August 26, 2010 meat-o-mania

the invitation reads:

wednesday, august twenty fifth

we are so pleased to extend an invitation to a first-time farm255 happening…a culmination of blood, sweat, mud, hides, hair, and muscle. a paradise of sorts for the admirer of our farm toil, kitchen fire and fat. we’re bringing our good friend brent j. young { chef, butcher & steeler } down from his shop up in brooklyn, new york { the meat hook }  to seek together with our chef, matthew palmerlee, and our sous chef, jake o. francis,  the off & over & insides of our various animals and make them into a six-course tasting supper during the hot, dead middle of august.

through the door, and on the bar, we are greeted with a simple bouquet in a mason jar, an icy trough of beers, and a whole cow’s head, simply roasted.  scattered amongst the bar, the tables, and hanging in the kitchen, lay a handful of copies of tonight’s menu—sharpie on butcher paper.  the prix fixe, five course feast of a menu is presented through the eyes of the butcher—the animal’s name, and the cut of meat— no other description.  with items such as lamb:testicle, pig:brain, and chicken:heart scribbled around the room, we took seats at communal farm tables and waited for the three hour onslaught of beast to attack. 

it came, and it came, and it came.  a roller coaster journey across the butcher’s cut sheet—foot, head, face, tongue, liver, heart, skin, belly, testicle, brain, oh my.  the inspired menu was narrated in-between courses with explanations of flavors, stories of late night chicken wing benders, and various other antics by the chefs.  by the end of the night the crowd waddled home, jeans unbuttoned, with a new car shine glistening from within their bodies.  enough grassfed, pasture raised, pure animal fat was involved in the night to fuel our farm for a month.  the finale, for dessert, these sick fucks served figs with toast, and whipped lardo.   and that, ladies and gents, is when a room full of grown ass people willingly spread pure pig fat onto toast and called it dessert. 

here are some other highlights:



sausage party

brent holds fire

chef’s eye view, cow’s heart on knife

a round of honey mead for everyone

lamb and cow testicles

homemade sausage, pretzels, and kraut.  mustard two ways.

dessert:  figs with thyme and honey.  whipped pig’s fat on toast.

three chefs serving shots for the road.  rye whiskey with a drunk crisp of big pink (a storied sow in our herd’s history, and truffle’s mom)

a kiss good night


a fantastic evening, and a fantastic performance by the farm255 crew.  general delight aside, the night was personally meaningful in my journey from brooklyn to farmer.  brent, the guest butcher and chef who was brought down here for this event, was my butcher for the last couple years living up in new york.  when i was looking to find a farm, i asked the guy’s at the meat hook, amongst many others, and brent’s recommendation to check out the farm in athens is what brought me here today.  so, that worked out.

furthermore, my company at the dinner table—a collection of local farmers, their loved ones, and some good friends from farm burger—truly made the evening a rewarding experience. 

more selfishly, a thirty minute pig montage i put together played over a movie screen for about half of the evening, my efforts as farm apprentice were cheered by the guests enjoying their feast, and a take home door prize of pickled chicken feet was the cherry on top.

this morning, when i awoke from the protein induced coma, i decided to go on a three day raw vegetable binge to clear out the ol’ blood stream and give my liver a break.  no bread, no cheese, no meat—just veggies.

a couple hours later, however, jake called me and told me he just picked up truffles from the slaughter house and asked me if i wanted any.  long story short, i’ve been boiling truff’s backbones all day, along with a chicken we slaughtered last week and some vegetables, in order to prepare a dank stock for the truff ribs i’m going to make tomorrow.  after that, i took some herbs from my patio, some garlic from our farm, some honey my friend’s bees made, and some kosher salt, rubbed it all over truff’s belly, and started the process of making bacon. 

looks like the cleanse will just have to wait a few days.