VAIL, Colo. — The Taste of Vail, one of the nation’s top food and wine festivals, today announces its partnership with Niman Ranch. Niman Ranch is a community of more than 750 independent family farmers and ranchers who raise pork, beef and lamb traditionally, humanely and sustainably to deliver premium meats to some of the country’s most celebrated chefs and discerning home cooks.
The Aprés Tasting in the streets of Vail on Thursday, April 7th will highlight the debut of the Niman Ranch Pork Challenge where an elite group of Vail chefs will go head-to-head in a culinary challenge featuring Niman Ranch’s distinctive pork. Winners will be selected by a judging panel of industry leaders including; Paul Anders, executive chef of Sweet Basil and Mountain Standard, Pete Marczyk, owner of Marczyk’s Fine Foods, members of the food media and others. Additionally, The Taste of Vail will welcome a Niman Ranch hog farmer as a special guest judge who will confirm which chef has the ultimate chops in honoring the hard work they put into raising their pigs humanely and sustainably. This year awards will go to ‘Best Pork Belly’, ‘Best Pork Shoulder’, ‘Best in Show’ and Taste of Vail guests will also have an opportunity to vote for their favorite dish in the ‘People’s Choice’ award. Attendees can enjoy these delicious bites with wine from more than 50 wineries showcasing their best selection at the event.
“As the Taste of Vail celebrates its 30th year this spring season, we have been looking to grow and evolve our event to spark a renewed interest in the Vail food and wine community while maintaining the iconic traditions of The Taste of Vail,” said Angela Mueller, executive director of Taste of Vail. “We are thrilled to welcome a brand like Niman Ranch to the Taste of Vail to offer attendees an elevated culinary experience featuring the finest tasting pork sourced from sustainable farms.”
“Being a Colorado-based brand, we are thrilled to celebrate our home community and the culinary sector by partnering for the first time with the Taste of Vail,” shared Chris Oliviero, Niman Ranch General Manager. “We are confident our premium pork, raised with care by independent family farmers, will be a hit with chefs and event guests alike.”
Taste of Vail guests will also be able to experience and learn more about Niman Ranch throughout the festival including:
Whole Hog Butchery Seminar
Niman Ranch will be leading a whole hog butchery seminar at The Taste of Vail where guests can learn about the key factors that produce the brand’s exceptional meat quality: humane animal care, breeds and genetics, and sustainable farming practices. These factors directly translate to the unparalleled Niman Ranch pork flavor and highlight why it is served in Michelin and James Beard Award winning restaurants across the country. Find more information and get tickets at www.tasteofvail.com. The seminar is also available free of charge to Vail Valley chefs. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Virtual Reality Farm Experience
Taste of Vail attendees will be able to experience Niman Ranch through the company’s newly launched virtual reality experience. Using the immersive Oculus headset, viewers are transported directly to a Niman Ranch farm where they are able to meet the people raising the animals sustainably and with care. See piglets frolicking in the field and cattle munching on grass all from the streets of Vail. Visit the Niman Ranch booth for more information.
About Taste of Vail
The Taste of Vail returns April 6-9 for its 30th season and features more than 22 guest chefs, restaurateurs, and sommeliers as well as more than 55 top wineries from around the world. Over the four-day festival attendees experience signature events designed to showcase iconic Vail locales including the 2021 Debut of Rosé, The Niman Ranch Pork Challenge & Après Ski Tasting, The MountainTop Tasting, and the Grand Tasting as well as seminars, intimate wine pop ups, dinners and more.
Rated among the top food and wine festivals by Forbes, Travel Channel, and USA Today, Taste of Vail will celebrate Vail’s world class dining scene and participating wineries finest wines, at several different venues throughout North America’s most popular mountain resort. Taste of Vail is one of the nation’s only events that invites dozens of winemakers and owners from all over the world to pour wine and interact with participants. For more information and to purchase tickets visit www.tasteofvail.com and follow the Taste of Vail on Facebook and Instagram.
About Niman Ranch
Niman Ranch is a community of more than 750 independent family farmers and ranchers who raise pork, beef and lamb traditionally, humanely and sustainably to deliver the Finest-Tasting Meat in the World®. Niman Ranch is the largest farmer and rancher network in North America to be Certified Humane®. They are the protein of choice for America’s most celebrated chefs, as well as, the premier option for discerning home cooks looking for meats Raised with Care.® No antibiotics or added hormones—ever. Follow Niman Ranch on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
–Taste of Vail