More than a dozen Colorado chefs, including Elise Wiggins (Panzano), Michael Long (Aria), Austin Cueto (Restaurant Kevin Taylor), Frankie Semsem (Strings) and Paul Nagan (Zink Kitchen & Bar), are trotting off to the Renaissance Denver Hotel this afternoon to prep for tonight's piggy extravaganza, part of the Colorado Pork Producers Council's Taste of Elegance fundraiser to benefit the Colorado FFA Foundation, a nonprofit that seeks founds to support agricultural education in the state. "It's a win, win, win situation for everyone involved," says event manager Ed Bass. "We have excellent chefs preparing great pork dishes, the proceeds benefit a terrific charity and the public can come and sample the dishes and walk away saying that they never knew pork could taste so good."
The hog hoedown, which is judged by a swine-worthy panel of industry types and chefs, including Tyler Wiard, the exec chef of Elway's Cherry Creek, who won the National Taste of Elegance battle in 2008, also pimps a people's choice ballot. For her part, Wiggins is ready. "I've come in second, so I'm itching to win this one," she says.
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Tickets are $60 per couple, or $40 per person, and includes samples of all the dishes, plus sips from Colorado wines. The event gets underway at 6:30 p.m. at 3801 Quebec Street. Tickets are available at the door. For more info, go to www.coloradoffafoundation.org/Taste_of_Elegance.html.