DiNittis & Liken Team Up with ‘Fork to Pork’ Feast

I can’t possibly  keep up with every special restaurant dinner offered in Colorado, but the second annual “Fork to Pork” feast at Vail’s Kelly Liken on Friday, December 7 deserves a shout-out. The special guest is master butcher Mark DeNittis, whose divine Il Mondo Vecchio closed on November 30. Click here for the story.

The telegenic Liken was a “Top Chef” Season 7 “cheftestant” and also appeared on “Iron Chef America,” but her nmemonic Vail Village restaurant remains her culinary anchor. The four-course nose-to-tail pork-centric dinner will be paired with hand-crafted cocktails by Ben Pliska and Nate Michlitsch featuring spirits from Colorado distillery Leopold Bros, and a demonstration by DeNittis speaking to butchery techniques, various cuts of the pig and the versatile use of each cut for preparation. I am not sure whether a butchering demonstration would whet or spoil my appetite, but it’s bound to be fascinating, because DiNittis is so very skilled.

.Liken has long been dedicated to supporting the Colorado agricultural community. A whole Blue Butt hog that was raised by Logan Story of Story Farms, a student of the local 4-H program, has been ordered for the dinner. The 4-H program provides opportunities for students to learn within a hands-on environment while exposing them to new ideas in farming, and the dinner provides an opportunity for diners to learn a lot too.

The four-course menu will include seasonal-inspired dishes. The 2012 menu hasn’t been announced, but the first annual “Fork to Pork” dinner in 2012 included:

  • Crispy Pork Carnitas “Salad”. Arugula, jicama slaw, crunchy chicharrones, roasted chili vinaigrette.
  • Cucumber Lime Elixir. 
  • Smoked Cheeks & Trotters.  
  • Seared diver scallop, sweet corn puree, wilted greens and blackberry gastrique.
  • Tart Blackberry Spritzer
  • Pork Loin Roulade. Italian sausage cornbread stuffing, spaghetti squash, dried fruits.
  •  New York Apple Old Fashioned.
  • Bacon Chocolate Mousse Cake. Hazelnut dacquoise, salted caramel mousse, chocolate bacon crunch and bacon crème anglaise
  •  Chocolate Covered Cherry Cordial.

 The feast costs $99 per person including cocktail pairings, plus excluding tax and gratuity.

Kelly Liken on Urbanspoon

3 thoughts on “DiNittis & Liken Team Up with ‘Fork to Pork’ Feast”

  1. how is this a pork dinner with seared diver scallop course??? wouldn’t cheeks be a better substitute? seeing as they are obviously purchasing pork already broken down for the actual dinner? and trying to show off a whole use of the pig??

  2. what i meant to say is add another part of the pig to the courses rather than a seafood. i see the cheeks obviously but why not use another part entirely? like a head cheese? or some house cured guanciale? jowls. thats it for my rant

    1. Bob – I think you’d have to ask Kelly the reason. IRemember, this was the 2011 meny. I took this information from a press release twas not quite clear about what was plated with what. hat had I might have separated two items that the smoked cheeks and trotters were plated with a single scallop and the rest. I wasn’t there, so I don’t know.

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