Monday, April 11, 2011


This blog will mainly be a pictorial of the event that was... dun dun DUN...BACONFEST!

We went in at 12:30, with empty stomachs and full of high hopes and expectations. We were not disappointed. We emerged 2 hours later, with bellies full of bacon and a camera full of memories. We were also in desperate need of massive amounts of water and a nap. Needless to say, not much else got accomplished that day. So, ladies and gentlemen, I present to you Baconus Maximus, a Festival of all things porky and bacony:

The massive line when we arrived. These were ticket-holders only- Once inside, one of the chefs told me they expected 900 participants

My favorite T-shirt in line. It tickled me. Although, even if  the vegans were successful in their quest, I doubt I would go over to the other side...
The Menu. Alllll of these things were there. We thought about devising a strategy, but we just started at one end and worked our way around
The other half...


Inside- one lane of tables and eaters.

Our first yummy

Not a very good picture- they get better
We didn't get a pic of some things- for example, the amazing bacon, grit, and cheddar waffle....mmmm

But we did get a lot- this is from Terzo Piano: sweet empanada with cinnamon bacon and a strawberry and almond salsa verde. It was a fantastic combination of salty and sweet and hot and cold w the hot out of the fryer empanada and cool, crunchy salsa. A good way to start.

Another good start was this really interesting rum from Zacapa that had been infused with bitters, cacao, and, oh yes- bacon. Surprisingly tasty.

Stanley's Kitchen and Tap decided to be brave and make quail eggs a la minute- for 900 people. As we entered, it appeared they were questioning their decision.
Or had never seen an episode of Top Chef.

Some of the eggs appeared overcooked, but mine was actually quite tasty. It was served with grits, pork belly, and a bacon broth. All in all, it was a lovely offering.

 Blue 13 had this lovely refreshing treat- Honeydew melon salad with a bacon vinaigrette, frozen honeydew ball, and honeydew gelee. Not particularly bacon-y, but a very welcome palate cleanser and a pleasant Springtime treat.

Ok, this was just cool: Bacon-stuffed bacon, maple egg jam, and whipped pancakes.

I still have mixed feelings about the 'pancakes'- in that they were not pancake-y enough for me. I was really hoping it would taste like I was eating pancakes in pure whipped form...but I was disappointed.  Maybe I didn't get enough maple egg jam on my portion. But big points for creativity and the bacon-stuffed bacon was delicious.

This one was so-so. From Small Bar, these were a braised bacon brioche with salted maple butter and crispy egg yolk. The egg yolk was powdery and really didn't bring any flavor to the dish and I did not get any maple flavor. Overall the dish was sadly disappointing...

I am not a fan of sauerkrat, but the bf could not say enough good things about the pastrami cured pork  belly reuben from one sixtyblue. He was smitten.


Bacon. Wrapped. Cheese-stuffed. Hot dogs.

Are you kidding me?? Toss on some salsa fresca and a lime aoili and that was one tasty dog. Old Town Social came to Baconfest prepared to make people drool.

From Lillie's Q- pork belly and grit hash, smoked gulf shrimp, and a bacon vinegar sauced. The hash was a-ma-zing, and the shrimp was well-cooked- which I imagine has to be difficult in this type of setting.


Ok, this one was a great idea that, when it came to execution, only made it halfway there...

Longman & Eagle made a bacon rillette lollipop with maple bacon cotton candy. They served it with a shot of whiskey. I took the whiskey with a bite of the cotton candy and it was outstanding. I then attempted the meatpop. It was just as unappetizing as it sounds. It had the texture of a raw sausage patty- mushy and salty and cold. I would totally nosh on a full-sized cone of bacon cotton candy. But if you come near me with another meatpop... well, I won't be held responsible for my actions.

This was a chocolate martini rimmed with candied bacon suspended in chocolate. The bacon rim was awesome. The drink inside- not so much. After munching on the rim of the glass for a bit, I let this one go...

Be free, martini... be freeeeeeeeee.

