Minneapolis 2015

Sunday, March 1st "National Pig Day"

Cochon 555, the country’s most talked about culinary competition, comes to Minneapolis on Mar. 1, 2015 (National Pig Day) to celebrate family farms, heritage breed pigs and today’s emerging chef community. Attendees of this one-of-a-kind culinary competition embark on a journey to the new hyper-local culinary landscape, one whole pig at a time. The tour is aligned with the modern-day good food movement — notable chefs, barrier-breaking women, artist-like butchers, spirited bartenders, top winemakers, brewers, distillers and brazen pastry talent working together to prepare an epic feast celebrating responsible family farming. Going on its seventh year, Cochon 555 is regarded as the nation’s most flavorful culinary event, from entry to exit, each bite is specially designed to win over the public.This must-do culinary experience features five top chefs in a one-of-a-kind culinary competition featuring over 36 dishes prepared from locally-raised whole heritage breed pigs with endless wine, brews and spirits.

The competing chefs include Gavin Kaysen of Spoon and Stable, Mike DeCamp of La Belle Vie, Steven Brown of Tilia, Jim Christensen of Heyday, and Thomas Boemer of Corner Table. The five chefs, champions to whole hog utilization, will prepare dishes with hopes to win votes from a crowd of hungry gourmands and celebrated judges. The winner goes on to compete for the title of “King or Queen of Porc” at the tour finale, Grand Cochon at Snowmass/Aspen in June and rewarded with a 4-day wine experience in Rioja, Spain’s most prominent wine region.

For the fourth stop of the 2015 tour, Cochon 555 has set course on a new market for their 10-city tour. With an emerging culinary scene, Minneapolis has built an impressive reputation that cannot be ignored. As the city’s dining scene continues to grow, chefs are increasingly placing importance on ethnic diversity and sustainability. With a variety of chefs that are feeding a new hyper-local food culture, Brady Lowe, Founder of Cochon 555, recognized the behind-the-scenes talent in this burgeoning market and saw the need to include the great city of Minneapolis in this year’s competition.

Champion, Head Judge and Sponsor of Cochon 555 Minneapolis, Andrew Zimmern, best known for his Bizarre Foods series on Travel Channel, is beyond excited to welcome the tour to his hometown. “This epic culinary experience coming to Minneapolis is further validation of our position as one of the great food cities in the world” said AZ. “What used to be fly over country is now one of the most vibrant, important cities in America. Minneapolis has amazing museums, cool neighborhoods with great restaurants, a renowned music scene… it’s a city on the move that I call home. It’s a 12-month-a-year paradise, and it’s no wonder we are being recognized as a new food capital.”

The Minneapolis version of this fairy-tale heritage pork experience will include more than 36 chef-prepared dishes in an all-inclusive stand up reception with notable tastings from Wines of Washington. Cochon’s “pop-up” culinary experiences include Wines of Rioja Tapas Bar spotlighting a chef and perfect slices of artisan cured Prosciutto di Parma. Upon arrival, guests will enjoy Buffalo Trace’s “Welcome Punch Reception” paired with delicious welcome bite. Attendees will sample foods at signature experiences like the Artisan Cheese Shop with Surdyk’s and Creminelli, Rappahannock Oyster Shelf featuring Chef Russell Klein of Heritage, and the infamous TarTare Bar featuring Creekstone Farms. Bourbon and whiskey lovers rejoice with the return of the “Perfect Manhattan Experience” featuring Eagle Rare, Buffalo Trace, and Breckenridge Bourbon finished with Luxardo cherries in this hand-prepared classic topped with a special treat from Creminelli. Guests of VIP can enjoy samples from five of the city’s best barkeeps as they compete in Punch Kings – the tour’s whole bottle “meats” golden gloves competition, featuring Breckenridge Bourbon.

We are proud to announce the Pop-Up Butcher Shop with the support of Williams-Sonoma – a live butchering demonstration with Erik Sather of Seward Community Co-op, raising money for the supporting culinary students from The Art Institutes International Minnesota. New sponsors in 2015 includes Whistle Pig’s return of the exclusive Butcher’s Cocktail, Visit Houston featuring notable chefs, and PANNA’s new Simmer app. Finally, before the awards ceremony, the signature “Swine & Sweets” course will be served followed by a spotlight Awards Toast and announcement of the winner. Following the event, all the guests are invited to the Chef’s After Party at Cosmos.

On Friday February 27th, the weekend takeover commences with the Chef’s Course Dinner at Spoon and Stable called “Pig in the Stable”, this is a seated five-course dinner prepared by five guest chefs including Host Chef Gavin Kaysen, Andrew Zimmern, Steven Brown, Erik Anderson, and Doug Flicker featuring courses paired with the Wines of Washington. On Saturday February 28th, Cochon555 and the Large Format Feast “PDC” Dinner will be hosted at Burch Steakhouse spotlighting wines from Felline-Racemi from Puglia, Italy paired with proteins from Creekstone Farms. Enthusiasts who register early for VIP tickets can sign-up for a wine seminar from Wines of Washington with a special guest speaker before Cochon 555, the main event on Sunday afternoon.

LOEWS MINNEAPOLIS HOTEL 601 1st Ave N Minneapolis, MN 55403

When: Sunday, March 1st "National Pig Day"

VIP Admission: 4PM / $200
General Admission: 5PM / $125

Guests can upgrade their ticket online by pre-ordering a copy of EPIC PORC – The Cochon 555 cookbook to be released in August 2015. All Ticket Buyers receive a free year-long PANNA subscription at a $24.95 value. Both ticket levels include endless food and drink options. Specifically, general admission offers over 36 dishes prepared from nose to tail, paired with wines, brews and spirits. VIP grants one hour early access to food, drink and an opportunity to mingle with notable chefs, judges and media.All are invited to the Cochon 555 After Party.

MEDIA INQUIRIES: media-AT-cochon555.com