WBEZ | Baconfest http://www.wbez.org/tags/baconfest Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Baconfest Chicago 2013: and the Golden Rasher goes to... http://www.wbez.org/blogs/louisa-chu/2013-04/baconfest-chicago-2013-and-golden-rasher-goes-106763 <p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/baconfest2013poet.jpg" style="height: 413px; width: 620px;" title="Baconfest Chicago 2013 bacon poetry reading by contest winner Steve Nordin (WBEZ/Louisa Chu)" /></p><div class="image-insert-image ">The rumours of bacon&#39;s death have been greatly exaggerated by the food media for years. Oh the <em>Schadenfreude</em>&nbsp;they must have felt during last fall&#39;s worldwide bacon shortage prediction, which <a href="http://www.npr.org/2012/10/05/162342072/bacon-shortage-is-hogwash"><u>proved to be &quot;hogwash&quot;</u></a>.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&quot;Long live bacon!&quot; was the implied collective cry at the <a href="http://baconfestchicago.com/"><u>fifth annual Baconfest Chicago</u></a>&nbsp;held Saturday at UIC Forum. Manifested as bacon eats and drinks from 128 restaurants, this year BFC donated $50,000 to the <a href="http://www.chicagosfoodbank.org/site/PageServer"><u>Greater Chicago Food Depository</u></a>. As always the 3,000 attendees themselves delivered with thousands of pounds of donation food too.</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/baconfest2013browntrout.jpg" style="height: 413px; width: 620px;" title="Brandade fritters with spicy bacon lime hollandaise by Browntrout chef/owner Sean Sanders in Chicago (WBEZ/Louisa Chu)" /></div><div class="image-insert-image ">I was <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/louisa-chu/2012-04/source-all-bacon-baconfest-chicago-2012-98348"><u>back as a judge</u></a> for the coveted Golden Rasher award for the chef&#39;s &quot;Most Creative Use of Bacon&quot; at the lunch session, again with the <em>Chicago Reader</em>&#39;s <u><a href="https://twitter.com/MikeSula">Mike Sula</a>.</u>&nbsp;This year we were joined by Alinea, Next, and Aviary co-owner <a href="https://twitter.com/nickkokonas"><u>Nick Kokonas</u></a>; Food Network&#39;s <em>Sandwich King</em> <a href="https://twitter.com/JeffMauro"><u>Jeff Mauro</u></a>, and <em>LTH Forum</em> co-owner Ron Kaplan (<a href="http://www.lthforum.com/bb/memberlist.php?mode=viewprofile&amp;u=127"><u>aka&nbsp;ronnie_suburban</u></a>).</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/baconfest2013barn.jpg" style="height: 413px; width: 620px;" title="Bacon Bacon Bacon Baby Back Bones: bacon fat slather, bacon infused dry rub, bacon fat mop, bacon wrapped hickory smoked rib, bacon guajillo BBQ sauce by Barn &amp; Company Pitmaster Gary Wiviott in Chicago (WBEZ/Louisa Chu)" /></div><div class="image-insert-image ">We each hit the floor on our own to taste 13 dishes then convened back in bacon judges&#39; chambers to confer. Our general consensus: a lot of great dishes, many of which we wanted more &mdash; but creative?</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/baconfest2013untitled.jpg" style="height: 413px; width: 620px;" title="The “Love Me Tender”: Pork belly panino with smoked banana, truffle caramel, cashew butter by Untitled chef Joseph Heppe in Chicago (WBEZ/Louisa Chu)" /></div><div class="image-insert-image ">This says more about how high we&#39;ve raised the creative bacon bar, especially in Chicago. Bacon donuts? Been there. Bacon ice cream? Eaten that. Bacon powder made with rendered bacon fat and tapioca maltodextrin? Made that.</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/baconfest2013onenorth.jpg" style="height: 414px; width: 620px;" title="Pork belly adobo by One North chef Will Pagulayan in Chicago (WBEZ/Louisa Chu)" /></div><div class="image-insert-image ">We&#39;re a tough crowd, as a city, and especially in that room Saturday afternoon. A well deserved kudos to all.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">In the end, the Baconfest 2013 Golden Rasher award for the chef&#39;s &quot;Most Creative Use of Bacon&quot; at the lunch session went to Chef Joseph Rose at Lockwood for his slow poached egg, bacon ragout, bacon dashi, and nori.</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/baconfest2013lockwood.jpg" style="height: 413px; width: 620px;" title="Slow poached egg, bacon ragout, bacon dashi, nori by Lockwood chef Joseph Rose in Chicago (WBEZ/Louisa Chu)" /></div><div class="image-insert-image ">Rose just took over at the historic Palmer House hotel last October, which lost its critical heat when EL Ideas chef/owner <a href="https://twitter.com/PhillipFoss"><u>Phillip Foss</u></a> left way back in 2010. Lockwood just re-opened April 7 after a two-week makeover. While the Golden Rasher award may be mostly fun, Rose&#39;s dish impressed my room of serious judges.