Little Pig serves what they describe as “Thai-ish snacks and street food” at the takeout window around the corner from Yordprom Coffee Co. on Congress Street in Portland. Photo by Megan Gray

When I moved to Portland, my dad came up with a challenge.

My parents live in the Midwest and had only been to Maine once, years before I moved to the state. They had perhaps hoped I would settle closer to home, and I tried to quell their disappointment by telling them about the food scene in my new city. With so many options, my dad decided that they would try as many restaurants as possible on their visits. That meant no repeats.

Seven years later, we have mostly stuck to that rule, with only a couple exceptions. (Cheddar jalapeño biscuits from Tandem Bakery in Portland, for example, are a must on every single trip.) I love researching new and new-to-me restaurants before their visits, and I always keep my eyes peeled (and read weekly Press Herald food news column The Wrap, of course) for the latest openings and closings. So I was excited to hear about a recent addition to my neighborhood: Little Pig, the self-described “Thai-ish” spot that has taken over the window next to Yordprom on Congress Street, and I decided to go on a scouting mission.

Grapow Gai Kai Dow at Little Pig. Photo by Megan Gray

I placed my order online on a Monday evening and was glad to be ordering for two so I didn’t have to narrow down my options too much. My husband and I decided we would split three dishes: Piyathida’s Dumplings (six steamed dumplings with ground pork belly and shiitake mushrooms, $12), Grapow Gai Kai Dow (a stir-fry of minced chicken, garlic and chili over steamed jasmine rice, $16) and Moo Ping (grilled marinated pork skewers with tamarind and palm sugar glaze, $15 with added sticky rice and dipping sauce).

We walked over to the takeout window to pick up our food, which was ready in about 20 minutes. The patio outside the window is furnished with chairs, tables and planters, so we decided to enjoy our meal right there.

I dug into the dumplings, which were plump and stuffed with filling. My husband started on the stir-fry, which was topped with a crispy fried egg and had a little kick from the chili. We both enjoyed those dishes, but we agreed that our favorite item was the skewers, which were tender and flavorful.

Our spread at Little Pig. From left to right: Grapow Gai Kai Dow at Little Pig, Moo Ping, Piyathida’s Dumplings. Photo by Megan Gray

The menu includes other dishes I want to try: a banh mi with crispy fried hake, chive cakes, Thai street corn. A friend recently loved the shrimp crackers so much that I’ve been kicking myself for not adding them for just $2. So I’m glad my dad’s rule only applies to my family when they visit Maine.

Thankfully, I’m free to make as many repeat visits as I want.

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