Ideation: Pig on a plate

How pork is being served today.

Sugarcane Skewered Pork Loin

Several of the new appetizers at Wish in Miami Beach, Florida, are adaptations of dishes executive chef Michael Bloise discovered during a recent trip to Vietnam. Inspired by the country's roadside hibachi stands, he created Sugarcane Skewered Pork Loin. Brined medallions of pork are threaded and grilled on sugarcane stalks then served on a salad of baby greens, Thai basil, bamboo shoots and rice noodles dressed with a soy vinaigrette. "The flavors and textures of this appetizer are in perfect balance," Bloise says.

Haute Hash and BLTs

Located in Perry, Iowa—the heart of pig-farming country—the Hotel Pattee's menu features plenty of pork. Executive chef Shad Kirton feels it meshes well with his "comfort food with an edge" theme, reflected in such specialties as Grilled Pork Chops with Triple Pork Hash. "I like to incorporate several types of pork into one dish, contrasting the flavors of smoked and unsmoked meat, for example, or the textures of crisp bacon with soft braised shoulder," Kirton says.

Baby Backs Front and Center

Meaty St. Louis-style ribs have long been a bestseller at the Columbus, Ohio-based Damon's Grill. But as part of a menu extension this year, Brett Freifeld, director of food & beverage excellence, has added baby backs to the menu. They go through a 21-step cooking process, including marinating, steaming, saucing and grilling to guarantee tenderness and succulence. Damon's sweet-tangy barbecue sauce—"a flavor that keeps our customers coming back," Freifeld says, adds the signature touch.


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