PrintWorks in North Carolina

I drove to North Carolina during my spring break to visit my sister at her college and to visit one my favorite restaurants.  I can’t say that I’ve actually been to enough restaurants in North Carolina to be a good judge of which ones are the best, but when I visited PrintWorks in Greensboro for the first time while touring colleges, it made such an impression that I keep going back.

It was a series of meals there that made me fall in love with duck confit and sunchokes.  I remember having a gorgeous and crispy leg of duck confit for dinner with a side of sunchokes for dinner and then ordering a breakfast hash with duck confit, mushrooms, and a poached egg for breakfast the next day.  I regretfully wasn’t photographing my meals back then, so I can’t share the images, but I can promise that my most recent visit featured food that was just as spectacular.

Printworks BuildingThe restaurant itself is a site to behold.  It’s a white brick building with windows all the way around.  It is somehow southern, yet industrial at the same time, with exposed metal ceilings within and soft, linen curtains serving as airy dividers between the different dining areas.  The color scheme is a warm cream with light, spring green accents.  The setting is spectacular, and the menu is just as charming as the building, with a vintage type-writer theme.

Printworks TableOne of my family’s favorite things about PrintWorks is their bread plate that comes to every table before the rest of the meal. They have a unique, bold, and wonderful take on the traditional bread plate that includes crusty slices of bread served with a soft block of butter that has big flakes of salt perched on top.  The unique part is the entire clove of roasted garlic that comes alongside.  It’s golden and soft, caramelized until it’s become sweet.  You get to squeeze the cloves out of their skins and can spread them onto the bread with a smear of salty butter.  It’s pungent but gets your taste buds ready for the rest of the meal.

I started with a salad that I had ordered the last time I visited the restaurant because it was so good, I just had to try it again.  It was a frisee salad with a poached egg, lardons, and warm bacon vinaigrette.  The rich, warm dressing slightly softens the crisp frisee and the richness of the lardons perfectly complements the tartness of the lettuce.  The gooey yolk from the poached egg just ties the whole dish together.

Printworks SaladMy next course was fried calamari perched atop more frisee.  On the base of the plate was a pool of slightly sweet cocktail sauce and dollops of lemon aioli for dipping.  The calamari themselves were lightly battered and fried, still tender with just a slight chew.  They were salty like the sea and scrumptious dipped in the delightful sauces

Printworks CalamariI had braised pork cheek as my entree.  I have only ever had pork cheek when it’s cured, sliced, and baked until crispy like bacon, so I was excited to try this succulent cut in a different format.  It was smothered in a ragout of tomatoes and mushrooms which created a nice, earthy pairing for the tender and porky cheek.  I didn’t take a picture of my entree for a funny reason: as much as I wanted to share it on my blog, the cheek was completely covered by the deep red sauce, and the sight of the chunky, red mixture simply could not convey the complexity and wonderful flavor of the dish.  To be honest, it really didn’t look that appealing, so I’m attempting to do it justice with my words without having to explain its appearance.

I hope you enjoyed this little journal entry of sorts about my tour of food from my spring break, because there are more restaurants and meals to come!  And if you’re ever in Greensboro, I highly recommend you visit PrintWorks!

2 Responses to “PrintWorks in North Carolina”
  1. Nana and Pop-Pop says:

    Erin, This place looks amazing! If we ever get down to see Devin, we’ll be sure to visit Printworks. Particularly loved the idea of a poached egg atop the salad! What did Devin have? I’m guessing Printworks serves chicken in some form.

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