I'm sure that somewhere in the five boroughs of New York City, somebody roasts a pig better than Il Buco chef Ignacio Mattos's succulent swine, but I don't know how you'd find out about it.
So sometime tomorrow between 1 p.m. and 6 p.m., I am going to head down to Il Buco's fourth-annual "Sagra del Maiale," an outdoor pig festival on Bond Street (b/n Lafayette and Bowery) commemorating the Autumn Equinox. Mattos will roast a 160-pound Ossabaw pig "infernillo" (little hell) style, which means the pig is roasted between two large iron griddles sandwiched between a wood fire above and below. I went last year (see photos above), and Mr. Mattos and company sure know their way around a pig.
Here's what the Il Buco folks are going to serve:
- Whole slow-roasted pig
- Flying Pigs Farm porchetta panini on ciabatta with mostarda
- House-made Stone Church Farms pig, apple, and peperoncino Sausage
- Farmers' market panzanella
- Julie's wild arugula with lemon, red onion and pecorino
- Apple ricotta fritters with saba
- House-made lemonade and iced tea
The cost: $20 a plate, including the lemonade and iced tea. Last year, the event's organizational structure left a little bit to be desired, resulting in long, slow lines, so I'm hopeful the Il Buco folks have learned from their mistakes.