2016 Minnesota Garlic Fest welcomes the King of Pork

Farm Forum

The 11th annual Minnesota Garlic Festival, the region’s premier event for lovers of garlic, great local foods and good times, is set for 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sat., Aug. 13, at the McLeod County Fairgrounds in Hutchinson, Minn. Family friendly, fun-filled and fragrant, this festival features local foods prepared by chefs from the state’s finest restaurants, marvelous music, area artisans, goofy games … and lots of garlic available for purchase direct from the farm.

Hosted by the Crow River Chapter of the Sustainable Farming Association, this unique event celebrates and supports sustainable farmers, vital rural communities throughout Minnesota, and a healthy environment.

An exciting addition to this year’s festival is the presence of Jorge Guzman, executive chef of Surly Brewing Company and newly crowned “King of Pork” by Cochon 555, who with his pig roast crew will start cooking a hog on an open flame the evening before the festival begins, continuing through the night and all the next day – finally serving it to festival-goers at 5 p.m.

In addition to the pork roast is the “Great ‘Scape Café,” a pop-up restaurant in the heart of the festival that opens at 11 a.m. and is operated by some of the Twin Cities’ best loved and most respected restaurants, including Birchwood Café, Tilia, Common Roots, Haute Dish and Bachelor Farmer. As always, The Great ‘Scape café serves a specially prepared menu featuring the delicious bounty from Minnesota farms.

Of course, many people who go to the Minnesota Garlic Festival do so to learn about, purchase and enjoy the upper Midwest’s finest garlic. Growers from across the region will have the first of their fresh gourmet garlic crop at the festival to purchase. There are over 100 varieties of garlic grown here, all planted in the fall, harvested in July, and cured to perfection just in time for the festival.

The Minnesota Garlic Festival is a perfect summer outing for the entire family that includes kite-flying, all-day kids programming, a funky parade, garlic ice cream, live music and more.

Admission is $5/adult and FREE for children 12 and under. Parking is $1/vehicle with proceeds going to a local boy scout troop. For more information on the festival, and to download a 2-for-1 ticket coupon, visit Find regular updates on the Crow River Sustainable Farming Association Facebook page and following the hashtag #MNGarlicFest.