</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/baconfest2013templeton.jpg" style="height: 413px; width: 620px;" title="Blinker: Templeton Rye, grapefruit juice, raspberry syrup by Templeton Rye in Templeton, Iowa (WBEZ/Louisa Chu)" /></div><div class="image-insert-image ">Last year&#39;s winner, <a href="http://www.redbutterchicago.com/index.html"><u>Red Butter chef/owner Monica Sharma</u></a> was back, this year with a tandoori bacon arancini and mint raita. Sharma has since held a series of successful pop-up dinners. With this one perfectly executed hot, crunchy, creamy, and complex bite, we had a winner indeed.</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/baconfest2013redbutter.jpg" style="height: 414px; width: 620px;" title="Tandoori bacon arancini and mint raita by Red Butter chef/owner Monica Sharma in Chicago (WBEZ/Louisa Chu)" /></div><div class="image-insert-image "><u><em>Watch<a href="http://www.flickr.com//photos/louisachu/sets/72157633295493438/show/">&nbsp;Slideshow: Baconfest Chicago 2013</a></em></u></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><em>Follow Louisa Chu <a href="https://twitter.com/louisachu"><u>@louisachu</u></a>.</em></div></div></div></div></div></div></div></div><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Mon, 22 Apr 2013 05:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/louisa-chu/2013-04/baconfest-chicago-2013-and-golden-rasher-goes-106763 Eat this, drink that: Filipino cake, Frank Lloyd Wright wintermarket, and more http://www.wbez.org/blogs/louisa-chu/2013-01/eat-drink-filipino-cake-frank-lloyd-wright-wintermarket-and-more-104844 <p><p style="text-align: center;"><a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/ADn4cZg2du_b1vS1V1JPLNMTjNZETYmyPJy0liipFm0?feat=directlink"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/manilamaxdesserts.jpg" style="height: 413px; width: 620px;" title="Dessert sampler with buko pandan, cream cheese brownie à la mode, leche flan, and Ube Creme Decadence at Max's Restaurant in Manila, Philippines (WBEZ/Louisa Chu)" /></a></p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;"><strong>Saturday, January 12</strong></div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;"><a href="http://www.culinaryhistorians.org/">Culinary Historians of Chicago</a> presents <a href="http://www.wbez.org/frosting-filipino-cake-family-carries-their-matriarch%E2%80%99s-dessert-legacy-104709">The Frosting on the Filipino Cake: A family carries on their matriarch&#39;s dessert legacy</a>, at <a href="http://www.kendall.edu/">Kendall College</a>. <a href="http://www.mrsacupcakes-cookies.com/">Mrs. A. Cupcakes</a> chef/owner Delia Anama, who grew up in her native Philippines, will demystify Filipino desserts and delicacies. This event will be recorded for WBEZ&rsquo;s <a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/chicago-amplified"><em>Chicago Amplified</em></a>, but you must attend to taste Mrs. A&#39;s samples of sweet Filipino rice cakes. Admission $5, $3 for students, and FREE for Culinary Historians of Chicago members and Kendall students and faculty.</div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;">The <a href="http://sugarbeetcoop.com/">Sugar Beet Co-op</a> celebrates its first year with a <a href="http://sugarbeetcoop.com/the-latest.php#membership-kick-off-party">Membership Kick-off Party and Winter&rsquo;s Eve Farmers Market</a> at <a href="http://www.unitytemple-utrf.org/index.html">Unity Temple</a>&nbsp;in Oak Park. The Frank Lloyd Wright 1909 modern masterpiece will be transformed with magical candlelight and local vendors with beer, wine, seasonal snacks, and live jazz. Admission $20.</div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;"><strong>Monday, January 14</strong></div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;"><a href="https://twitter.com/barcitochi">Pintxo the Perro</a> and <a href="http://ryanpoli.com/">Tavernita and Barcito chef/partner Ryan Poli</a> kick off <a href="https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=470781236312629&amp;set=a.278752805515474.70616.259674997423255&amp;type=1">Amigos de Pintxo 2.0</a>: A series of all-star guest chef friends making San Sebastián inspired bites &mdash; all-you-can eat and for a cause no less &mdash; <a href="http://www.standandeat.com/">at Barcito</a>. <a href="http://www.peninsula.com/Chicago/en/Enticements/Chef_Lee_Wolen/default.aspx#/Chicago/en/Enticements/Chef_Lee_Wolen/">Lee Wolen of The Peninsula Chicago</a> and <a href="http://elideas.com/chef-bio/">Phillip Foss of EL Ideas</a> will serve their take on Basque <em>pinxtos</em>&nbsp;(tapas), this week benefitting <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blog/louisa-chu/2011-08-26/pilot-light-chefs-get-schooled-lunch-91042">Pilot Light.