This year’s Cochon 555 is a pork-centric event at Chelsea Piers and featured an all-female lineup of top-notch toques: Missy Robbins (A Voce), Alex Guarnaschelli (Butter), Leah Cohen (Pig and Khao), Elizabeth Falkner (Krescendo), Sueños chef Sue Torres and Shanna Pacifico (Back Forty West). Each chef will turn a whole heritage-breed hog into a snout-to-tail smorgasbord for 20 judges including and Hearth’s Marco Canora—and 400 guests, who will crown one the Princess of Porc – and that was Missy Robbins of A Voce.
Cochon 555 is a national tour that introduces, educates, and preserves heritage pigs. This tour starts at New York City each year and the 14-city tour. As always, winners in each city will go on to compete for the title of King (or Queen) of Porc at the Grand Cochon at the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen on June 16, 2013.
Sara Bigelow of The Meat Hook took apart an entire Berkshire hog from Percy Thomson Meadows in Bethlehem, Connecticut. Five wineries offered vintages that paired well with the sweet and salty pork dishes, and a friendly “Punch Kings” competition brought Breckenridge Bourbon Whiskey to center stage. A bourbon bar, cheese bar, small breweries like the Brooklyn Brewery and Anchor Steam, to make sure that there was plenty to eat and not leave thirsty.
Various dishes from the chefs: Crispy Pata (Cohen), Maguey worm salt dusted pork crackling, mustard greens, smoked pork belly (Torres), Pork shoulder soup dumpling (Guarnaschelli), (Faulkner), Pork face nuggets & limequat capirinhas (Pacifico)
Chef Robbins of A Voce won with an elegant Italian menu of bacon tortelli, pork meatball filled with ricotta, “ham and eggs” with black truffle shavings and fontina, and slices of pig’s head terrine with Calabrian chili. Chef Cohen of Pig & Khao made Asian influenced pork dishes like a 4-day fermented pork sausage and crispy pata with pickled vegetables and a spicy pineapple shot. Chef Faulkner cooked with the Red Wattle pig and created lard biscuits topped with pork belly confit, buckwheat farfalle pasta with Red Wattle sugo, and chicharrones. Chef Shanna Pacifico of Back Forty West served a Brazilian influenced menu with feijoada, glazed and smoked Canadian bacon, and a sublime limequat capirinhas paired with pork face nuggets. Chef Guarnaschelli created a Chinese theme, as she was aware that yesterday was the first day of Chinese New Year.
To view more photos of this meal, please view the slideshow below (or CLICK HERE for my photo set):
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