The most dynamic culinary festival in North America is back on the road with its national nose-to- tail pig cooking tour. Cochon555 brings its 2017 edition—which will hit some 16 cities—to Seattle on Sunday, April 30th, and the focus of the festivities will be culinary community and education. At the heart of all Cochon555 events lies a culinary competition to promote local family farming and global traditions.
Seattle’s event will be held at the Fairmont Olympic Hotel. From bartenders and distillers to chefs and barkeeps, some of the city’s most celebrated hospitality talents will take guests on a journey that’s equally dedicated to safe foodways, deliciousness, and whole-hog cookery. To further champion the good food movement, a portion of all proceeds goes to Cochon555’s sister charity, Piggy Bank.
Five local chefs are each given one whole, heritage breed pig and one week to prepare the whole animal of 200 pounds. Each chef must present a “Judge’s Plate” of 6 dishes scored on utilization; cooking techniques; and overall flavor. A panel of 20 notable judges selects a winner, who will then be crowned Seattle’s “Prince or Princess of Pork.”
Running in tandem with the main cook-off are the Somm Smackdown (sommeliers facing off for the best pig/wine match) and Punch Kings featuring Breckenridge Distillery (barkeeps battling in whole-bottle competition). The winners of all events will be flown to Chicago to compete in the winner-takes- all finale, Grand Cochon, to be held this year on October 1.
Looking back on the 2016 event in Seattle, Chef Josh Henderson of Huxley Wallace Collective (Skillet, Great State Burger, Westward) won with a Large White / Duroc Cross breed of pig raised by Pure Country Pork. Large Whites, also known as Yorkshires, are the most recorded breed of pigs in history; very muscular with yielding lean meat and little back fat. Duroc pigs are fast growing animals yielding sweet and juicy meat due to their high amounts of intramuscular marbling. The combination of these two breeds worked in tandem with Chef Josh’s winning menu of six uniquely created delicious bites.
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, which benefits Piggy Bank, a farm devoted to providing free heritage breed pigs to small farms in exchange for transparent business plans that are posted online.
“We’re incredibly excited to return to Seattle during our 2017 tour,” says Cochon555 founder Brady Lowe. “This event combines education and innovation in support of a return to heritage breed and family farming. The impact is local, but it is also about the future – we want our children to be able to enjoy safer, more honest, and delicious food for years to come”.
Tickets for general admission start at $125; VIP tickets (early admission + exclusive sommelier and cocktail competition tastings) are $200.
- Where: Fairmont Olympic Hotel
- When: Sunday, April 30th
- Time: 4:00 pm for VIP entry, 5:00 pm for General Admission
Buy your tickets here.