Red Table Meat Co. is now in full production and distribution mode with the release of an impressive array of custom cured meats. Helmed by Mike Phillips, former chef at Craftsman, the Modern Cafe, and Chet's Taverna, with partner Kieran Folliard of 2 Gingers fame, Red Table Meat Co. is passionately committed to local, sustainably raised hogs from small farmers that care deeply about animal welfare. That commitment is not a marketing ploy, and the results are cured meats with extraordinary flavor.
The Hot Dish was recently on hand for a tasting of Red Table Meat Co.'s prolific offerings. The spread held a dizzying array of salumi like the François (white wine, white pepper, and garlic), Vecchio (white wine, garlic, black pepper), Extra Vecchio (because who can have enough Vecchio?), Salbando (hot salami), Salbando Grande (big hot salami -- no comment), Chet's (spicy fennel and garlic), Big Chet's (bigger is better), and Pork Queen (funky black pepper and garlic, and also Mike Phillips hints he may have dated a real Pork Queen once).
Also on hand were whole muscle cured meats like Coppa (dry-cured pork shoulder), Filetto (dry-cured pork tenderloin), Lonza (dry-cured pork loin), Prosciutto (dry-cured ham), Lardo (cured back fat), and the Royal (cooked smoked ham). Finally, there was an array of cured meats for cooking, which include Guaciale (cured pork cheek), Panchetta (cured pork belly), and Maple Breakfast Sausage.
The road to this launch was especially long and winding. After a painstaking USDA approval process, which included extensive testing through the University of Minnesota, Red Table Meat Co. is finally approved for wide-scale retail and wholesale purchase. Peter Ireland, chef of now shuttered The Lynn on Bryant, has joined the staff in sales. According to Peter, it's quite a bit more than sales. You might find him stuffing sausage with production manager Tyler Montgomery on any given day. "It's all hands on deck with this small operation."
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