The Instructors

Pigstock: Camp Charcuterie


Chef Brian Polcyn is an award-winning chef and nationally recognized charcuterie expert. In addition to running two of Michigan’s best restaurants, he is also a chef instructor at Schoolcraft College in Livonia. He and Michael Ruhlman were co-authors of the 2005 book, Charcuterie, considered by many to be one of the most accessible books available on the topic. Both Brian and this book have been nominated for James Beard awards.

Michael Ruhlman is a well-known author, food blogger, cook and journalist whose mission is to translate the chef’s craft for every kitchen. He has authored or co-authored more than a dozen books about food and cooking, including Ruhlman’s Twenty, which won both a James Beard Foundation award and an IACP award.

Kate Hill is a teacher, coach, cook, mentor and author with more than 40 years of experience in the food world. When she isn’t traveling the world giving workshops or collaborating with other heads in her field, she leads charcuterie programs and courses at her home and school in France, the Kitchen at Camont. Since her arrival in 1991, Kate has forged deep ties with butchers, charcutiers, and other producers in Gascony and in the Basque Country. This unique combination of experience and networking has placed her at the forefront of the Whole Carcass butchering movement and only further strengthens her reach as a teacher and communicator on a global scale.

Kate's work and her school, Kitchen at Camont, have been featured in many publications including a collaboration with Michael Ruhlman for Conde Nast Traveler, PBS, BBC’s French Odyssey with Rick Stein, ARTE’s Les Routes Mythiques d l’Europe. She has also been featured in print and online in Food & Wine, Bon Appetite, Dish, Appellation, Maison Sud Ouest, the New York Times, the LA Times, the London Times, and the Boston Globe.

Currently, she is the CEO of Grrls Meat Camp, an international organization which aims to inspire, instruct and initiate sisterhood of farmers, butchers, cooks, and teachers giving voice to women.

To learn more about the programs and courses that Kate offers, visit her website,

Dominique is a French trained butcher and charcutier who runs a farm-to-retail business with his wife Christiane and three brothers on their 100-acre family farm, Ferme Baradieu in South West France. For three generations, the Chapolard Family has reared their own pigs, grown all the grain needed to feed them, butchered on-site, and transformed the meat into traditional charcuterie to be sold directly to loyal customers at local farmers markets. We call this process “seed-to-sausage”. 

Dominique embodies the traditions of his craft and culture, his commitment to rural economics, and an innate love of teaching. As a former headmaster of a regional agricultural school, Dominique teaches the French method of butchery alongside Kate Hill in workshops across the globe.

Together, Kate and Dominique present both the theory and practical study of whole carcass butchery, specifically for making French charcuterie.

Dr. Michele Pfannenstiel is Dirigo Food Safety’s President and CEO. Dr. P earned her BA in Economics and Geology from Wellesley College, after which she served in the Peace Corps in Irbid, Jordan. In her second year of study at the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine, the future Dr. P was chosen for the prestigious Health Professions Scholarship Program through the US Army. Upon receiving her DVM, