Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Pork Therapy

"Porkchops and Bacon. My two favorite animals." - Homer Simpson

Normally this blog is dedicated to the adventures of my family and I as we go out and explore the world from behind the lens of a camera. I had such a wonderful experience at the Crystal Food Garden in St. John’s this past Saturday that I am going to have to take a bit of a detour just to share it with you.

The Crystal Food Garden is a food cart “pod” located on the corner of Lombard and Richmond, in the heart of St. John’s. This neighborhood has experienced quite the transformation in the past few years, but one thing that has not changed is the sense of community. As a result, the manager of the “pod” is starting an outdoor community market, which just happens to coincide with the St. John’s Farmer’s Market, which happens just a few blocks up the street (and does not include craft, art and service vendors). My friend Kerri (who you may know as Earringopia from her beautiful jewelry) and I decided this was a great opportunity to get out, enjoy the sunshine, and meet some great new people, while showing off our respective wares. The fact that this would be on the same lot as some great looking food carts was an added bonus.

Earringopia and Wahkeena Photo's Booth

Whenever we do these events, we can always count on a few friends (you know who you are) coming down to hang out with us, which is always so appreciated. This time we had the added bonus of the beautifully landscaped grounds, the many picnic tables, and the food carts to feed us, when lent to an extra enjoyable time had by all.

Our friend Kari and her daughter Sophia stopping by the booth.

Many great food items were sampled. The iced tea and drunken noodles from Anya’s Thai, the pulled pork sandwich from Savvy J’s, but there was one runaway favorite: STICK-IT.

My love of all things pork is well known. Who else do you know that makes salted bacon fudge or plans trips around the best stops for biscuits and gravy? So how could I turn down a whole pork chop on a stick? This was something I absolutely had to sample.

STICK-IT brines their pork chops for at least 24 hours before cooking. I am not sure what is in their mixture, and I know enough about chef etiquette not to ask for his secrets (though I really wanted to try and get it out of him). They are then grilled on a flaming hot grill.

My pork on the grill.
After being grilled to perfection, they are skewered and served on a stick. None of the normal pesky forks and knives are needed, just eat it like a caveman. Yes, people, I present to you: the “Pork Chop Lollipop”--a phrase I am happy to have coined and not yet copyrighted. Quite literally, once of the best pieces of pork to ever cross my lips, which is certainly saying something.

Pork chop lollipop
We had such a great time last Saturday that we will be returning this weekend. The fact that there are pork chop lollipops in such close proximity may or may not be one of the major contributing factors. Kerri and I thought it would be great fun if we got a group of people together to hang out and sample this culinary delight (along with the others available here) this Saturday when we return. So, what do you say? Pork Chop Lollipop Gathering, 2:00ish, at the Crystal Food Garden in St. John’s? We would love to see you all there!!

PS: If you don’t love pork as much as I do, STICK-IT also offers rib eye steaks, chicken and corn, and yes, they all come on a stick.

Kerri will also have a limited supply of bacon cinnamon rolls for the early birds. So, if you can't make the official pork gathering and arrive before the food carts open around noon, we will still have some delicious treats for you. But only while supplies last.

Getting there:

The Crystal Food Garden is located on the 8200 block of North Lombard, on the corner of Richmond. There is plenty of parking available both in the adjacent lot and on the street. If you don't drive, the area is served by four different bus lines.

The St. John's Community Market is open from 10:00 to 6:00, a few blocks down Lombard from the St. John's Farmers Market, just before you enter the heart of downtown St. John's.

Related Links:

Crystal Food Garden

St. John's Farmer's Market 

Note: The farmer's market does not include any craft, art, or service booths.

STICK-IT (@foodonastick on Twitter)

Earringopia on Etsy

Wahkeena Exposures Photography on Etsy


  1. First of all the quote from Homer Simpson at the top of the blog is priceless. I laughed out loud at that. The rest of the blog is excellent reading. We really did have a great time. I hope everybody comes out this Saturday to enjoy another great day with us, not to mention pork therapy in savory and sweet ways!

  2. oh man that sounds good! I hope to make it but not sure yet. This is a crazy week for me but will try.