Six amazing San Francisco chefs let their creative juices flow and created an amazing feast from start to finish, competing at this past weekend’s Cochon 555 at the Fairmont Hotel. But there could only be one winner and that went to the team of Thomas McNaughton and Matt Sigler from soon-to-open Salumeria.
McNaughton and Sigler had a bit of everything on their menu: broth with crackling and brain, smoked pork loin, crispy trotter, heart and kidney agnolotti, a pork roulade and the capper and probably the most talked about dish of the evening, a pork s’more made of a graham cracker, lard caramel and belly marshmallow.
To be honest, it was really difficult to choose a winner as each chef prepared an amazing array of dishes from the heritage breed pig they were given. From Traci Des Jardins Mexican-influenced fare (empanadas, conchinita pibil), Jason Fox’s amazing egg custard with sausage and chocolate-covered chicarrones and macaroon, Anthony Strong’s coppiette (5-day cure, campari, peroni, fennel pollen) and arancini to Nicolas Borzee’s interesting vodka and hay consomme, pork belly and ribs, the guests and judges were the true winners as we got to see these talented chefs work their magic.
The chefs wouldn’t have been able to feed the hungry attendees without the help of the local farms providing the pigs. They included Walnut Keep Farm, Magruder Ranch, Stone Valley Farms & Jubilee Farm, Clark Summit Farm, Prather Ranch Meat Co. and Belcampo Meat Co.
The event (specifically the butcher contest with Dave “The Butcher” Budworth of Marina Meats) helped raise $1,800 for local schools and the remainder of the proceeds went to the farms that provided the pigs for the evening.
McNaughton and Sigler will now move on to the grand finale, staged at The Food & Wine Festival in Aspen on June 17, where they will compete against winners in the other nine cities of the nationwide tour.