Cocktails, craft beer and share plates are the order of the day at this trendy new eatery in the heart of Tamworth.
The first thing that strikes you about The Pig and Tinder Box – aside from the grand façade of the beautiful old bank building it’s housed within – is the unusual name. With a duality typical of English pubs, The Pig and Tinder Box is a nod to one of the first hotels in the New England region, opening under the same name in 1848.
In its modern incarnation, ‘The Pig’ – as locals lovingly refer to it – marries a classic pub vibe with that of a hip contemporary cocktail bar. The charming historic bank building, which stood empty on the main drag of Tamworth for years, seems to relish in the freshness of the modern warehouse-style interior that now serves as the dining hall, bar and open kitchen of The Pig.
The aesthetic is sleek and effortlessly cool with pendant lights hanging low over booths from high ceilings, undressed wooden tables casually adorned in little jars of native flowers and tall arched windows flooding the place in natural light. The clang and clash of busy chefs rings out across the dining room in harmony with smoothly curated tunes and, on Sunday afternoons and special events, live music. A broad front veranda offers al fresco seating overlooking Peel Street, and a hole in the wall serves early morning coffee to passersby before The Pig’s official opening time.
Food is served from midday until late, seven days a week, and tasty modern share plates and less-is-more woodfired pizzas are the name of the game. Standouts include the soft shell crab taco with pickled radish, pear, cucumber and orange sesame toffee, the roast duck betel leaf with toasted coconut and chilli jam and the pulled lamb shoulder with a pomegranate, feta, quinoa and leafy greens salad. Round out your selection with a fresh, healthy salad, perhaps the roast cauliflower with chickpeas and walnuts, or the zesty Vietnamese coleslaw.
The pizza menu will fire up any warm blooded Italian aficionado, with standouts including the pulled pork with goats cheese, apple, green chilli and crackling and the shredded duck with mango and mixed herbs.
Lunch options include lighter meals like a pulled lamb and roast pumpkin wrap served with sweet potato fries (like a dignified kebab for sober adults – delicious) and a Korean barbeque pork burger with kimchi and kewpie mayo. Those with a sweet tooth will find joy in the gingerbread pudding with salted caramel sauce, or perhaps the white chocolate panna cotta with seasonal pairings. Open late and with a casual, walk-in vibe, The Pig is the perfect place to swing by late for desert and coffee or perhaps a cocktail from the small but considered list.
Indeed, whether it’s a morning coffee, a casual lunch, drinks with friends or a romantic dinner, the folks at The Pig and Tinder Box have managed to create a space that feels ideally suited. It’s little wonder it has fast become a firm favourite of Tamworth locals, and certainly worth popping on the agenda for travellers passing through.
The Pig and Tinder Box is located at 429 Peel St, Tamworth, NSW.