This Weekend: Bacon Bash at the Royal Oak Farmers Market

By: Amber Ogden | April 13, 2015

If you attended Mac N’ Brews at the Royal Oak Farmers Market two months ago, you know that the Social Connection knows how to expertly put together an event for Metro Detroit foodies.

While Mac N’ Brews was a grand event, get ready for something that just may top it: Bacon Bash. The event takes place this Friday, April 17 at the Royal Oak Farmers Market, 316 E. 11 Mile Rd., and proves that bacon is more than just a breakfast food.

Local company Dearborn Brand is donating over 2,000 pounds of bacon for the event, in five different varieties: original, double smoked, applewood smoked, smoked pepper and honey cured. About 40 different local restaurants will then whip up unique and bacon-ified creations using it.

“This event is for anyone who loves food and likes to try new things,” Regina Stocco, president of the Social Connection, said. Well, it’s the perfect event for anyone who isn’t a vegetarian. Sorry, veggie lovers!

Dearborn Brand

(Photo provided by Regina Stocco of the Social Connection)

Participating venues include Lakes, which will be preparing Potato Blinis with Cured Salmon, Bacon Salt and Chive Crème Fraîche. Other highlights include Cajun sausage wrapped bacon balls and bacon fried rice from LazyBones SmokeHouse, Mole Braised Bacon Belly from the International Culinary School at the Art Institute, Smoked Bacon and Deviled Eggs topped with Bacon from Lockhart’s BBQ and Apple Caramel Bacon Waffles with Chicken from New Center Eatery. There will even be bacon cinnamon rolls and homemade marshmallows (with peanut butter and bacon!) available for sampling.

“There are some pretty innovative concoctions and some of the vendors are getting pretty extreme with their food concepts,” Stocco said of the Bacon Bash offerings.

Unlike February’s Mac N’ Brews event, Stocco said this event will feature lighter dishes so attendees won’t fill up as fast as they may have sampling dish after dish of macaroni and cheese. Since Bacon Bash happens twice annually (once in the spring and once in the fall), this time around, Stocco says venues will offer more creative dishes, while the event this fall will focus on heartier cuisine like barbecue.

“(People will) be really surprised by the wide range of creative cuisine available at Bacon Bash,” Stocco said of this Friday’s event.

In addition to the countless bacon dishes, 350 pounds of bacon will be cooked to crispy perfection so people can sample each Dearborn variety on its own without being mixed into a dish. What’s better than bacon in its purest form?

Cabresto Tequila

(Photo provided by Regina Stocco of the Social Connection)

There will be a number of drinks on hand to whet your whistle between samples, including Labatt Blue and Labatt Blue Light, as well as cocktails from Tri-County Beverage, Cabresto Tequila and Tito’s Handmade Vodka.

“Tito’s and Cabresto Tequila are going to be doing some infused vodka and tequila (cocktails),” Stocco said. “Cabresto is going to do an applewood bacon-infused Bloody Rita.”

You had me at applewood-bacon infused!

During the event, attendees will have the opportunity to vote for the “Best of the Best” awards, which will be given out for Most Unique Bacon Creation, Most Flavorful Bacon Creation, Best All Around Bacon Creation and Best Bacon Sweets/Desserts. There will also be live music, sponsors giving away free swag and a photo booth to document all of your bacon-y memories.

A portion of Bacon Bash’s proceeds will benefit local 501©3 organization Healthy Detroit, a group that is dedicated to promoting a healthy, active lifestyle in the city of Detroit.

“We’ve partnered with Healthy Detroit on several events this year,” Stocco said. “They’re doing some really great work in the city of Detroit. They’re renovating parks and creating synergy in the neighborhood. We think that’s really cool.”

General admission tickets to Bacon Bash cost $40 and include all the bacon food samples you can eat, plus 10 beverage samples. If you’d rather be a VIP, you’ll get the same unlimited food samples, and 15 beverage samples for $60. General admission is at 7:30 p.m., while VIP entry is an hour earlier at 6:30 p.m.

If you find yourself needing more drink tickets than you bargained for, never fear: additional beverage tickets will be available for purchase.

“The weather always makes everything taste better. It’s going to be 70 (degrees on) Friday… People are kind of done fasting for bathing suit season and this is a time to get out and enjoy themselves,” Stocco said.

I’m sure that will not be a problem at Bacon Bash.

For more information on the event, and to purchase tickets, visit http://baconbash.com.