Cochon555 is proud to announce some of the dynamic experiences that make up its 2017 lineup for New York City. A hyper-local happening with a national profile, the event celebrates the idea that the pig is the perfect protein. A portion of all event proceeds also go to Piggy Bank, a charity farm-in-the-making that gifts free genetics to family farmers in return for business plans that are shared online in the name of open-access agriculture (OAA).
Expanding the circle of talent at the heart of Cochon555 events, there are now two satellite competitions to complement the original whole-animal tilt. The Somm Smackdown pits 5 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 5 barkeeps, challenging them to each make their own twist on the original, historic large-group drinking format: cocktail punch. This year’s sommelier and bartender roster is listed below. Watch videos from the past year at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9WkeHHOOqJY and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7pN__l9ojfo:
The 5 Competing Chefs
Chef Nicole Gajadhar of Saxon + Parole
Chef Ryan Bartlow of Quality Eats
Chef Greg Baxtrom of Olmfsted
Chef Aaron Hoskins of Birds & Bubbles
Chef Chris Szyjka of Chefs Club
The 5 Competing Somms
Aaron Thorp of Le Coucou/The Wine Shop
Missy Neill of Lure Fishbar
Jared Fischer of Locanda Verde
Nicole Hakli of ACME
Erik Segelbaum of STARR Restaurants
The 5 Competing Barkeeps
Bryan Schneider of Quality Eats
Antanas Samkus of the Beatrice Inn
Anthony Bohlinger of Maison Premiere
Mike Bohn of Olmsted
On Saturday, January 28th at 7:00PM, Chef’s Course BESPOKE: An Evening of Culinary Modernity, will be hosted by Chef Brad Farmerie of Public, and will co-feature Michelin-Star Chef Matt Lambert of Musket Room and Scandinavian talent Chef Mads Refslund (ex. Noma and Acme). The evening will take as its theme “Culinary Modernity,” with each toque creating one course that embodies their own conception of the night’s core ideas. The final course will be a group collaboration, in which all three chefs will cook one family-style course representative of what they believe to be modernity.
Wine and drink matching for the night will be driven by the luscious and complex wine pairings from Wines of Germany, and will also include a pre-dinner cocktail reception at Ghost Donkey hosted by House of Angostura. To close the evening, Nicole Gajadhar of Saxon + Parole will prepare a pastry course featuring Perfect Puree of Napa Valley. A special guest will be in attendance as a guide of sorts – our own culinary Virgil – illuminating for all in attendance the ideas which define our culinary time and inspire Cochon555 events. Tickets for the dinner are $125 and can be purchased online.
“Our BESPOKE dinner series was created as a way to use an intimate and luxurious food-and-wine experience to engage with the very ideas that help define our culinary time – and future,” says Cochon555 founder Brady Lowe. “We’ve tried to evolve the experience of our main event with the addition of barkeep and sommelier competitions, and this year’s roster should provide some palate-expanding answers for how both cocktails and wines can enliven the rich, complex flavors created when cooking heritage breed pigs.”
Where: Saxon + Parole
When: Saturday February 28th, Reception 7:00 p.m. Dinner 7:30 p.m. sharp
Reserve: To buy tickets, www.cochon555.com/nyc
At the center of every Cochon555 event is a whole-hog cooking competition for a cause. This year, a group of cutting-edge young chefs from across the city joins us, including Nicole Gajadhar from Saxon + Parole; Ryan Bartlow of Quality Eats; Greg Baxtrom of Olmsted; Aaron Hoskins of Birds & Bubbles; and Chris Szyjka of Chefs Club. One week before the event, each chef receives a 200-pound heritage breed pig from a family farmer, and they are tasked with creating 6 dishes for over 450+ people. With dozens of bites from iconic local chefs, boutique distillers, and artisan winemakers, the event is akin to a tasting menu with endless portions taken standing up.
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 from family farms – 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 a classic pastry presented by Perfect Puree of Napa Valley.
Cochon555 events are social, energetic theaters for innovative spirit, wine, and cocktail experiences. Libations include a welcome punch by DRY Sparkling and Buffalo Trace; 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 hand-crafted caramels; 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 “5 Winemakers” banner will feature Scholium Project; Pax Wine Cellars; and more. Further tables include Wines of the World, Azzurro Wine Company, and a host of artisanal cider and beer offerings.
Tickets for general admission start at $125; VIP tickets (early admission + exclusive sommelier and cocktail competition tastings) are $200; and BESPOKE tickets $400 (includes super early admission + exclusive private tasting and tour of Somm-Selected wines and the Barkeep competition by a Cochon555 director on Sunday; and a donation to Piggy Bank charity). To purchase tickets, visit the website: http://cochon555.com/2017-tour/nyc/
Where: Weylin, 175 Broadway, Brooklyn, NY 11211
When: 4 p.m. for VIP entry, 5 p.m. for General Admission
About the Cochon555 US Tour
The Cochon555 US Tour executes a yearly host of authentic, hyper-local food events focused on raising awareness for heritage breed pigs through a nose-to-tail pig cooking competition. This epic pork feast visits 16 major cities in North America during 2017. The tour is comprised of an array of live expressions including Heritage Fire (live-fire); Heritage BBQ (global grilling cultures), and Grand Cochon (national whole-hog championship). Cochon555 cultivates a long-term impact for heritage species, raised by family farms in top culinary markets in North America. Both educational and inspirational messages are circulated among 16,000 guests; 2,200+ chefs; 150+ family farms; and 16 culinary schools. Since 2009, 50,000+ consumers have experienced heritage pork for the first time, more than $500,000 has been donated to charities, and over $750,000 has been paid directly to our farmers. For more details and videos of events, visit www.cochon555.com or follow @cochon555 on Twitter and Instagram.
About Piggy Bank
Launched in 2015 by Cochon555 founder Brady Lowe, Piggy Bank is a pig farming sanctuary. Harboring a Noah’s Ark-worthy selection of heritage breeds, it provides free genetics and access to shared 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 thrive as small businesses. The Piggy Bank farm, to be located in Missouri, raises heritage breed pigs to be gifted to communities, while building a model of agricultural transparency. Piggy Bank is a nonprofit corporation with federal tax exempt status as a public charity under Section 501(c)(3). Follow the Piggy Bank conversation on Twitter @PiggyBankOrg. For more information, watch the video http://j.mp/PIGGY_BANK or visit www.piggy-bank.org.
Photo credit: Galdones Photography / Cochon 555