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Sunday, December 4, 2016

PIGGY SMALLS

PIGGY SMALLS
1200 ALA MOANA BLVD
HONOLULU, HI  96814
808-777-3588
HOURS:  Monday thru Saturday 11:00 AM - 9:30 PM
                 Sunday 11:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Here is what I can say about Piggy Smalls.  I don't understand it.  I don't like it.  I don't recommend it.
This new sister restaurant to the very popular Pig and The Lady is now open in Ward Village in the old home of Kua Aina Burgers.  We arrived on a weekend to find a small line of people waiting to be seated.  I put in our name and was asked if we were going to sit outside or going to walk around.  I said walk around and the hostess took my name and cell phone number and said there would be about a 15 minute wait and that she would call me when our table was ready.  I immediately got a confirming text from the restaurant that allowed me to cancel my reservation by texting a number back.  Oh how I wished I would have done that.  We cruised Ward Center and did some very quick shopping before my phone rang.  The hostess was on the line telling me our table was ready.  We walked back to Piggy Smalls and were seated on the small wood stumps that match the communal tables.  The smell of the place did not sit well with me.  Smelled like a restaurant I visited in China.
The waitress arrived with water and took our drink order.  The restaurant serves beer and wine so I went with a glass of Chardonnay to start the meal.  As we looked over the menu, there were bewildering looks and comments about what kind of food this is.  "Is it Asian, Indian or Middle Eastern"?.  Nothing really sounded good to me so we decided to eat family style and order a few different dishes.  We started with the Salad of Sprouting Seeds ($12 small).  I liked the vinaigrette and lettuce.  The Sprouting Seeds were not sprouted rather they were pods and the Puffed Rice while adding texture had no flavor.  We paid $7 extra for the Falafel in this salad.  These little dry balls of Chick Peas were absolutely tasteless.  Not worth eating.  The award winning Scallion Corn Cakes ($8) had a description that made my mouth water; anchovy XO Sauce, picked charred corn, avocado crema and young cilantro.  These are all things I like.  There were four on the plate for three people and I expected t eat at least two.  Ate one of these and left the last one on the plate.  Looked great but the flavor for all three of us just was not there.  The Hanoi Shrimp Cold Noodles ($16) was a huge disappointment and everyone at our table did not like the taste in our mouths after eating it.  The Noodles come cold and the waitress pours a kind of sweet sauce on the side of them and tells you to mix it all up good when you are ready to eat it.  We mixed it up and felt that the flavors were mixed up.  There are a lot of "aromatic herbs" in the dish so get ready for a big bite of dill or mint that is overpowering.  None of us liked the Shrimp and we left half of them along with half of the noodles on the plate.  My favorite of the night was the Pho-Strami Sandwich ($16).  I took a bite without dipping the sandwich in the Pho Broth and that was a mistake.  Without the Pho Broth this sandwich is not worth $16.  With the Pho Broth its worth maybe $8 but nowhere near $16.  The Broth makes the dish and was probably the best tasting thing we at all night.  Loved the Broth.  When the waitress approached our table there was quite a bit of leftovers.  She asked if we wanted take out cartons and in unison we all said "no".  All three of us left with bad tastes in our mouths.  One said I have a stomach ache and the other said "never eating there again".  While I have a lot of respect and admiration for the owners of Piggy Smalls and I like some of the food at The Pig and The Lady, I gotta give Piggy Smalls two big thumbs down.  The food was just bad.

PIGGY SMALLS IS ON THE CORNER IN FORMER SPACE OF KUA AINA SANDWICH
A LINE OUT FRONT AT PIGGY SMALLS
PIGGY SMALLS LOGO
DINING ROOM WITH LONG COMMUNAL TABLES AND SOME OUTDOOR SEATING TOO
MURAL ABOVE DINING ROOM
PIGS ON THE COUNTER
WOOD TABLES AND CHAIRS
PIGGY SMALLS MENU 
NOODLES, SANDWICHES AND FISH
SALAD OF SPROUTING SEEDS WITH FALAFEL
DRY TASTELESS FALAFEL AND PUFFED RICE IN SAME DISH
SCALLION CORN CAKES
LOOKS GREAT BUT THE FLAVOR JUST WAS NOT THERE
HANOI SHRIMP COLD NOODLES
HANOI SHRIMP COLD NOODLES AFTER BEING MIXED UP WITH SAUCE
PHO-STRAMI WITH PHO BROTH
MUSTARD SEEDS WERE VERY TASTELESS 
DIP THE PHO-STRAMI IN THE PHO BROTH FOR MAXIMUM FLAVOR
FRESH BAKED COOKIES FOR DESSERT



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