The 13th edition of the traditional pork festival Fiesta Costumbrista del Chancho 2023, organized by Coexca and the Municipality of Talca, was the ideal setting to showcase and appreciate Chilean traditions, thanks to delicious and elaborate recipes using Chilean pork.
The heavy rain did not wash away the enthusiasm of thousands of people from Talca and nearby cities who got together to enjoy the traditions and food of the 13th Fiesta Costumbrista del Chancho, which took place on August 19 and 20 at Talca’s town square (Plaza de Armas). About 200,000 people had the opportunity to taste more than 20 pork-based recipes and tour the stalls offering regional handcrafts and products.
Approximately 20 Chilean and international chefs displayed their cooking mastery using pork from Campo Noble, a brand from Coexca, one of ChileCarne’s member companies. 200 kitchen assistants, most of them students from the Inacap vocational training school campus in Talca, helped the chefs make various dishes, proving that the new generations are keen to keep traditions alive.
“I want to thank all the neighbors from Talca, the Maule Region, and the entire country for joining us on the 13th edition of the festival. The weather was tough (…) but I hope they were able to enjoy themselves while spending some time with family, friends, and neighbors. We will be waiting for them next year, at a new edition that will be just as good or even better. We hope people enjoyed the tastings, folklore, crafts, and all the surprises we had in store for them,” said Juan Carlos Díaz, Mayor of Talca.
ChilePork was present at Campo Noble stall, where renowned Chilean chef Rodrigo Barañao and Woosuk Han, former chef of the South Korean embassy in Chile presented a food proposal that blended Asian and Chilean ingredients. Barañao and the chefs behind Damoa restaurant shared delicious food with attendees for about an hour.
It was a great opportunity for Chileans to try Korean food, as Chile and South Korea have an important trade relationship in pork. Hence, similar cultural exchanges should be expected. ChilePork, the leading brand that brings together all Chilean pork exporting companies, showed attendees why the South American country is the world’s seventh largest exporter of this protein.
“Cooking together, especially with friends, is a unique experience. Thanks to ChilePork, I had the opportunity to cook with my South Korean friends at one of the most prestigious traditional events in Chile. At the iconic Pork Festival, with thunder and lightning, we learned precious recipes from the Korean experts. I hope we can continue strengthening the ties between South Korea and Chile thanks to initiatives like ChilePork,” said chef Barañao.
“Damoa’s team was invited to represent South Korea at the event organized by ChilePork during the Pork Festival in Talca, Chile’s largest winter festival to introduce Korean food, particularly Galbijjim (braised short ribs) made with Chilean pork. We chose Galbijjim because we wanted to give Chileans a taste of the most traditional Korean food,” chef Han added.
Renowned restaurants and traditional crafts and products from Chile’s Maule Region were part of the Fiesta Costumbrista, as well as traditional dance and music shows. People could also visit stalls offering craft beer, wine, charcuterie, and attend the “Comic Oink,” a new space designed for children.
For Coexca’s General Manager, Guillermo García, it was “a great edition that overcame the wind and the rain, consolidating the great work Campo Noble’s team is doing on the ground. We are extremely proud. This is the result of our public-private partnership with the Municipality of Talca, which once again helped us have a beautiful festival, full of traditions appreciated by people from all over the country.”
An exciting addition to this year’s celebration was the barbecue competition. 16 teams from Chile, Argentina, Peru, and Venezuela had a cook-off at Diagonal Isidoro del Solar. Eventos de Fuego was crowned the winner, earning a ticket to a tournament in Brazil in 2024. “We are very happy because it turned out to be one of the festival’s main attractions,” said Manuel Cabezas, the event chef consultant.
Check out the event on our Instagram @chilepork or at https://youtu.be/zmp69YfKX_M.