</a> Admission $25.</div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;"><a href="http://baconfestchicago.com/">Baconfest Chicago</a> presents <a href="http://baconfestchicago.com/three-aces-11413-baconfest-satellite-dinner-update">the final pre-fest satellite dinner</a> at <a href="http://threeaceschicago.com/index.php">Three Aces</a>. Chef Matt Troost won the&nbsp;<a href="http://baconfestchicago.com/it-happened">Golden Rasher award (Most Creative Use of Bacon) at Baconfest 2012</a>,&nbsp;dinner session, for his bacon-bourbon milkshake which will be served. The full menu: First course of lemon-bacon cured scallop crudo with bacon glaze; second course of &quot;shake n&rsquo; bake&quot; bacon steak with bacon bolognese; third course of bacon-parmesan <em>sformato</em>&nbsp;(soufflé) with rutabaga <em>agrodolce</em>&nbsp;(sweet and sour sauce); fourth course of coffee cured pork belly with red flannel hash; fifth and dessert course of bacon-bourbon pecan pie with the award-winning bacon-bourbon milkshake &mdash; all paired with tasting cocktails and beers.&nbsp;Admission $75.</div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;"><strong>Wednesday, January 16</strong></div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: left;"><a href="http://soupandbread.net/">Soup &amp; Bread</a> presents this week&rsquo;s theme, Our Neighbors to the North: From Kenosha to the Arctic Circle, benefitting&nbsp;the&nbsp;<a href="http://irvingparkfoodpantry.com/">Irving Park Community Food Pantry</a>,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.hideoutchicago.com/event/192067-soup-bread-chicago/">at the Hideout</a>.&nbsp;Publican Quality Meats supplies freshly baked bread all season, plus gluten-free loaves from Rae Lynn Hill, aka <a href="https://www.facebook.com/thesweetpurveyor">The Sweet Purveyor</a>. Admission FREE, but please donate what you can and remember <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/louisa-chu/2012-04/season-soup-bread-and-pie-98220">Everyone LOVES the Generous</a>.</div></p> Fri, 11 Jan 2013 05:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/louisa-chu/2013-01/eat-drink-filipino-cake-frank-lloyd-wright-wintermarket-and-more-104844 Baconfest 2011: the recap http://www.wbez.org/blog/steve-dolinsky/2011-04-11/baconfest-2011-recap-84998 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/photo/2011-April/2011-04-11/bacon.jpg" alt="" /><p><p style="text-align: center;"><iframe src="http://player.vimeo.com/video/22176360?title=0&amp;byline=0&amp;color=c40215" width="495" frameborder="0" height="372"></iframe></p><p><em>I sent intern Kristen Kuchar out to cover Saturday's Baconfest at UIC. Here's her report:</em></p><p>The second annual <a href="http://baconfestchicago.com/">Chicago Baconfest</a> lived up to the high expectations of more than&nbsp;1,500 bacon lovers on Saturday. Crowds began to form two hours in advance of the opening; the result was something out of Homer Simpson's dream and a cardiologist's nightmare. Entries ranged from the simple, like the hearty&nbsp;but delicious BLT&nbsp;from 694 Wine &amp; Spirits, to Big Jones' bacon and foie gras moonpie. Somewhere in between were my&nbsp;personal favorites: Heaven on Seven's comforting chicken, bacon creole on parmigiano-reggiano cheese grits, served with jalapeño cheddar bacon cornbread and onesixtyblue's pastrami cured pork belly reuben.</p><div>Almost&nbsp;as many sweet dishes were prepared as well: Atwood Cafe's bacon cannoli and a bacon sundae bar offered by Cafe Des Architectes, which featured bacon soft serve ice cream topped with a choice of bacon chocolate sauce, pineapple bacon sauce or bacon and toasted coconut.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>To wash it down, the booze was plentiful. Piece Brewery paired&nbsp;bacon pizza with their Big Black Mariah beer, an&nbsp;American-style porter&nbsp;that had a touch of smoked malt flavor to compliment the pizza. Bacon drinks included a slightly spicy Bloody Mary made with Bakon Vodka and a tart chocolate bacon drink.&nbsp;Congratulations to Vie's Nathan Sears, who took home the Golden Rasher award for best dish at the event. More on him in our next post, later today...</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>If you didn't make it out this year, take a glance at the short video and mark your calenders for next April.