Fig Pig brings avant-garde dishes to Old Town

BG sliders

Located in an historic building in Beaumont’s Old Town, The Fig Pig is a unique establishment that experiments with menu items to create savory dishes designed to satisfy your palate while remaining as local, seasonal and gluten-free as possible.

Nathan Luna, chef and co-owner with Jake Mazzu, utilizes a variety of ingredients and techniques to build appetizing, distinctive options for both lunch and dinner, guaranteed to force local residents to discard previous notions regarding what Beaumont has to offer in the way of new, inventive food.

We tried the BG sliders, an original take on your ordinary burger sliders, and the arugula sweet-pea pesto with penne pasta, both on the lunch menu.

The sliders came on soft, buttery bread with an onion-bacon jam, cheese, bacon and pickles made in-house, with juicy, tender beef patties and triple-cooked fries fried in short rib grease. Complimenting the sliders were four sauces, all made in Fig Pig’s kitchen: ketchup, aioli, gluten-free mustard and cilantro jalapeño bleu cheese (and the gluten-free mustard is worth mentioning twice — with a slightly sweet aftertaste and uncommon texture, it was a rare and pleasing alternative to your average mustard). The penne with arugula sweet-pea pesto was attractive and flavorful, with root vegetables added to create a healthier option for pasta lovers.

And for those really trying to watch what they eat?

Luna said, “90 percent of our menu is gluten-free. What is not, with about a 30-minute notice, we can make gluten-free. We have spaghetti that we always have on standby, but if they want the actual penne itself, about 30 minutes is all it takes us to make a small batch of gluten-free pasta. With the BG sliders (and) the BLT sliders, we have gluten-free bread in the freezer ready to go. So pretty much everything on the menu is gluten free. (As for) a couple of items, just let us know.”

Luna says they also use as many local, seasonal items as they possibly can, though weather changes can be a debilitating catalyst. For instance, with Beaumont’s most recent freeze, Luna said, “The farms are really tight.”

With different availability on certain ingredients, the menu is susceptible to change, and the dessert menu is no exception. The dinner menu offers dessert options like a Thin Mint milkshake, red apple gelato (served with fig sauce, apple pie chutney and brown butter sponge cake), and a green apple sorbet (served with shortbread crumbles, gastrique and cardamom sponge cake). For lunch, we had the ability to try any of six different homemade ice creams, and at $3/scoop, we sampled as many as we could.

The triple vanilla bean ice cream is a safe, sweet option, and reminded us a bit of traditional cookie dough. The cranberry ice cream came on pie crust with cranberry chutney, and was perfectly tart and unforgettable. Our favorite, however, was the pumpkin pie ice cream served on melted marshmallow, which has the right amount of spice, a smooth texture, and is perfect for the season.

While The Fig Pig has only been open since Oct. 15, Luna said they can and do cater to large parties, with 140 seats between upstairs and down. With a little rearranging, he said they can accommodate approximately 80 people upstairs for special occasions, or even their Sunday “family style meal.”

The restaurant’s usual hours are Tuesday through Saturday, with lunch from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. and dinner from 5-9:30 p.m., but Sundays they are open from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. for what they call their “family style meal.”

“On Sunday, you can still come in and get the regular menu, but we also have Dr Pepper pulled pork, tacos, spaghetti and meatballs, and just different things that we kind of like to play with. You order it by – if you have two or three or four people, or six or eight, however many – that’s how you order it.”

While there is no bar menu yet, Luna said the establishment hopes to obtain its beer and wine license within the month.

Located at 797 N. Fifth St. in Old Town, The Fig Pig is a must-try for locals seeking a modern, healthy and innovative alternative to brunch, lunch or dinner in Beaumont.