Corn and Grains and Koji

Boston Fermentation Festival

  • SUNDAY, AUGUST 18, 2019
  • 10:00 AM  4:00 PM

The 2019 Boston Fermentation Festival on Sunday, August 18th – mark your calendars for this *free* festival that celebrates all things fermented! 

Misos and Tasty Pastes from their recent book, Miso, Tempeh, Natto and other Tasty Ferments will be at 2019 Boston Fermentation Festival

Koji Workshop Weekend Intensive

  • Saturday, August 24 and Sunday, August 25th, 2019
  • Tickets
  • Chapel Hill, NC  (MAP)

We welcome you to join us for our first koji workshop in North Carolina hosted by The Eco-Institute at Pickards Mountain and Rich Shih of OurCookQuest. We are holding back-to-back sessions over two days, at The Eco-Institute’s farm and retreat center located in the outskirts of Chapel Hill, NC. The goal is to help you understand the fundamentals and versatility of this amazing ingredient to add depth to your dishes, while creating a network of relationships.

Day 1 Saturday, August 24: Fundamentals. The first block will cover a variety of applications. We will demonstrate how to make shio koji (umami marinade), kojizuke (pickles) and amazake (a sweet rice drink) as well as how to use them in multiple ways to make your food more delicious. During the afternoon session, guests will learn the straightforward process of making basic rice koji using aspergillus oryzae (koji-kin) spores.

We will cover incubator options and show you how to build two simple setups, one with an immersion circulator and the other with a cooler and inexpensive aquarium components.

At the end of the afternoon session, you will make your own shio koji to take some umami magic home.

Day 2 Sunday, August 25: Advanced Class. This class is geared towards folks in the food industry and those who already have a basic understanding of koji applications, including those who enrolled in the Fundamentals class. We’ll cover the following makes: modern versions of soy sauce and douchi; alcohol and vinegar; animal product based condiments and charcuterie.

We will also teach fresh koji applications: fruit, drinks and a sweet base for desserts. Advanced koji making with a variety of starch mediums will be covered as well.

At the end, we will discuss how to move towards a food-waste-free kitchen.

In both sessions there will be opportunities to connect with other chefs and like-minded food enthusiasts. This is an opportunity to build connections and learn together on land that has been building the human-Earth relationship creatively and with patience, like a koji chef does with their product.

For more information on The Eco-Institute, check out or on Instagram. To learn about Rich Shih, visit or @ourcookquest on Instagram.

  • $120: Day 1 (Beginner Course
  • $120: Day 2 (Advanced Course)
  • $200: (Both Courses)

10th Annual Pig Island 2019 on September 7

Join Food Karma Projects on September 7, 2019 for Pig Island NYC. More than 20 chefs will come together for this pork-laden festival on the Red Hook, Brooklyn Waterfront and compete for the most delicious porcine dishes. There will also be craft beer, hard cider, spirits, and other food offerings – all-included with a general admissions ticket

  • Saturday, September 7, 2019
  • Tickets – Early Bird All-Inclusive Tickets –$65  Food, Drinks & Fun with nothing to buy onsite! Increasing to $75 later this summer. VIP Private Table, Includes a private tent, table, chairs and all-inclusive tickets for 6 people.  Includes 6 t-shirts and your own cooler of beer, wine, and cider. $1,000. Limited number available. All sales are final. Rain or shine. 21+ event.
  • Erie Basin Park, Red Hook, Brooklyn  (MAP)

Pig Island is proud to partner up with Friends of Firefighters to support the FDNY! FDNY Firefighters will be competing on behalf of Friends of Firefighters, a New York-based non-profit providing counseling and wellness services to FDNY Firefighters and their families.

This year marks the 10th Annual Pig Island NYC and we are proud to honor our founding mission by supporting small, sustainable farms with the best practices!

More than 20 chefs will come together for this pork-laden festival on the Red Hook, Brooklyn Waterfront and compete for the most delicious porcine dishes. 

