Dining and food culture in Chicago

411: Pork Bellies

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“Bacon is truly the Helen of Troy of meats,” says Baconfest co-founder (and acclaimed theatrical sound designer) Andre Pluess. And if all goes according to plan, bacon is going to be the meat that launches (nearly) a thousand plates Saturday April 10 at the Stan Mansion in Logan Square. “We almost instantly found ourselves in meetings with some of the best chefs in Chicago eager to participate and to help us realize the dream,” says Pluess, describing the reaction to their idea. What now sounds like a modest plan—a hundred guests being served bacon specialties by ten chefs at the Publican last fall—has blossomed into twenty-four chefs from some of Chicago’s top restaurants serving 800 attendees this Saturday. If you slept on buying tickets, however, no bacon for you. “Our event sold out in less than fifteen minutes,” says Pluess. Aside from the bacon menu created by the pros, the fest includes an amateur bacon cook-off and  more than twenty vendors selling anything from bacon themed t-shirts to lip balm. “There will also be readings of bacon poems,” says Pluess. “And we will present the winning bacon music video entry from the Baconfest Youtube contest.” What started as a late-night conversation over drinks, “writing a musical called BACON!” Pluess remembers, “has quickly snowballed into reality.” (Peter Cavanaugh)

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