Perth PorkStar 2013 – The Cabin Small Bar

PorkStar is a travelling showcase of Australian pork, a program that encourages chefs and those in the food industry to get creative and innovative with pork, taking its tasty message from state to state across Australia with special events held in the capital cities.

I’ve drooled over the pictures from previous PorkStar events and was absolutely thrilled to score an invitation for Jac and me to this year’s Perth PorkStar, held last month at The Cabin Small Bar in Mount Hawthorn. It was fun to mingle and catch up with a who’s who of Perth’s top chefs and food service leaders, local heroes of fine dining, bistro and casual fare, all champions for cooking with the pig.

The evening’s menu was prepared by The Cabin’s chef Melissa Palinkas and her team. We were treated to a 15-course feast of porktacular proportions, every dish featuring pork, even the three sweet courses – plenty to intrigue and inspire the chefs in the room.

The highlights of the porkfest for me were the dangerously addictive pork cracklings, the finger-sucking good balsamic glazed pork ribs, and my secret fantasy come true – a bacon milkshake. Yeah, seriously! The serving sizes were well measured and the timing of courses sensibly paced – it was my own greedy fault for pigging out on the crackling. But I regret nothing!

duo_porkstar13PorkStar Marketing Manager Mitch Edwards with The Cabin’s chef Melissa Palinkas.

DSC_2785-2To wash down all the porky goodness: Skimstone wines, James Squire beer, Appleman alcoholic cider made from 100% Australian apples and Cape Grim natural water.

duo_porkstar2The staff happily made Jac and me lemon, lime and bitters, served in tall glasses with special stripey paper straws.

duo_porkstar3Left: I knew it was going to be a porktastic night when we were welcomed with pork cracklings with ancho chilli salt. Right: ‘Bacon and egg on toast’ – smoked jowl, crumbed egg yolk, crispy toast – could’ve eaten a stack of these!

duo_porkstar7Left: Crispy pigs head (in a crumbed ball), steamed bun, achar and red curry mayonnaise. Right: Cold – smoked bacon dashi; warm – ham hock consume, delicately crispy mushroom, all in a surprising shooter glass.

duo_porkstar6Irish ‘craic dog’ – pork sausage in a bun, bacon jam and provolone.

duo_porkstar8Right: Sticky roasted pigs tail, migas and piquillo. Left: Balsamic glazed pork ribs, black pepper.

duo_porkstar9Pork belly, red miso, cuttlefish, coriander, avocado, yuzu, and sweet corn – the cuttlefish was served in strips, like tender pasta.

duo_porkstar10Left: Tenderloin, house bacon, rockmelon, chilli, papaya, tom kah and peanut. Right: The cheese course – cos boat, Cashel Blue foam, crispy house cured ham, pear and agave caviar – best picked up and popped into your mouth all at once for a strong socky hit of blue cheese, crunchy pear and the agave caviar pearls popping under your teeth.

duo_porkstar11Left: Bacon shake with toffee pecan glazed bacon – buttery and rich, a perfect size in a shooter glass. I was much keener on the bacon shake than Jac was! Right: Jamon semi freddo, cherry compote – this reminded me of a Redskin Split ice cream, with an ever so slight hint of jamon, which probably sounds disturbing, but was actually rather good.

duo_porkstar12Chocolate truffle, with bacon, salt and chilli – the final taste of the evening was, for me, the least successful. The taste of chocolate was overwhelmed by saltiness and after a taste of one of these sneaky fireballs, I was reaching for my drink.

DSC_2795Comfy couches, furry cushions, cowhide rugs, stag motifs and lots of wood – cosy cabin style.

DSC_2786How many cones of crackling could you eat?

TFP and Jac attended Perth PorkStar event held at The Cabin Small Bar as invited guests of PorkStar, an initiative of Australian Pork Limited.

The Cabin Small Bar
174 Scarborough Beach Rd, Mt Hawthorn WA 6016
Telephone: 9444 6214
Opening hours

Check out the PorkStar website for more information, including recipes, tips for cooking with pork, and images and video from PorkStar events, including the Perth PorkStar 2013 video.

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  • There is a chance that I’ll be in Australia this year and when it happens and if I’ll have a chance to visit Perth, your blog will be my nr 1 culinary guide.

  • Wen Yang Lee

    Wowz! I have to say, most people that dislike pork is only because of religious reasons.

    I drool over every plate of roast pork =.=!!!

    • Wen, you’d have enjoyed this porkfest. I do have some mates who don’t like the smell of it, so won’t eat it. Fair enough, just means more for me. :)

  • Jessica

    i don’t like pork, i’ve tried and tried and tried, but i just don’t like it. which is a huge shame, because it always looks so yummy. the only pig-products i can eat are bacon and pork crackling. i love pork crackling. and oh my god, that crackle there looks AMAZING. i can taste the crunchy salt in my mouth. YUM.

    • Jessica, bacon and pork crackling only? they’re the best of the pig! Hahaha

  • Kristy @ Queen of Bad Timing

    Sounds like heaven – so much delicious pork! I always tend to binge on crackling and make myself sick haha!

    • Kristy, they placed that tray of cracklings on the table right near us. It took superhuman efforts not to just demolish the lot.