What do you get when you combine five chefs, five pigs, five winemakers, five sommeliers, five barkeeps and more? Cochon555, of course, which is an epic culinary competition that’s returning to Minneapolis on February 21.
So what exactly is Cochon555? It’s when five chefs cook five heritage breed pigs in a friendly competition for a cause. The food is local, the cause is global and while Cochon555 continues to up its commitment to the good food movement, this year’s tour will benefit Piggy Bank, a genetic sanctuary that will provide free heritage breed pigs and business plans to emerging family farms.
This year’s competing chefs include John Ng of Zen Box Izakaya, Christopher Nye of Spoon and Stable, Jorge Guzman of Surly Brewing Company/Brewers Table, Carrie Summer & Lisa Carlson of Chef Shack Ranch and James Winberg, Mike Brown & Bob Gerken of Travail Kitchen & Amusements.
The five chefs will prepare a maximum of six dishes from one whole hog, and the preparations will help them win votes from a crowd of hungry gourmands and celebrated judges. The winner of the regional event will be announced as the “Prince of Porc” and go on to compete for the national title of “King of Porc” at Grand Cochon, the tour finale, held at the Viceroy in Snowmass / Aspen on June 18.
This year’s judges include Host Chef Tim Fischer of Loews Minneapolis Hotel, Joy Summers of EATER, Steven Joel Brown of Tilia, Chef Scott K. Pampuch, Pat Weber of Mise en Place, David Newman of Newman Farms, Sue Zelickson, Daniel Klein of the Perennial Plate, Stephanie March of Minneapolis St. Paul Magazine, Jessica Fleming of St. Paul Pioneer Press. Plus, new this year, these five Sommeliers will help determine the winner: Nico Giraud of Meritage and Foreign Legion, Erin Rolek of The Bachelor Farmer, New France Wine Company’s Bill Summerville, Nick Rancone of Corner Table and Brie Roland of St. Genevieve of the Sommelier Smackdown.
For more information and to get your tickets, please click here.
And to get a better idea of what this is all about, check out the Cochon555 trailer video: