Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Público Launches Pork-Inspired "Hog Days of Summer" Series

Posted By on Tue, Jul 7, 2015 at 1:00 PM

Chef-owner Mike Randolph expediting in the kitchen. - MABEL SUEN
  • Mabel Suen
  • Chef-owner Mike Randolph expediting in the kitchen.

This Thursday, July 9, chef Mike Randolph will host the first of three pork-themed dinner nights at Público (679 Delmar Avenue, University City; 314-833-5780).

Although you can get pork anywhere, Randolph and chef de cuisine Brad Bardon plan to roast a whole hog and use specific sections for new dishes.

"There's a million ways to butcher a pig," Randolph explains. "We wanted to do something that people don't necessarily see all the time."

Along with their regular menu, Público will offer a la carte pork dishes such as a crown roast (around $26 for two people), grilled flank/skirt steak, trot/hocks with grits, and pig's head with gnocchi and roasted green arbol chiles and cilantro.

Randolph is most excited for the pig's head: "There's a lot of meat on the head, so we'll shred it and make a ragu with it for the gnocchi. It's a really cool, kind of luscious dish. There's a lot of fat but it's rendered down so long, so it will be a nice, spicy, acidic dish."

Público's chalkboard walls will show the availability of the dishes along with which part of the pig they feature. Staff will cross off dishes as they become unavailable.

The idea sprang from Randolph's high school years, when he and his brother would have pork cook-offs for all of their friends.

This Thursday, Randolph will be cooking a Berkshire hog from the local farmer Root + Holler. And if you miss this Thursday's "Hog Days of Summer," there will be two more on August 13 and September 10.

We welcome tips and feedback. Contact the writer via email at emily.mccarter@riverfronttimes.com

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