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><em>- Kristen Kuchar</em></div></p> Mon, 11 Apr 2011 11:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blog/steve-dolinsky/2011-04-11/baconfest-2011-recap-84998 Top 5 places for bacon in Chicago; Baconfest returns http://www.wbez.org/blog/steve-dolinsky/2011-04-07/top-5-places-bacon-chicago-baconfest-returns-84747 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/photo/2011-April/2011-04-07/bacon.jpg" alt="" /><p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" height="302" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-April/2011-04-06/bacon.jpg" title="bacon &amp; egg biscuit from Sweet Maple Cafe (photo: Joseph Storch)" width="500"><br> bacon &amp; egg biscuit from Sweet Maple Cafe (photo: Joseph Storch)</p><p>Has it jumped the shark yet? Is bacon as ubiquitous as tiramisu on Taylor Street? Some would argue yes, but many in the food community say bring it on. While the back/side of the hog - the source of bacon - continues to show up on nearly every menu, right alongside beet-and-goat-cheese salads, if you love it salted and dried (or smoked), here's your pocket guide:&nbsp;</p><p>1. <a href="http://thepublicanrestaurant.com/">The Publican</a> (brunch only), 837 W. Fulton Market, 312-733-9555</p><p>2. <a href="http://www.sweetmaplecafe.com/">Sweet Maple Cafe</a>, 1339 W. Taylor Street, 312-243-8908</p><p>3. <a href="http://www.bobak.com/">Bobak's</a>, 5275 S. Archer Avenue, 773-735-5334</p><p>4. <a href="http://www.thebutcherandlarder.com/">Butcher &amp; Larder</a>, 1026 North Milwaukee Avenue, 773-687-8280</p><p>5. <a href="http://www.paddylongs.com/">Paddy Long's</a>, 1028 West Diversey, 773-290-6988</p><p>Honorable mention: <a href="http://www.cityprovisions.com/delicatessen.htm">City Provisions Deli</a></p><p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://thepublicanrestaurant.com/"><img alt="" height="236" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-April/2011-04-04/BaconFestChicago-logo.jpg" title="" width="448"></a></p><p>Bacon fans will probably debate my top 5, and they're also going to descend on the <a href="http://www.uicpavillion.com/">UIC pavilion</a> Saturday, part of Chicago’s <a href="http://baconfestchicago.com/">2<sup>nd</sup>&nbsp;Annual Baconfest</a>,&nbsp;which has been sold out for weeks. Although a festival celebrating the glory of bacon seems obvious, it was actually inspired by a love of beer. After Michael Griggs and Andre Vonbaconvitch attended a musical about the awesomeness of craft beer, they were inspired to think of a way to celebrate bacon. With the avid support of their friend and partner Seth Zurer, the first bacon event took place in October 2009 with a ten-chef cook-off at the <a href="http://thepublicanrestaurant.com/">Publican</a>.&nbsp;That event evolved into <a href="http://baconfestchicago.cpm/">Baconfest</a>, which took place last April at the <a href="http://stanmansion.com/#1">Stan Mansion</a> in Logan Square.</p><p>“People loved the dishes, they loved the cocktails, they loved the feeling that they were part of a bacon community,” Zurer said.</p><p><a href="http://baconfestchicago.com/resources/faq">During</a> the fest, local chefs make their own, innovative dish with the only rule being it must contain bacon. Everything from salads, entrée-style samples, pizzas and pastries are served to guests in small portions. Although the menu for this Saturday’s Fest hasn’t been released, it’s doubtful it'll disappoint the 1,500 bacon fans that already have tickets.</p><p>“It’s amazing how versatile bacon is and how ingenious our chefs are,” Zurer said.</p><p>The number of chefs will double this year, to nearly 60, including <a href="http://www.atwoodcafe.com/">Atwood Café’s</a> Derek Simcik, <a href="http://chizakaya.com/">Chizakaya’s</a> Harold Jurado, <a href="http://www.heavenonseven.com/">Heaven on Seven’s </a>Jimmy Bannos Sr. and <a href="http://www.girlandthegoat.com/">Girl &amp; The Goat’s</a> Stephanie Izard.&nbsp;In addition to unlimited samples of food, guests can also visit the <a href="http://baconfestchicago.com/resources/faq">Bacon Vendor Expo</a> where 30 artisan bacon-makers and bacon entrepreneurs will display, sample and sell their bacon-related products.&nbsp;</p><p>Not only will the Fest feed people cured pork belly, the creators are also helping those who are less fortunate, by making a cash donation of $25,000 to the <a href="http://www.chicagofoodbank.org/">Greater Chicago Food Depository</a>. Any guest that brings a food donation will be entered to win prizes donated by the sponsors and vendors. Even better, the <a href="http://www.ilpork.com/">Illinois Pork Producers Association</a> will donate one pound of pork for every pound of food guests donate. If you didn’t score tickets to the event Saturday, we’ll be there taking notes and share what happened on next Monday’s post.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><div>&nbsp;</div></p> Thu, 07 Apr 2011 11:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blog/steve-dolinsky/2011-04-07/top-5-places-bacon-chicago-baconfest-returns-84747