Let’s put this whole restaurant review thing aside for a second and talk about what really matters - old school country music stars who tried to rebrand themselves. You know Garth Brooks, country legend famous for singles like “Friends in Low Places” and other tunes worthy of belting out at 3:00am. But do you remember Chris Gaines? After churning out hits, Garth decided to rebrand himself as a new person, Chris Gaines, a soul patch rocking Australian in a pop-rock band called “Crush.” To put lightly, it wasn’t well received. Sometimes established legends can change direction and surprise us - Hootie turned Darius Rucker, or Taylor Swift “Love Story” turned Taylor Swift “Bad Blood.” But other times, they leave us wishing they had never messed with the winning formula.
You’ve heard of Girl & the Goat. You know about the Top Chef founder, famous pig face, and how it lives up to an insane amount of hype. Little Goat is the Chris Gaines version of Girl & the Goat. It’s like Girl & the Goat woke up one day and thought,“Screw this whole fine dining scene. I want to be a diner.” Little Goat isn’t bad, it’s just not what you expect or necessarily want. When we think “diner,” we think runny eggs, ground beef, shredded cheese, and chili thrown together in various concoctions that make you need a power nap. When Little Goat thinks “diner,” it thinks adventurous culinary twists and turns that make you need a power nap. Some of these combos might work elsewhere, but it doesn’t feel quite right at a diner. There’s still plenty of cheese and chili to be found, but you’ll be left scratching your head over items like breakfast spaghetti with clams and bok choy or taco salad with French dressing.
The atmosphere wants to be a diner (overly friendly staff, countertop seating, visible grill, and the sound of clinking dishes), but the yuppy crowd blows its cover and makes lunchtime waits unbearable. However, Little Goat has elements that make the space wonderful. Stop by the attached bakery, Little Goat Bread, for an incredible cinnabon or fresh bagel early in the morning. If you can swing it, sneak in early evening for a drink on the beautiful and somewhat secluded rooftop that's Perfect For an Early in the Game Date. Basically, skip the main event and go at off-peak hours for a unique experience. Diner, it’s not, but Little Goat has the potential to be something great if they lose the facade.
It’s hard to go wrong with cheese, lump crab, and Ritz crackers. It’s good in an indulgent, no apologies kind of way, and it’s probably one of the few real diner-like items on the menu.
Get it on a sandwich, get it on a salad, get it in a cup, get it any way you want it. The chili is good, and Little Goat gives you ample opportunity to try it out.
Thick, corn chips with barbecued pork, beans, peppers, sour cream, and avocado. Pro tip - get a side of the chili we mentioned above and smother it on your nachos.
Things get a little weird here. Yes, it’s got that magical goat chili, but their version of a taco salad includes French dressing, olives, and pickled onions. It’s not bad, but it’s odd.
This braised beef sandwich comes highly recommended and is their most popular sandwich. Layered havarti, avocado, pickled peppers, onions, and spicy mayo on a hoagie.
Crispy whitefish, shallot aioli, chickpeas, harissa vinaigrette. Again, it’s okay, but the chickpeas and harissa vinaigrette are odd ingredients.
It is not your typical salad as it’s piled high with cheese, chickpeas, tzatziki sauce, pickled onions, falafel, and fried bits. Feel free to applaud yourself for being healthy and ordering a salad, just know that this salad is anything but good for you.
A sesame cheddar biscuit covered with eggs, sausage, and an off-putting chili garlic chive sauce. We wanted to like it. We can’t.