Cochon 555: Win Tix

Suwee piggy. You could be at this porky festival in Napa on March 6, 2011.


Oh, for the love of pork, it’s Cochon 555. Roasting it up Napa style.

For the third year, organizers of this national porcine-centric tour bring together five local chefs, five local vintners and five 175 pound heritage breed pigs for a whole hog experience on March 6, 2011 at the Culinary Institute at Greystone. And everyone worth their trotters will be there.

The idea: Each of the chef-teams gets a pig to prepare head-to-toe to be judged on presentation, utilization and flavor. Twenty local judges (including chefs, farmers, writers and food dorks like BiteClub) get to crown the local Prince or Princess of Porc who travels to the Food and Wine Classic in Aspen and competes in the final for King or Queen.

Local chefs competing in Napa include our own Duskie Estes and John Stewart of Zazu and Black Pig Meats, Curtis de Fede and Tyler Rodde of Napa’s Oenotri, Charlie Parker of Oakland’s Plum, Dave Cruc of ad hoc in Yountville and Brandon Sharp of Solbar in Calistoga. The pigs: Red Wattle from Walnut Keep Farm and vineyard, Mangalista from Suisun Valley Farm, Berkshire from Newman Farm, Yorkshire from Christian Brothers Ranch and Durco/Berkshire from Devils’ Gulch Ranch. Portions of the proceeds will benefit sustainable farming of heritage-breed pigs.

Getting hungry? Everyone gets a place at the table as diners feast off a whole roasted pig, sample wines, taste a variety of unique piggy products, along with local cheese and Hog Island oysters and rub elbows with local piggerati. Chef John Fink of The Whole Beast will cook three milk-fed suckling pigs brined in an apple Chardonnay fennel bath.

Think you need to be there? BiteClub’s got the hook-up. Just convince me why you and a friend should get the TWO tickets I’m holding in my hot little hands. Pig tattoos are inspiring, as are demonstrated commitments to chicharones and bacon. Add your comment below to convince me!

One winner will receive 2 tickets (value $125 each) to the event. Please make sure to use a REAL email address (which only I can see) so I can contact you if you win. Winner will be notified Thursday night, March 3 and have until noon on Friday to respond. Full rules. Good luck!


26 thoughts on “Cochon 555: Win Tix

  1. So my mom has been obsessed with pigs (both alive and well, and dead and delicious) for her whole life. Like, lived on a small farm, had a cute little pet pig, and then decided to eat it, kind of obsession. She passed that love on to me. Anything pig related and I’m hooked. Pork belly, far and away, is my weakness but waft the scent of baby back ribs, roasted pork loin or sizzling bacon in my direction and I’m running, full sprint, to devour it. I LOVE me some pigs. They happen to be one of the few animals that I can say, without cringing, are both adorable and delectable. I missed this event last year and would literally kick myself in the shins, if I missed the opportunity to nab a free ticket. So pick me, because I’d love to go worship at the house of pig this weekend.

  2. Good Morning Bite Club,
    I’m missing Pigs & Pinot next weekend held in Healdsburg, CA so can I be the lucky one to wine tickets for Cachon 555 this Sunday? Please let this pig lover make the drive to St. Helena this Sunday!

  3. My love of all things porcine started when I bagged my first wild boar. Bringing that beast from field to table cemented my respect for that noble animal. Since then, my wife and I have pursued our love of piggy goodness. At the top of our list is being able to meet with 10 time World Pork Shoulder Champion Chris Lilly and pick his brains over what makes championship BBQ, all the while munching tidbits such as crispy pig ear, tongue and cheek. Last year we attended Bite Club’s booth at the Handcar Regatta to watch chef Roger deconstruct a 60 lb pig. Our interest and enthusiasm were such that at the end of the demonstration, he gave us an entire rig section of the pig. I bbq’d it using my own rib sauce, which has won the amateur BBQ Sauce competition the last 2 years in a row at the Sonoma County Harvest Fair. It doesn’t get much fresher than that! And just this Monday, my wife and I escaped the cutting room floor and appeared on Andrew Zimmern’s Bizarre Foods San Francisco episode, where we were filmed munching all manner of offal, including pig trotter meat balls with crispy fried pig face, all loving coated in Chris Cosentino’s “Brainaise”. Yep, brain mayonnaise. YUM! …or as my wife proclaimed on the show “…it’s like butter!” We love pig and will go wherever we can find good things to be had, so you can be sure we will cherish this opportunity. That, and it would also make a great, early birthday gift for my wife. Thanks in advance!

  4. I will have died and gone to piggie heaven if you pick me and my pork lovin’ boyfriend to go! I was born year of the boar and simply cannot get enough…..Cochon 555 would make my 2011 the best year ever!!!!

