Cochon555, the hyper-local festival with a flair for innovation, is back on the road with its 2017 tour and whole-hog competition for a cause. The Heritage BBQ edition returns to San Francisco on Sunday, June 4, 2017 at Magnolia Brewing Company. The promotion of global food cultures and heritage breed pig farming will be the central themes of the day. Winemakers, distillers, chefs, farmers, brewers, and bartenders - some of the city's biggest hospitality talents will take guests on a journey that is both delicious and inspiring. From Malaysia and Korea to Argentina and the Caribbean, Old World barbecue recipes from myriad cultures will be cooked over live fires. To further champion the good food movement, a portion of all proceeds will go to Cochon555's sister charity, Piggy Bank.
For the first time in San Francisco, Cochon555 and the Piggy Bank Charity are also proud to announce a partnership with the world's most prestigious forum for food studies, the Oxford Food Symposium on Food and Cookery. On Saturday, June 3 at 9 a.m., the 2017 Cochon555 National Tour will offer a rare taste of the provocative Symposium spirit. Called 'BESPOKE: A Cold Brew-Fueled Exploration of Taste & Thought,' the goal is to enrich the culinary worlds of all involved through keynote speeches, themed panels, round table discussions, and an exclusive charity dinner.
At the heart of all Cochon555 barbecue events lies a culinary competition to promote local family farming and global traditions. Five local chefs are each given one whole, heritage breed pig of 200 pounds and one week to prepare the whole animal. Each chef must present a "Judge's Plate" of six dishes scored on utilization; global influences; cooking techniques; and overall flavor. A panel of 20 notable judges selects a winner, who will then be crowned the "BBQ Prince/Princess" of San Francisco. Expanding the circle of talent, this year will also feature two satellite competitions to complement the original whole-animal tilt. Somm Smackdown pits five of the city's top sommeliers against one another in a quest to find the best wine/pig match. Punch Kings does the same for five bartenders, challenging them to each make their own twist on the original, historic large-group drinking format: cocktail punch.
Communal feasting is an integral part of the Cochon555 culinary fabric. Beyond the 30 chef-competitor dishes - all told, some 1,500-plus pounds of heritage pork - guests can sample beef tartare with the wines of Antica Napa Valley; farmhouse cheeses; a pop-up bakery from La Brea; a Salami Snack Bar from Creminelli and Divina; a ramen noodle soup bar paired with the racy white Wines of Germany; organic pâté offerings from Les Trois Petit Cochons; a Luxury Butter Bar featuring Sabatino truffle butter, foie gras, and more; and an innovative take on classic pastry presented by Perfect Puree of Napa Valley.
Cochon555 events are theaters for innovative spirit, wine, and cocktail experiences. Libations include Smoked Old Fashioneds with Breckenridge Bourbon; The Manhattan Project presented by Poached Jobs; the Tiki Bar featuring Angostura Rum; a Courvoisier Cognac 'neat' tasting with handcrafted chocolates; and a Heritage Rum Cart. New pours incorporating the historic bitters and luscious rums of Angostura will also be unveiled at the Swizzle Bar. An array of wines grouped under the "Five Winemakers" banner will feature Kosta-Browne, CIRQ, Scholium Project; Pax Wine Cellars and Silver Oak Cellars. Further tables include Wines of the World, Azzurro Wine Company, and a host of artisanal cider and beer offerings.
Looking back on the 2016 event in San Francisco, Chef Marc Zimmerman of Alexander's Steakhouse won the event with a Mangalitsa Cross breed of pig raised by Winkler Farms. Originating from Hungary in the early 1800's, the Mangalitsa is a very rare breed characterized by its course, wooly coat and ability to withstand extreme condition. Its high-quality, lard-type fat and high percentage of marbling worked in tandem with Chef Marc's winning menu of 6 uniquely created delicious bites. Dishes included: Caper-Dusted Chicharron: Whipped Mangalitsa Fat French Onion Dip & Caviar, Terrine Of Mangalitsa: Bacon, Foie Gras, Black Truffle, Mustard, Last Years Ramps & Kinome, Mangalitsa Toast: Pork Fat Toasted Brioche, Kalua Pork Liver Mousse, Lardo, Uni & Green Garlic, 2am in Taipei: Mangalitsa Hotpot, Spicy Pork Broth, Black Tofu, Marinated Pork & Enoki Mushroom, Mangalitsa-Fried Rice: Koshihikari Rice, Braised Trotter, Kidney, Cured Heart, Pine Nut, Seaweed & Rapini and to close, Mangalitsa Pie: Pork Fat Lemon Curd, Crispy Lard Crust, Candied Pork Crackling, Duck Egg and Spruce.
The ultimate aim of Cochon555 is to give chefs and consumers something they can sink their teeth into: honest food from real farmers with the goal of a sustainable and profitable relationship for all. Placing the spotlight on heritage breed pigs themselves, each event features a Pop-Up Butcher Demo and Auction, with gifts from Williams-Sonoma and John Boos & Co., which will all benefit Piggy Bank.
"We're incredibly excited to return to San Francisco during our 2017 tour," says Cochon555 Founder Brady Lowe. "This event combines education and innovation in support of heritage breed and family farming. Heritage BBQ puts the focus on global food cultures that represent a centuries-old history of cooking over live fires with native spices and animal breeds. While our focus is local in the agricultural sense, the real concern is about the future - we want our children to be able to enjoy safer, more honest, and delicious food for years to come. We want diners to be able to enjoy better food choices when cooking or eating dinner. And we are standing right there with them, championing transparent food ways and a commitment to what's sustainable and responsible."
Launched in 2015 by Brady Lowe - founder of the Cochon555 US Tour and Taste Network - Piggy Bank is a pig farming sanctuary. Harboring a Noah's Ark-worthy selection of heritage breeds, it provides free genetics and business plans to emerging family farms. Piggy Bank aims to change the future of food by creating a community in which small farmers can learn about safer, more responsible practices and benefit from the sharing of genetics, livestock, and the very information needed to not just survive, but to thrive as small businesses. The Piggy Bank farm, located in Missouri, raises pigs to be gifted to communities dedicated to elevating the cause and expanding through a model of social and agricultural transparency. Piggy Bank is a nonprofit corporation with federal tax exempt status as a public charity under Section 501(c)(3). http://www.piggy-bank.org .
Hyper-Local Culinary Competition Sets Course on Changing the Food System.
Cochon 555, the country’s most talked about culinary competition returns to San Francisco to celebrate family farms, heritage breed pigs and today’s emerging chef community. Attendees of this one-of-a-kind culinary competition embark on a journey to the new hyper-local culinary landscape, one whole pig at a time. The tour is aligned with the modern-day good food movement — notable chefs, barrier-breaking women, artist-like butchers, spirited bartenders, top winemakers, brewers, distillers and brazen pastry talent working together to prepare an epic feast celebrating responsible family farming. Going on its seventh year, Cochon 555 is regarded as the nation’s most flavorful culinary event, from entry to exit, with each bite specially designed to win over the public.
This must-do culinary experience features five top chefs in a one-of-a-kind culinary competition featuring dishes prepared from locally-raised whole heritage breed pigs with endless wine, brews and spirits.