The tickets are all-inclusive: food, drinks, craft beer, hard cider, whiskeys, live music and more, including a special Mexcal Zone with Mezcal De Leyenda and Several Other Brands of Authentic Mezcals from
Oaxaca, Mexico

We Are Excited To Welcome A New Group of Chef Competitors!
Since  Big Apple BBQ isn’t around this summer, Pig Island will be picking up the slack to provide a new home to these chefs!

  • Tank Jackson of Charleston’s Holy City Hogs will be joined by Chopped champion Ed Randolph, the owner of Handsome Devil BBQ and author of Smoked
  • Carl Ruiz and Mario Chape, La Cubana, New York featuring Smokey Boys BBQ and New England Meat Company
  • Phil Wingo,  PorkMafia

The Pig Island NYC Returning Champions
These former winners will be sure to bring their A-game to compete against a larger BBQ scene!

  • Rodrigo Duarte, Caseiro e Bom, New Jersey
    Rodrigo is the only pig farmer in America certified to raise pure ibérico pigs and he is the defender of the Best Whole Hog Award. His pigs are fed a special diet of vegetables, acorns, and chestnuts to give their meat a rich, nutty flavor.
  • Roxanne Spruance, The Butcher, The History Channel, New York
  • Jason Fox, Hudson and Charles, New York
  • Chef Jesse Jones, “POW! My Life in 40 Feasts”

This festival will feature over 20 chefs!

  • Danny Mena of La Loncheria, New York will be competing in addition to promoting his newest cookbook, Made in Mexico: The Cookbook: Classic And Contemporary Recipes From Mexico City
  • Flying Pigs Farm in Washington Country, NY will have a chef station featuring a special guest!
  • Jean Paul Bourgeois, former executive chef and pitmaster at Blue Smoke will be doing a special skillet demo over open fire.

Plus These NYC Barbecue Favorites!

Many of these chefs have collected trophies and honorable mentions this year at Brisket King NYC and Rib King NYC!

  • Humberto Guallpa, Freemans Restaurant, New York
  • Matthew Worgul, Gentle Giant Barbecue, New York
  • Cenobio Canalizo and Eric Springer, Morgan’s BBQ, New York
  • Corey Cash, Cash Only BBQ, New York
  • Billy Kooper, Route 66 Smokehouse, New York
  • Jase Franklyn, Jase BBQ, New York
  • Thomas Perone, The Pig Guy, New York
  • Robbie Richter, Founding pitmaster of Hill Country Barbecue
  • Seth Beverly, Pig & Peach NYC
  • Rob Cho, Kimchi Smoke Barbecue, New Jersey


  • Craft Beer, Featuring Sixpoint Brewery, Singha Beer and Others
  • Hard Cider, Featuring Eden, Austin East, Koppaberg Cider, and  Others
  • Spirits, Featuring Knob Creek Bourbon, Laphroaig Scotch, Irish Whiskey, NY Distilling, NY Distilling, Empire Ryes, ESP Gins, Olde New York Farm Distillery, Breukelen Distilling and Others
  • There will also be wine, non-alcoholic beverages, and plenty of water!

Pig Island was conceived after Jimmy Carbone and Josh Ozersky teamed up to produce Meatopia 2010. While Meatopia has since developed nto an international food festival, Food Karma sought to embrace the burgeoning farm-to-table movement and support sustainable practices. 

By providing NYC Chefs with pigs purchased directly from small farms, PigIsland aims to educate consumers and serve delicious food! This year PigIsland is proud to source from Flying Pigs Farm in Washington County, NY.

In the 10 years since Pig Island was founded, Jimmy has worked to uphold the original vision for Pig Island, expanding the event’s reach, growing relationships with more farms and chefs, working with community partners like Friends of Firefighters, and creating the I Like Pig cookbookFor the 10th anniversary of Pig Island, we would like to honor Josh Ozersky, whose passion and creativity continue to inspire this event.