    Thanks for your consideration!! 😉

  5. My dog is named “Little Pig.” When people ask me why I grow gobs of veggies, I reply, with a mix of distain and dispair, that the city won’t let me grow a pig. I grow veggies that I then take and feed to my sister’s pigs.

    Bacon is meat candy!!!

  6. I grew up eating chicharone salad…so good and super easy to make. Since my mom likes pig things, my brother had my niece dress a a cute pig for halloween years ago, her face was so pink you couldn’t tell if it was part of the costume or the makeup.

    My boyfriend loves bacon and even battered and fried it which was kind of weird. He then smoked bacon so we could stuff them into the hamburger patties we were cooking. He just loves pork in general and his pulled pork is the yummiest I’ve tasted in a while.

    My son loves pork sausage with maple syrup. That kid can put about 10 down and still eat more…I have no idea where it all goes tho.

    I also cook a dish called jugacida, which requires bacon and bacon grease.

    I would love to take someone in my family with me to this, we all need a little fun time.

  7. I began raising Duroc pics when I was 21. Everything about pigs intrigue me. They are the only non-ruminant farm animal (horses excluded). They are smarter than most dogs. They have a ridiculously short gestation period. They can be house broken and make great pets, or grow to well over 300 pounds. They get along with all other animals, and they hate mud. They are an awesome animal to raise.

    I’ve had the fortune, and I do mean fortune, to skin, gut and cut up pigs that were killed only minutes before. At first it felt like an impossible task, but then I realized what the experience would teach me. Now, I truly appreciate where my food comes form, because I know what it is to raise these intelligent, kind creatures. It is a difficult struggle sometimes to come to terms with the pork on my plate, but I would rather deal with that decision than blindly eat a cut of unrecognizable meat on my plate.

    As pork goes, they are at the top for versatility. They are the center piece of traditional American meals where the family gathers together, just as they are the biggest trend in meat from candied bacon in cupcakes to the great comeback of lard.

    I am a huge fan of Cochon555 for it’s recognition of excellent pork, and it’s work to elevate the people that make tasty and creative meals out of good pigs. It would be an honor to attend the whole hog experience, especially at Greystone.

  8. I can only disclose what I know about bacon, pork belly, chops, sweet skin chips and aweful tijiuana mama that my boy loves to find in the most random places. Bacon, we first meet in the city where a tattooed bacon-lipped man ordered our sweet sugar peppered bacon from me….Pork Belly, whether it is with the delicate quail egg at Syrah or the slabs at Santi, I’m in! My Chops are best found at willowside, where they aren’t afraid of fat. If you haven’t had skin chips hot off a hog well we simply can’t be friends and you deserve to eat the aweful byproduct of pigs that is tijiuana mamas!

  9. the famous little piggy:
    this little piggy went to market
    this little piggy went home
    this little piggy had roast beef
    this little piggy had none
    and this little piggy went
    “wee wee wee” all the way home

    This little piggy went to Napa
    This little piggy went Cochon 555
    This little piggy had roast pork
    This little piggy had some more
    And this little piggy went
    “Nom nom nom” all the way to Sonoma!

  10. I’ll keep this short: 5 chefs + 5 pigs + 5 wineries = good times! Would be so excited to get a chance to go to Cochon 555!

  11. Born and raised from the Islands…this is an ultimate prize!!!…We know our pig, OH YES we do!!! We eat pork blood with meat/intestines (“dinuguan” a.k.a. “chocolate meat”) to ears, meat from roasted pig’s face (“sisig” just like al pastor but better best with BEER). Of course, the crunchy skin and meat of “lechon” (whole roasted suckling pig) dipped in “lechon sauce” (pig’s liver sauce). Do not forget the pig’s feet (“paksiw pata”) or “chicharon flowers” from pork’s stomach and intestines); “bopis” (kidneys, lungs, etc), and “liempo” (pork belly roast). Of course we have the most delicious “longanisa” (pork sausages or portuguese sausage)…And do not forget the most famous of all the “pork adobo” (pork stew with soy and vinegar and of course garlic) Oh don’t forget SPAM…YUM-Oink!
    Got RICE?
    Just a quote borrowed from Emeril “PORK FAT RULES”!!!

