Wednesday, October 3, 2012
Post 390: Pigs, Bourbon & Beer
Each month, Chef Eric Brennan of Post 390 hosts a special Farm to Post dinner. This is a three-course Prix Fixe menu, offered all month, which showcases local ingredients from one specific farm, fishery or similar producer. I was invited as a media guest to a special event to check out their latest menu, a "Pig Out" showcasing the products of Brambly Farms. I did not see a menu beforehand so it was all going to be a surprise for me.
The new Brambly Farms "Farm to Post" Menu offers 3 courses for $48, or $65 with wine pairings. You get a choice for each course from 2 different selections for Appetizer, Entree and Dessert. The special event I attended was different from the usual Farm to Post menu, though some of the same dishes and items are on both menus.
Brambly Farms, located in Norfolk, and the owners, Ted and Sandra O'Harte, were present at the dinner. They operate a pasture raised farm and raise 5 heritage breeds of pig, including Berkshire, Large Blacks, Tamworth, Red Wattle, and Gloucestershire Old Spots (like Dalmatians with lots of spots). They have maybe 100-150 pigs on their farm, and they also raise chickens and have had other animals as well at times, though some were killed by fisher cats.
Prior to the dinner, we watched a brief video about the farm, plenty of photos of the operation and animals. It is worthwhile to understand where your food comes from and knowing the pork was from a local farm is another benefit. The O'Hartes, who seemed very personable and down to earth, also answered our questions during the course of the dinner. Our meal featured the meat from Berkshire and Large Blacks pigs, as well as eggs from their chickens.
After that cocktail, the rest of the courses were paired with various beers, mostly local, and though I tasted all of the beers, none of them really appealed to me. The beers included: Pretty Things Jack D'Or, High & Might Purity of Essence, Jack's Abby Smoke & Dagger, Berkshire Brewing Co. Octoberfest and North Coast Old Rasputin. The beer lovers at the table all seemed to enjoy the pairings and I do give them credit for using mostly local brews.
Service was excellent, and the food was impressive. It is great see to Post 390 showcasing local farmers, and exposing their customers to the local bounty. The Peach n 'Pig was a delightful choice to accompany each dish. Check out the Brambly Farms menu this month, and Post 390's future Farm to Post dinners as well. I am going to have to return now to check out their regular menu, and also see what other interesting cocktails they have concocted.
Who doesn't love pork?