The chimerical Medieval cockentrice combines a capon and a suckling pig into a single culinary creation. The Cockentrice is also the name of the first restaurant from Kevin Ouzts, best known as the chef behind the boutique charcuterie, the Spotted Trotter. It’s been open since early January.
The look: One of the full-service anchors at Krog Street Market, the Cockentrice is a place defined by the celebration of butchery and charcuterie, from glass cases near the front entrance to displays of cured meats hanging around the dining room. Sturdy wood and metal tables and chairs, upholstered banquettes, and the tidy tiles and stainless steel surrounding the open kitchen give the space the stately feeling of an updated chophouse.
The scene: Early one Saturday night, roving bands of eaters and drinkers swarmed through the Market’s food hall. Inside the restaurant, the mood was strikingly more serene. But the bar was buzzing, and there was already a wait for a table.
The food: Ouzts’ cooking is aimed at pushing the boundaries of preparing and pairing meat, while acknowledging his debts to the past. Not surprisingly, a large portion of the menu is dedicated to contemporary charcuterie ($6-$18), including the likes of black pepper sorghum salami, heirloom prosciutto, and duck fat and foie gras pate. Larger offerings range from Burgundy-braised beef pillows with Jerusalem artichokes, morel mushrooms and mirepoix ($18) and roasted red fish in caul fat with celeriac, Swiss chard, potato and roasted duck jus ($24), to confit of suckling pig ($22).
The drinks: Ouzts’ sister, Daisy Nagel, who is in charge of both the front of the house and the beverage program, has curated a wine list with a good number of reasonably priced selections by the glass ($8-$13). Behind the bar, Tyler Austin features house cocktails such as the Farringdon with gin, Dolin Blanc, Vida mezcal rinse, and smoked paprika oil ($12), and the Pret a Mangiare with bourbon, maple syrup, a whole egg, and Spotted Trotter trimmings ($12).
The extras: If you’re in the mood for more meat, the shop in front stocks charcuterie, fresh sausages and hefty dry-aged steaks.