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“Major Disappointment”
Review of The Dancing Pig - CLOSED

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The Dancing Pig
Cuisines: Barbecue
Neighborhood: The Castro
Restaurant details
Neighborhood: The Castro
Santa Cruz, California
Level 6 Contributor
140 reviews
122 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
“Major Disappointment”
Reviewed November 11, 2012

I don't know what it is about the Castro...one would think that it would house top-notch eateries, being a world-wide destination. The Dancing Pig joins the list of Castro disappointments.

What got me and my friends through the door was the promise of "Crab Puppies" on the door menu. These are supposed to be dungeness crab fried in cornmeal and flour with jalapeno and garlic served with a spicy remoulade. They arrived dark brown - near carcinogenic. Note to chef - Hush puppies should be served golden brown, and please, don't put something on the menu if you can't taste the ingredient. We could see a tiny few strings of crab meat, but there was no crab to be tasted. They were basically overcooked, spicy hush puppies.

I got the Sliders Menage a Trois. The pulled pork was bland, yet tender. The smoked chicken tasted barely smoked, and the beef brisket had more fat and carmelized onion than the beef itself. It left quite the mess on the plate.

My friends said their sandwiches were "OK." And, I understand portion control, but a tiny teaspoon of ketchup in a big ramekin for a big plate of fries? Really? How many trips does the waiter have to make with these tiny servings of ketchup?

Service was good, so at least I can put a positive spin on things.

And, oh yeah, on our way out, it was not a great thing to see one of the cooks rub the back of his hand on his nose and go back to cooking with out washing or sanitizing his hands. Really?

  • Visited December 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Smudge R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

6 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
San Francisco, California
Level 6 Contributor
126 reviews
88 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“Go for drinks, forget about the food”
Reviewed September 27, 2012

The drinks here are strong, country strong! And if you come during Happy Hour, you'll be more than happy when you leave as long as you don't order the food. The BBQ is bad, not even OK, it is bad. The staff is dysfunctional, and I really wish the food was good, if it were I would be a regular.

Visited August 2012
Helpful?
Thank MickD415
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Honesdale, pa
Level 4 Contributor
40 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“These guys know meat”
Reviewed August 17, 2012

Server was extremely helpful both with the menu and the sights. All ingredients were fresh and the BBQ sauce selection delicious. My wife had the oyster Po'Boy and I the brisket ends sandwich, both were very good.

  • Visited August 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank matt b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brighton, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
56 reviews
30 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Want to give it more, but it needs some work.”
Reviewed May 29, 2012

Had a great meal at the Dancing Pig. It was Memorial Day and a few staff had phoned in 'sick', so we had to wait quite a while, but the outside garden area was perfect to mosey away the day. I ordered pulled pork with garlic fries and coleslaw; my husband ordered the half chicken with a baked potato and slaw. Food took quite a while to arrive, but the staff were very friendly and eager to please.
The food itself was fine and plentiful - and tasty. I've seen previous bad reviews of this place and the expense of the food, but I think these must have been a while ago, because we had our stuff for around $15 a plate. And it wasn't sandwiches - it was presented quirkily on tin plates and loaf tins for the slaw. Not the best meal we've ever had, but far from the worst.
One suggestion - the slaw had all the ingredients you'd expect, except for mayonnaise, so it was a little dry. Tasted okay, but could have used a little help.
I think the guys that run this place have their hearts in the right place, but they maybe need to focus on making sure the customer gets exactly what they want. It has so much potential, but they seemed a little overwhelmed at times. Which is fine if it's happening in the background, but front of house needs complete professionalism. It might have been the Memorial Day people who suddenly and very conveniently for them discovered 24 hour pneumonia, so the restaurant was suddenly understaffed. I wish the place well.

  • Visited May 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank StevePete9332
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Deptford, New Jersey, United States
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Decent! Nice Atmosphere”
Reviewed April 11, 2012

Had lunch @ the Pig today. My pulled pork sandwich was good, not over seasoned or over sauced. Hubby had brisket sammy, and LOVED it. Not fatty, not dry, and he's picky! We had Crab puppies app, was good, could taste the crab and the habanero. Waitron advised a nice dark creamy beer for me, hubby had a Miller Lite. All good! We felt welcomed and comfy. Give this place a try, they're up and coming for sure!

  • Visited April 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Trxzee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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