The Bacon Ice Cream Bar
This section deserves its own heading- most pics below will not be labeled, as they are self-explanatory. This was put on by Cafe Des Architectes- called Ziggy Piggy: The Bacon Sundae Bar. That's right. A Bacon Sundae bar. The ice cream itself was a smoky ice cream and the toppings were all amazing. I particularly enjoyed the bacon gummy bears and the white chocolate coated lardons....

bacon chocolate sauce
Bacon chocolate
Other bacon sauces including pineapple bacon and a bacon-scotch

Just Bacon

My final product


This was one of our favorite dishes: from Chizakaya Japanese Pub, Grilled bacon nigiri with house made kimchi, sushi rice, and smoky bacon ikura. Everyone around us was raving. It was so creative and so incredibly tasty- I can say nothing but warm, fuzzy, happy things about this dish.

Black Dog Gelato brought out a banana and bacon foster- tasty, but rather unimaginative and forgettable in comparison to all of the other tastings...

The bf was a big fan of these, but they weren't my fave- from Veerasway, a chocolate covered crispy cardamom pork with cashews and rain chutney. I am a big fan of salty/sweet, but the spice combination just didn't do it for me- it killed all of the other flavors. As I said, the bf disagreed, so it was clearly not a total failure :)

From the Bedford- bacon meatballs, English pea mash, pickled mushrooms, blue cheese, and bacon fat bearnaise. I am not a blue cheese fan- I know, it's crazy. I will eat pretty much any kind of cheese and be thrilled about it, just not the blue. I loved all of the other elements, though- the mash and bernaise were excellent.

Everyone was raving about the slab bacon at Naha as we were wandering about so we headed on over- They slow roasted giant chunks of bacon with rhubarb and sorghum. Yum and yum.

The people were not wrong. It was sweet and tender and juicy- all in all, a very tasty piece of meat. If I was not already turning into bacon-stuffed bacon, I probably would have had more.

This was the Elvis sandwich presented by the Gemini Bistro- peanut butter, fried, banana, and bacon, all served on griddled banana bread. Sadly, by the time we got there an hour and a half into the extravaganza, the banana bread was hard and dry. Not even the extra maple syrup could soften it enough to make it edible...

I actually did not try the burger here, but the bourbon bacon ice cream float made me verrrrry happy. From Park Grill, it was a maple bourbon ice cream with candied bacon jimmies. Totally something I will be making at home...

This was something interesting and unexpected amidst all of the rich dishes at Baconfest. From the Red Canary, it was bacon cured Steelhead trout on top of bacon and a bacon and mushroom salad. It was refreshing- I really liked the cold trout and bacon and mushroom salad. The flavors went together really well and were a nice contrast to all of the other super-rich dishes I had already stuffed into my mouth.

Photo Op!!!!!
This is me with Stephanie Izard, Season 4 Top Chef winner and fan favorite! The bf doesn't watch Top Chef and could not understand why I suddenly had to have my picture taken with some stranger. But once I explained, he understood and smiled and nodded as I raved about how exciting that was and how tiny she is in real life....
Seriously, she's adorable.

Random shot of slabs of bacon.
Sooooo much bacon...

THIS. This was my favorite thing at the entire fest. My stomach was already on overload by the time we reached it and I ate the whole thing and half of the bf's. This was from Nana Organic- it was a candy bar made with a house smoked bacon cake, Koval whiskey, maple syrup, caramel, and chocolate.    It was the perfect combination of salty and sweet, soft and crunchy, gooey and...well, whatever pairs with gooey. It was awesomeness topped with deliciousness topped with scrumptiousness. And then smothered in tastiness.

It was the perfect way to end a bacon-filled day. And remember the line of people standing and waiting to get in? This is what they looked like afterwards: 

They had the right idea. As it was, getting in the car and driving home was too much work after leaving Baconfest. We made it to the car, but then we put the top down and sat there. For a good 20-30 minutes. We considered staying in the city and having dinner, but who were we kidding? We didn't eat again until almost 4:00 the next day. But man, we drank a LOT of water....


  1. Holy crap, you saw Stephanie Izard! Ha, Phillip would react the same way as Matt, he would just smile and nod :) Everything looked so good, you'll have to let me know ahead of time when something else like that occurs...maybe we'll be able to join!

  2. Perhaps next year I will be joining... It looks amazing!!! I can't imagine how much your mouth must hurt after, I'm sure the water was absolutely necessary!

  3. Oh wow! Everything looks amazing,the bacon ice cream looks delicious.

  4. It was definitely an experience- I'll have to post a notice next year when the tix go on sale...
    The bacon ice cream *was* fantastic- the bacon peach "gummy bears" on the sundae bar were also surprisingly good...