burger with charred eggplant aioli, chimichurri and grilled onion (a "casual rendition" of Blind Pig's burger)
· Ling cod brandade with matzo crackers
· Beet pickled eggs
· Fried chickpeas and Marcona almonds
· Pork cracklings
· Kimchee hush puppies
· Scallop ceviche avocado and corn nuts
· Beets with feta yogurt and walnut
· Fava and ricotta toast
· Chickory salad with falafel and z'atar dressing
· Potato bravas smoked aioli
· Pork ribs with gochujang and pickled daikon
· Fish and chips with sorrel aioli