Jimmy Carbone, the producer of PigIsland, NYC teamed up with James Beard Award winning cookbook author Rachel Wharton to create a cookbook full of porcine goodness. Every year dozens of chefs come together and celebrate the agricultural bounty of the tri-state area at Pig Island. I Like Pig serves up some of the most popular recipes from the first four years of PigIsland. Download the eBook here for $1.99

Hands-on Miso Class at Leaman’s in the Amish Country

  • 2:00 PM  3:30 PM
Hands-on Miso Class at Leaman's in the Amish Country

Leaman’s will be hosting their first-ever miso making class at their store in Kidron Ohio. More class and ticket information here.

Koji Magic

  • 3:30 PM  5:30 PM
Koji Magic

This is a really special class! Kirsten & Christopher Shockey, award winning authors of Fermented Vegetables and Fiery Ferments, will join us to discuss koji and all of its applications as detailed in their new book Miso, Tempeh, Natto & Other Tasty Ferments. This book is heralded as one of the best books ever written on the subject of koji and the foods made with it. Learn all about what koji is and how to use it. We’ll cover miso, amazake, shio-koji, soy sauce, and sake plus new and modern applications.

Cost: $55 and includes a signed copy of Miso, Tempeh, Natto & Other Tasty Ferments.
$40 without a book

Call: 216-912-8203 to reserve a spot. Limited spaces available.

Mad for Miso

  • 11:00 PM to 4:00 PM
  • Morganics Family Farm, NJ (map)

This workshop is hands-on, taste bud-interactive, and take-home. 

Purchase on a sliding scale, $50-75. A light lunch will be provided and each student will go home with a pint of to-be miso. 

Work-trade opportunities are also available. For more information, please contact Tara at 

Space is limited. This will be a small class with constant teacher-student interaction.

Sprouted, Nixtamalized, Popped Corn made into a jiang (miso). (Recipe)

Corn Symposium – September 8 and September 9

  • Sunday, September 8, 2019
  • 9:00 AM to  3:00 PM
  • New School, Tishman Auditorium, New York City (Map)

Corn Symposium is a two-day event dedicated to all things corn. Bringing together a wide range of speakers, presenters, chefs, farmers, scientists, teachers, topics and other related programming, our goal is to shed light on corn, and this omnipresent ingredient.

The first day, Sunday September 8th, will be a day spent at The New School’s Tishman Auditorium, hearing lectures and panels; viewing presentations; participating in discussions; meeting and connecting with people over corn. The tickets for the first day is $100, and includes lunch. This first day is presented in collaboration with Food Studies program at The New School.

The second day, Monday September 9th, will be a day of hands on classes, tastings and demos where techniques, flavors and experiences will be shared in smaller, more intimate groups at various kitchens in and around the city. (Ticketed separately, you can choose your own adventure and buy tickets a la carte).

TOPIC48 SCHOLARSHIP. Because we want our events to be accessible and inclusive, we try to keep our ticket prices relatively low. However, we recognize that for some people, the cost may still be a bit of a stretch. If you would like to attend the symposium but find the ticket price out of reach, please email us and tell us a little bit about yourself – where you work, and why you would like to attend. We will be reserving several tickets at a heavily discounted rate.

Corn Amasake Bread by culturesgroup

Corn Symposium – Day 2

  • Monday, SEPTEMBER 9 , 2019
  • 11:00 AM –  2:00 PM
  • Resobox, East Village New York, New York (Map)
  • Class/Demonstration/Tastings (go to Register and scroll down) – Corn is a flavorful component of many dishes worldwide. Asian ferments like miso, tempeh, shoyu, pickles, amasake and shio koji, and even sake and vinegar, can be made with corn. Chef Ken Fornataro of culturesgroup and Kirsten Shockey of will demonstrate how wild and cultured microbes like koji (miso, sake, shio koji), lactobacteria (pickles) and Rhizopus (tempeh, oncom) make tasty, unique and nutritious foods. Class participants will be tasting everything from soups to salads to breads and even corn nuts during this luncheon class, while learning about how to harness the power of microbes to make these items. We’ll have foods that are vegan, and some that are not to demonstrate the versatility of these techniques, and why you should always have these items on hand. Monday, September 9th 11am to 2pm Resobox, East Village 91 E 3rd St, New York, NY 10003

Microbrewing and Fermentation Workshop

  • Monday, SEPTEMBER 9 , 2019
  • 4:00 PM –  6:00 PM
  • Private Brewery Space, Fifth Hammer Brewing Company (Map)

The first culturesgroup meeting of people into microbrewing and fermentation of everything from sake to beer to kombucha to rice, barley or wheat based beverages to meads and doboroku.

