Cowabunga is Seattle Met's ode to boeuf—a meeting of meats, a proffering of protein, a blessing of burgers, with a dash of dairy, too. It's all going down November 10–12: a three-day event in which Seattle chefs, restaurants, and purveyors of all things beef and non- (think: ice cream from Salt and Straw and Full Tilt, a french fry bar, pastries from Choukette, brownies from Cubes Baking Co.) will descend upon South Lake Union. Forget soirees and shindigs, Friday brings a Burger Bash competition; Saturday evening there's Seared, which is like a steak-cation...because it's all you ever wanted. (There, I did it, sorrynotsorry.) At Seared, be transported to the quintessential steak house that will just so happen to have a dessert competition going on, too. Then both Saturday and Sunday, there will be The Big Tent and The Little Calf Tent: the former will house chef demos, butchery workshops, and No Cow Left Behind, a festival of under-appreciated cuts of beef; the latter will focus on all things dairy—an Ellenos yogurt bar, plus a contest between the city's favorite ice cream gurus. Or, cap off your weekend in the form of Sunday Brunch.
It's a meaty event, to be sure. Here are five reasons why you'll want to be there:
It's not just standing around and eating.
Not that there's anything wrong with the simple pleasure of grazing, drinking, and roaming about, much like a cow might do. But Cowabunga's got a lot more going on. Jack Timmons of Jack’s BBQ, a man who knows his 'cue, will talk Texan barbecue history for his demo. And Grant Crilly, cofounder of ChefSteps, will give you a crash course in sous vide cookery, showing how anyone can cook the ultimate steak—as in, evenly done, impress-everyone-you-know kind of steak.
Three words: smoked cow tongue.
No Cow Left Behind in the Big Tent will have beef, yes—but the more interesting, under-utilized cuts. Mark Schroder, a Joule alum who recently opened the lovely Opus Co. in Phinney Ridge, will be slinging smoked cow tongue. You want this. Meanwhile, Stuart Lane of Capitol Hill's Spinasse will be looking to sweep the competition with a tripe dish. It's bound to be offal-ly good (but not awful like that pun).
Seared is the swanky, baller party you always wanted to go to.
A live big band. Some cigar rollers. A late night burlesque show. Steak-house-meets-social-club vibes. A condiment bar—which doesn't mean taking shots of A-1 sauce, but who knows where the night will go. Plus, a dessert competition because apparently Seared isn't indulgent enough already. Thomas Sheehan (Red Cow), David Orozco (Asadero Ballard), Tess Thomas (Emma's BBQ), and more will all be throwing down seared sustenance.
The milkshakes bring all the boys (and all people, really) to the yard.
The Little Calf Tent will be a den of dairy, where there will be cheese tastings, an Ellenos yogurt bar outfitted with fixins, plus ice cream heaven from Salt and Straw, Full Tilt (hey, its new Capitol Hill outpost just opened if you can't wait until November), and other milk-based delights.
You can bring the kiddos on Sunday.
Come one, come all ages. Sunday starts with a brunch feast, which will pivot into a day spent in The Tents. Breakfast tacos, grits, midday ice cream...everyone wins.