Saturday’s Bespoke food summit unites foodies who want to go back to school, too

All this back-to-school excitement can be fun for adults, too.

On Saturday, the folks who run Cochon 555, a nose-to-tail pig competition taking place the following day, are hosting “Bespoke: An Exploration of Taste & Thought,” a food summit exploring the theme of food and movement.

Cochon 555 returns to Austin this weekend, but this year, the event is adding a food summit the day before to encourage education and dialogue around how food moves and why it matters. Contributed by Cochon 555

Cochon 555 will take place at 4 p.m. Sunday at the Four Seasons, but the day before at Contigo, 2027 Anchor Lane, you can hear presentations from some of Austin’s leading food thought leaders, including keynote speaker Rachel Laudan.

Laudan, the food historian and author of “Cuisine and Empire: Cooking in World History,” has lived and worked on five continents and now resides in Austin, and she’ll be talking about how food movement has affected the development of not only cuisine, but also politics, war and society.

Author and food historian Rachel Laudan, who lives in Austin, will give the keynote at this year’s Bespoke.

The second keynote will come from Robert McKeown, a former Gourmet magazine Asia correspondent and Oxford Food symposiast, who will talk about what he called “culinary worlding” and Filipino food.

Following McKeown’s presentation, Fiore Tedesco of L’Oca D’Oro, Sam Hellman-Mass of the upcoming restaurant Suerte and Farmhouse Delivery owner Stephanie Scherzer will sit on a panel about to talk about issues of diversity, labor and power in the food industry. Attendees will get a chance to then rotate through small roundtable discussions with each of the guests, which is meant to foster engagement and discourse beyond ordinary Q&A format.

All of the profits from Bespoke go will go to two charities: Piggy Bank, which supports family farms raising heritage breed animals, and the American Friends of the Oxford Food Symposium, a student scholarships fund.

The summit will take place from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tickets to Bespoke cost $55 for students with an ID or $75 for general admission, and they include a ramen lunch bar from Peached Tortillas. You can find them here.

Cochon 555 is a nationally touring event that started in 2008 to educate consumers about heritage pigs, the agricultural importance of utilizing Old World livestock and how they can support family farmers raising these specialty breeds.


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