  12. It’s easy to spin tales of loving BBQ and bacon, but Cochon 555 is about so much more. It’s about the farm to table lifestyle, and everything in between. That’s what makes Cochon 555 event so inspiring, everything that happens from farm to table rolled in to one happy event. It would be a dream come true to participate in Cochon 555 in all it’s glory, and to share the experience with like-minded souls. In the summer of 2009 we bought our first pig from a local farmer, half a pig actually, but you have to start somewhere. Our first project – trimming the jowl off the head and making our own dry cured guanciale. This was followed a few weeks later by our first home-made salami, dry aged for 3 months in our wine cellar. A few months later we made our first home-cured pancetta. Along the way we made several batches of sausage and enjoyed the many hams, roast and chops that are part and parcel of every pig. To round out the experience, we made a big tub of lard from the back fat, and batch of Fergus Henderson’s trotter gear from the feet. Wow, was that fun! In a bit over a year, it was all gone and time to start over. We went back to the same farmer last fall and bought a whole pig this time. This time we started with “proscuitto”, and so we have an 18 lb dry cured ham hanging in our wine cellar. Of course, we have already made more pancetta. And we bought a smoker to smoke our bacon, hams and other yummy smoked pork goodies. There is nothing we love more than sharing these experiences and foods with others, at our home and where ever we go. Cochon 555 would be a wonderful opportunity to share this passion with the most passionate farm to table food lovers in Wine Country. For the love of all things local, and all things pork, I beseech you to share your tickets with me so that I can share the love at Cochon 555.

  13. O Pig, sweet piggy! How can I adequately praise your succulent qualities? Would a pig by any other name smell as sweet? Well, if it was fryin’ up in my skillet on Sunday morning with some hash browns and eggs it just might. Here’s the deal: I am an “all things pig” fan from way back when, and could never possibly afford these tickets. I promise I will take wonderful pig pics, blog about it all at your site and become your devoted servant forever (well, two out of three aint bad!) should you grant me this one request: Let me go unto the pig event. Pleeeeeeeaaaassseee! PS: My middle name is “Babe” as in the movie star with the pink curly tail and great attitude.

  14. Well, I am not quite sure where to begin. My love of pork is well chronicled by friends, family and co-workers! Pork Belly is my idea of a perfect meal! I am one third of a KCBS sanctioned BBQ Team called S’Wine Country BBQ and our slow smoked pulled pork sandwiches are the stuff of legend! Our motto is “We will serve no swine before it’s time”. We placed first in peoples choice and critics choice in last years “Guys Can Cook Too” competition. Pork is in my blood; at least that’s what my cholesterol results tell me. 😉

    I am the guy that brings chocolate covered bacon to work; entered my chocolate chip, bacon cookies with maple glaze in our office bake off.
    I would absolutely love to see what these awesome chefs have in store for these hogs! I would feel honored to relish in the porky deliciousness that awaits the ticket holders of this awesome event.

    I whole hoggedly await your call of soo-ee to pick up tickets!

  15. We raised two pigs while growing up, Zsa Zsa the boar and Eva the boar. I think these two pigs would be happy if my sister and I were able to go to this event in their honor and cheer for our favorite pig goddess Duskie Estes!

  16. I work at a business with 100+ employees. The other day, I realized the Director knows my name. It’s not because of my work ethic, or attention to detail. To my pleasant surprise it is for my recipe for apple-wood smoked bacon, dark chocolate, and toffee chip cookies.

    The shelf-life of these cookies is 2 days due to the bacon, but they never last longer than 30 minutes at any party, potluck, or if I leave them unattended in my kitchen.

    Bacon + dark chocolate + toffee = awesomeness.

    I would love to go to Cochon 555.

  17. Ok, I have no amazing pig story to tell where I traveled to France and used a wild hog to find the biggest truffle hidden deep in the earth. I don’t have a pig tattoo; I don’t rescue pigs, have a pet pig or have ever cuddled with a living pig ( what I do with chicharones in the privacy of my own home is my business). I do come from a family of cops who dedicate their lives to community service and embrace the nick name “pig”. We collect pig related trinkets and when my uncle passed ( a 17 year veteran of the Long Beach PD) he had over 600 items in his collection. Honestly, I just think it would be ironic/hilarious to watch my husband ( a local cop) feasting on a whole pig. That’s a photo for the mantel. Now, back to the pig tattoo idea….

  18. As a BBQ aficionado and a private purveyor of all things pork and BBQ for family and friends, I would like to see how the big boys and girls take care of business from snout to tail. I know my way around pork bellies, ribs, and shoulders. Creating rubs, glazes, and BBQ sauces is my hobby. I just got done with a batch of Black Forest-style bacon, and the ones who have it have sent rave reviews. I would be delighted to have the opportunity to attend.

  19. Porkarama! could not think of a better way to spend my actual birthday than watching my pal John Stewart tear apart a nice little piggy. I floss with pig whiskers thats how much i love the fine swine.
    nuff said lay em on me please, piggy please

    1. My husband and I are faithful followers of the Holy Redeemer Church of Bacon. While we don’t have any pig tattoos, our family motto is GO PORK, GO BACON, GO CHICHARONES! We recently discovered the chicharones from 4505 Meats and we are pretty sure those are the best things ever (next to bacon anyway).


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