1 Island + 80 Pigs = The Return of Pig Island

What: Pig Island III

When: September 1, 11:30 to 4:30pm

Where: Colonel’s Row, Governor’s Island

How Much: $85 plus fees. Free admission for kids 12 and under, accompanied by a ticketed parent. Free ferry to Governor’s Island.

How about a quick island getaway this Labor Day weekend? Not just any island, but Pig Island: This Saturday it will be teeming with ethically-raised, hormone- and antibiotic-free pigs in every (edible) form imaginable — with the promise that not one bit will be wasted. The event also offers a tent with food to keep vegetarian friends happy, plus plenty of craft beer, wine and cider. If that’s not enough to make you jump, the live bluegrass, blues and the Chef’s Band should get you dancing.

In between butchering demos and dancing, attendees can nosh on the creations of local chefs, many of whom helm Clean Plates-approved restaurants like: Anthony Sasso of Casa Mono, George Weld and Evan Hanczor of Egg and Parish Hall, Jacques Gautier of Palo Santo and Fort Reno, Danny Mena of Hecho en Dumbo and Karma Projects founder Jimmy Carbone of Jimmy’s No. 43.

The day is presented by socially conscious events producers Food Karma Projects, and raises funds for Food Systems Network NYC and City Harvest. The meat will come from ethically raised, hormone- and antibiotic-free pigs, and no scrap will go to waste. Last year’s menu featured pig’s head tacos, linguica with liver mousse and hickory-smoked whole pig. This year’s New York hogs will come from two farms: Raven & Boar Farm in East Chatham, and Autumn’s Harvest Farm in Romulus. The New Jersey farms include: Fossil Farms, Bobolink Dairy and Bakehouse in Milford — farmer Jonathan White will cook his own pig — and Møsefund Farm in Branchville will provide the delectable Hungarian breed of Mangalitsa pigs.

We hear Sixpoint is pouring exclusive custom beers for occasion, and there’s only one way to find out exactly what that means. Yes, your Labor Day planning just got a lot easier.

Image courtesy of Pig Island.


Crush It: The Great Tomato Un-Cookoff & Tomato Fest

What: Food Systems Network Annual Tomato Fest and Great Tomato Un-Cookoff

When: Sunday, August 26, noon to 4:00pm

Where: New Amsterdam Market, South Street between Beekman Street and Peck Slip

How Much: Tickets are $20 for non-FSNYC members, or $30 for non-FSNYC members who purchase a membership. (On-site admission is cash only.)

So you know how to cook, but how’s your un-cooking this summer? Taste some of the city’s best raw (or barely cooked) tomato dishes at Food Systems Network NYC’s annual Tomato Fest and first Great Tomato Un-Cookoff. This Sunday, ten of the city’s best “underground chefs” (and possibly some “above ground” chefs, too) go head to head in a battle of salsa, bruschetta and other un-cooked creations. Continue reading

Making Waves: New York City Gets Fresh

In a city with more shades of margaritas on the map than grey in the subway, is there any room left for wholesome summer fun?

Yes: From Sunday to Sunday, August 19-26, Wholesome Wave presents New York City Gets Fresh, a week-long celebration of regional food and wine hosted by eco-friendly restaurants. How can you get in on the fun? Kick off the week this Sunday, August 19, with the Let’s Move! Brooklyn’s Get Fit Health Walk; cross the Brooklyn Bridge to the food and music festival where food trucks await. Continue reading

Natural Yeast + Veggie Feast = Sour Beer Fest at Jimmy’s No. 43

What: Sour Beer & Vegetarian Nonsense Dinner

Where: Jimmy’s No. 43, 43 East 7th Street

When: August 16, 7-10pm

How Much: $45.57 (includes tax and gratuity)

Beer dinners are often sausage-heavy affairs, the stuff of carnivore winter dreams. But in August what’s a New Yorker craving lighter fare with her refreshing sour beer — let alone a beer-loving vegetarian — to do? Continue reading

Digging and Dining with Mario Batali: The Edible Garden

Want a taste of the country and the city’s best dining? Look no further than the Bronx: The Edible Garden exhibition at the New York Botanical Garden, open from July to October, teaches visitors about the food cycle, from planting and picking to pickling and plating.

Chef Mario Batali, a partner in The Edible Garden, created the Mario Batali Kitchen Gardens where visitors can get their hands dirty, learn about the herbs and vegetables used in his restaurant dishes, enjoy Whole Foods cooking demonstrations and walk away with new recipes to try at home. “Dig! Plant! Grow!” is a hands-on program for kids — don’t be surprised if you want to play too. August’s theme is Pickle Me; visitors learn about pickling plants and can make their own crunchy cucumber pickles for the road. Continue reading

Mario Batali on Botanical Dinners, Michigan Love and Duck Testicles

Cargo shorts and orange Crocs: They’re not just for the kitchen. Ask Mario Batali — the exuberant chef-restaurateur, food television superstar and author also takes his Crocs to the crops.

Batali’s cuisine may be Mediterranean, but his sources are local. A farmers market frequenter and longtime forager, Batali partnered with the New York Botanical Garden to develop Mario Batali’s Kitchen Gardens within The Edible Garden; his portion includes a series of activities and special events centered around his recipes and family cooking.

His reign over Manhattan’s Italian restaurant-scape has been sweeping as well: Clean Platesapproved Babbo, Del Posto, OTTO Enoteca Pizzeria, Lupa Osteria Romano and hybrid marketplace and eatery sensation, Eataly.

Batali gave us the scoop on The Edible Garden, being an Italophile and locavore, duck testicles at the kids’ table and what he’s chewing on, at home and on set. Continue reading

Dine Around Town: A 12-Dinner Benefit

What: A City Farmer, A Chef & A Host dinner benefit

Where: A new friend’s home

When: July 24, 7:00pm to 10:00pm

How Much: $500 (plus fees)

If a chef’s table is simply not intimate enough, consider a benefit dinner party with your favorite chef, perhaps Peter Hoffman of Back Forty and Back Forty West, or Dan Kluger of ABC Kitchen behind the stove, with New York’s most plugged in food, farm and sustainably savvy guests by your side. Continue reading

Urban Zen: Clean Plates at Donna Karan’s Wellness Series

What: Urban Zen Sustainable Wellness Series

Where: 4 Bay Street, Sag Harbor, NY

When: July 21, 11-1 (and every other Saturday through September 1)

How Much: Free

Donna Karan knows a thing or two about essentials. Her Essentials line began in the ‘80s with “Seven Easy Pieces” — bodysuit included, naturally — a woman could mix and match to create her entire wardrobe. Since 2008, the fashion mogul and yogi has focused her attention on life’s essentials: Well-being, culture and an empowered mind, body and spirit. Continue reading