Some sequels never get old and for pork lovers, Pig Island is one of those annual food events that hasn’t outlived its flavor. Since the move three years ago to Red Hook, Pig Island keeps going and growing strong, returning this Saturday, September 12th, at Erie Basin Park in Red Hook (across from IKEA) right on the Red Hook waterfront. This definitive NYC pork fest sees the return of past chefs and other pork-loving characters along with some new faces and guest stars.
Pig Island’s mission is to support New York State farmers by purchasing heritage hogs with proceeds from the event going directly to support NY farmers. All tickets include all-you-can-eat pork dishes, plus all-you-can-drink beer by Sixpoint, NY State wines, cider and – new this year – whiskeys.
This year’s fest brings Slow Food USA board member and Iowa chef Kurt Michael Friese to town to see what east coast farmers can do to rival the Midwest when it comes to pasture-raised, heritage pork and well-crafted pork dishes.
Chefs and their Pork Creations
This year’s 6th Annual Pig Island includes 20+ chefs serving up specialty pork dishes made from pork sourced locally from Flying Pigs Farms. Here’s the list of chefs from the Pig Island Web site, as of yesterday, September 7, 2015, all prepping their pork dishes for Saturday’s feast (with photos from past Pig Islands to tempt your palate).
- Kurt Michael Friese (founding leader of Slow Food Iowa and Slow Food USA board member, Iowa City restaurant Devotay) will team with Ryan Byrd of Fleisher’s Craft Butchery and serve Chichaquilas with whole roasted pork and Rock ‘N’ Rye Mojo sauce
- Butcher Shop Hudson and Charles will serve two dishes: Porchetta with orange, fennel and peperoncini served over cannelini bean and bitter green bean salad with orange vinaigrette; plus, Larded, Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies
- East Village Favorite Northern Spy will have White Corn Johnnycakes with Mojo Rubbed Pork and Stone Fruit Chutney
- Sotto 13 – Chef Ed Cotton will be cooking up Pork-Butt Corn Dogs
- Thomas Perone (Pig Guy NYC) will be returning to serve up Agape Pulled Pork Sandwich: Grecian Style Pulled Pork, Crispy Skin, Pork Belly, Feta and Spiced up Tzatziki
- Michael Jenkins (Butter) returns for the sixth year serving up Jerk-Pulled Pork and pickled peppers
- Humberto Guallpa (Executive Chef of Calle Dao) will prepare Chinese-Cuban Roasted Pig in Textures: head cheese terrine, compress pork butts, quinoa pork belly, housing ginger sauce, crispy chicharron
- Pitmaster Robbie Richter, the original pitmaster for Hill Country BBQ and Fatty ‘Cue Brooklyn will have Pig Shawarma
- Egg Restaurant’s Evan Hanczor and George Weld will serve up a Braised Bacon End Sandwich with Salsa Verde and Egg Hot Sauce
- Martin Høedholt of Revolving Dansk/Copenhagen Street Dogs will serve “The Chili Klaus”: Rød pølse (Danish red hot dog) topped with Chili Klaus ketchup, deviled egg cream, jalapeno coleslaw and bacon
- Ovelia – Peter Giannakas will make Ovelia Loukaniko: a house-made pork sausage
- Ends Meat – Chef John Ratliff will serve Pork Nuggets and Bratwurst
- Erika Nakamura and Jocelyn Guest of The Breslin Bar & Dining Room will create a diverse sausage platter
- Arrogant Swine – Chef Tyson Ho will be serving up Whole Hog Loatian-Style LARB with fresh chilis, fish sauce and herbs topped with a spicy pineapple garnish and a ginger-grapefruit foam
- Route 66 Smokehouse – Pitmaster Bill Kooper will serve Smoked Pork Lettuce Wrap Tacos with chillies, crispy pig skin, and garlic
- Danny Mena and Evan Smith of Hecho en Dumbo – Torta Ahogada: Pork carnitas slider with pickled white onion, Rancho Gordo Heirloom beans, smothered in a choice of salsa, ranging from a very mild salsa two a raging hot chile de arbol salsa spiked with clove
- King Phojanakong from Tito King’s Kitchen at Jimmy’s No. 43 will serve Whole Roasted Filipino-style “Lechon” Pig
- Pig Guy NYC Thomas Perone will cook up Agape Pulled Pork Sandwich: Grecian Style Pulled Pork, Crispy Skin, Pork Belly, Feta and Spiced up Tzatziki
- Roni-Sue’s Chocolates will serve Nasty Bits: Bacon/Chile Pretzels
- Chef Jesse Jones (Chef Jesse Concepts) – Apple Cider Brined Whole Hog with Apple Jack Brandy BBQ Sauce
- Neuman’s Kitchen will serve up 7 Deadlly Sins of Swine!
