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Cochon 555: The Most Pork-tacular Event of 2013 (Pictures)

Five chefs, five pigs, and too many calories to calculate.

Mike Isabella with judge Scott Drewno (left) and Proof chef Haidar Karoum (right). Photographs by Jeff Elkins.

Any city that has hosted it will tell you: Cochon 555 is a debaucherous day of pork-rific proportions. At each stop on its national tour, the event challenges five chefs to make the most of one entire heritage breed pig by creating dishes using all of its parts. Meanwhile, wine, beer, and spirits vendors show up to buzzify the pig-eating crowds.

This year’s event in Washington took place on Sunday, April 7, at the Newseum. The chefs participating were Mike Isabella (Graffiato), Bryan Voltaggio (Volt and Range), Kyle Bailey and Tiffany MacIsaac (Birch & Barley), Jeff Buben (Vidalia and Woodward Table), and Haidar Karoum (Proof and Estadio). It must be said: They really rose to the occasion, putting out impressive dishes such as belly pastrami (Isabella), pâté en croûte (Voltaggio), and an Egg McMuffin-like sandwich with a pork-fat muffin and hickory-smoked pork loin (Karoum). Crowds washed down the rich dishes with jarred Manhattans featuring whiskeys from Hudson, Far West, Four Roses, and other distillers, as well as wine, mezcals from Illegal, and digestion-aiding shots from industry darling Fernet Branca.

In the end, Mike Isabella and team were judged the winners of the evening. To relive all the piggy goodness, cruise through our tasty slideshow.

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