Paul Glowaski of Dinner Bell Farm and Trou Normand’s Executive Chef Salvatore Cracco go a long way back, so it was a no-brainer to have them collaborate on the upcoming Grazing at the Kitchen Table fundraiser. That relationship started when Salvatore was working at Bar Agricole, and Paul was making deliveries there. “Once I tasted their meat, I was hooked,” recalls Salvatore, or Sal, as Paul fondly calls him. “Sal was very excited about our products,” continues Paul. “He really liked the chickens that we raised before we started raising pigs.”
Tell us about the history of your partnership.
Paul: I cold called at Bar Agricole. I walked in with a box of okra and shishito peppers. Shishito peppers are popular now, but five years ago they weren't. After the restaurant started using our products, we worked with Thad Vogler, the owner of Trou Normand and Bar Agricole, to invest in a breeding herd of Mangalitsa pigs for Trou Normand’s planned charcuterie program. We brought the first of the pigs from that breeding herd to Trou Normand two years ago.
Salvatore: In Mangalitsa pigs, the fat melts at a much lower temperature. It is an old world product perfect for charcuterie. We used that first Mangalitsa to make prosciutto that has aged for two years and which we are starting to serve now. Prosciutto is a tribute to the pig. It is truly amazing.
What do you respect most about each other’s work?
Paul: Sal has taken charcuterie to the next level. He has trained for years in the US and worked at farms in Italy. To do that quality with integrity is expensive. Sal comes out to the farm, and he sees the care that happens. He has worked with us at the farm; we’ve raised a pig and flowers for his wedding.
Salvatore: Other chefs may hem and haw about the price because they have not seen what it takes to raise quality livestock. I don't argue about the price because I know the hard work it takes.
Paul: We want our products to be used by a chef who cares about what we do. For us, it is more than a business because we are a family farm.
Paul, how does it feel to eat what you raised prepared by Salvatore?
Paul: Sal served me at Bar Agricole, and they treated us like rock stars. It made me so proud.
Salvatore: I made the reservation for Dinner Bell, and I made it clear that Dinner Bell is my favorite farm. We do treat them like rock stars. It is special for the servers to serve them what they grew.
Grazing at the Kitchen Table takes place from 6.30pm to 9.30pm on Thursday, October 1st, 2015 at Dogpatch WineWorks, San Francisco. Tickets start at $200 and can be purchased here. Click here for more info and follow #GrazeAndGive2015 for updates!