- East Village Meat Market collaboration with Flying Pigs Farm
- Plus, vegetarian options from Bittergreen’s “Veggie Oasis” and NYC Hot Sauce Company’s Fresh Hatch, New Mexico Green Chiles
Beverages include craft beer, New York State wine, cider and whiskies, such as:
- Down East Cider
- Original Sin Cider
- Queens Courage Gin
- High West Whiskey
- Hudson Whiskey
- Van Brunt Stillhouse
- Widow Jane
- Austin Eastciders
The organizers at Food Karma Projects have scaled down ticket sales to make the experience more enjoyable, and have added group packages.
General Admission (21+). Includes admission for one person, unlimited beer and pork samples; cider, wine and additional beverages also included in this admission. Kids 12 and under free with paying adult. $85.00
VIP Table for Six. Private tent, along with six tickets and wine service (food and beer runners not included). Take a break from the sun while sipping on wines from our expanded VIP wine program. All sales are final, although the tickets are transferable. Kids 12 and under free with paying adult. $1,000.00
Get your tickets here.
If you loved the chefs’ pork creations from past Pig Island fests, you can recreate the food and flavor memories yourself in your own kitchen!
Jimmy Carbone, the producer of Pig Island, along with James Beard Award winning cookbook author Rachel Wharton created a cookbook “full of porcine goodness. I Like Pig: The Pig Island Cookbook tells the story of small, family-owned pig farms and their journey to the big city marketplace where renown chefs create delectable pork dishes at the outdoor cooking festival, Pig Island.” The book contains recipes and tips for cooking pork from New York City chefs, regional farmers and butchers, as well as photo essays showing the unique and multi-faceted journeys and artistry of taking a pasture-raised hog from farm to Pig Island table.
The book (in e-book/digital download format only – $1.99) is available to download here.
Here are a few of the dishes chefs have shared recipes for that you can try your hand at making at home or at your next barbecue to impress your pork-loving friends:
- Country-Style Ribs Char Siu from The Art of Eating In author Cathy Erway and award-winning chef Noah Berland
- Crispy-Fried Pork Skin by Doug Keiles, Pit Master for the Ribs Within Competition BBQ Team in Hillsborough, NJ
- Embarrassingly Easy Oven-Baked Ribs courtesy of The Piggery, an Ithaca, NY, heritage hog farm
- Farm-Stand Choucroute Garni by East Village (NYC) restaurant Jimmy’s No. 43
- Jesse Jones’ Strudel with Apple-Braised Pork Shanks and Sweet Hannah Sauce by NJ Chef Jesse Jones
- Joe Doe’s Lard Biscuits from Joe Dobias, chef and owner of Joe & Misses Doe in NYC
- King’s Lumpia Shanghai by King Phojanakong, chef and owner of Kuma Inn and Umi Nom
- Lavender-Braised Pork Shoulder by Elizabeth Schula, co-founder of Saltie
- Leftover Pulled Pork with Big White Beans by author Rachel Wharton
- Maple Bacon Sticky Buns from Heather Carlucci, co-founder of Chefs for The Marcellus.
- Olive-Brined Tenderloin by Peter Giannakas, chef and owner of Ovelia Psistaria and Bar in Astoria, Queens
- Pasta with Shoulder Bacon, Beer & Cream from Jimmy’s No. 43