Pork Wars is an annual food battle and fundraiser for the St. John’s Farmer’s Market. Each year three famous local food folks are given a clear, tough challenge: make something with pulled pork that tastes better than what your two competitors serve up. The jury is the entire, ravenous crowd: everyone votes.
This year will be a battle of pulled pork sandwiches, and the three chefs throwing down are Steve Curtis (formerly from the Casbah, Steve is now the force behind Sauces by Steve Curtis, a Farmer’s Market favourite), Nick Van Mele, Head Chef at the Grounds Cafe (arguably the best new restaurant of 2017), and Darren Hayward of Newfoundland Seasonings fame.[Spoiler!]: Hayward says he’s contemplating serving a “Carolina style pulled pork sandwich (10-hour hickory smoke), with a golden beet and apple slaw, and Quidi Vidi Winter Ale bbq sauce, as well as homemade fried potato chippers with a variety of sauces, veg, and herb toppings.” He’s still working on the bun, so we’ll keep you in suspense there.
As for Curtis, “I might change or add something, but here’s the idea I’m working with: Braised pulled pork with Sichuan chilli sauce, roasted garlic, espresso lime mayonnaise, pickled carrot, pickled jalapeño, pickled orange zest. Also, a few sprigs of cilantro and green onion.”
We’ll leave you in the dark on what Mele has up his sleeve, to entice you to go and find out for yourself. It was Stephen Quinton from Q’s Barbeque Catering who took home the trophy last year. He served Asian pulled pork, with sesame fried cabbage and bakeapple-and-curry yogurt, served on top of a choux pastry. His side was pork-infused Mac and cheese and potato chips. Maybe year 4 could be a throwdown between the first three local chefs who won PROK WARS! in 2015, 2016, and 2017? Hmm, or Mmm rather.
The event takes place at, and is sponsored by Quidi Vidi Brewery. Once everyone in attendance votes, the winner will be announced on the spot. There’ll be games of chance, 50/50 draws, and a live auction for two nights in Trinity.
Be there, November 16th: doors at 6, event at 7. The cost of the ticket includes all three sandwiches, sides, and a dessert. It’s $55 dollars, or $65 if you want two pints ($5 pints!). All proceeds go towards furnishing the new Farmers’ Market space, set to open in the summer of 2018.