This event is limited to 30 people. Bring your own brews if you would like the group to try it! There is no charge for the event, but you can buy any one of the special brews on tap or other beverages (some non-alcoholic)

Southeastern Grain Gathering

Group of Speakres and Workshop Leaders
  • Sunday, September 15, 2019 and Monday, September 16, 2019
  • Registration Price: $275.00
  • University of Kentucky Horticulture Research Farm, 4321 Emmert Farm Lane, Lexington, KY (Map)

The first Southeastern Grain Gathering will feature keynote talks on the history of cooking across the world and the origin and rebirth of southern cuisine; hands-on workshops from wood fired pizza to sourdough rye loaves to freshly milled whole grain bagels; and conversations about local small grain value chains featuring the North Carolina farmer-miller-baker experience.

A celebration and learning exchange for anyone with an interest in grains from our Southeast region. Farmers, millers, bakers, chefs, researchers, maltsters, brewers, distillers and consumers – from producers to end users – will build community and conversation around small grain value chains in our region. This event will guide the next steps in building a local grain movement in the Southeast.

Roundtable Discussion with NYC Contributors to our new Book

Roundtable Discussion

  • 7:30 PM  8:30 PM

We will be discussing Miso, Tempeh, Natto & Other Tasty Ferments with three contributors to it, all based in the New York area! Cheryl Paswater of Contraband Ferments, Ken Fornataro of culturesgroup and Ann Yonetani of NYrture New York Natto will be joining us at the Greenlight Bookstore at Prospect Lefferts Gardens in Brooklyn.

This will be one of those magical evenings when any questions can be answered, maybe with different answers, but all from a place of knowledge and passion for these ferments. We hope you can join us and fill the bookstore. Sampling and signing (sampling of tasty ferments, signing of books) although if you come with your favorite tub of miso we will do our best to sign it for you.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is image.png

Kids and Fun Ferments

  • Wednesday, SEPTEMBER 18 , 2019
  • 3:00 PM –  5:00 PM
  • Resobox, Long Island City, New York (Map)

For young fermentation enthusiasts (or curious and adult accompanied kids) as well as beginners of any age this event provides an opportunity tochoose your miso soup option from over a dozen different types of miso Ken has been making for decades.

Not only will you get to find out what miso is by tasting it, we’ll have the fixings for those kids that like to mash up big bowls of beans and rice with their hands. The definition of fun!

Kirsten and Christopher Shockey of Ferment.Works describe most of the things we’ll have in their new book, but you get to ask an experienced Mom and Dad questions about the stuff. And they will answer you!

Fermenting and Brewing Fun for Adults

  • Wednesday, SEPTEMBER 18 , 2019
  • 7:00 PM –  9:00 PM
  • Resobox, Long Island City, New York (Map)
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is bdd9d541-e64b-4756-b90d-a266475aab39.jpg
Art by Ann Otto, gifted to Chef Ken Fornataro of culturesgroup

An evening demonstration and tasting that follows up on our first culturesgroup event at The Fifth Hammer Brewing Company in Long Island City.

Ken Fornataro culturesgroup and Christopher and Kirsten Shockey or Ferment Works will provide tastes and discuss microbrewing – like, things you can reasonably do at home – of things like sake and a country style sake called doboroku, as well as amasake, shoyu, vinegar, and other grain beverages. A lot of these things are included in their book.

Contact Us

Recent Posts

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.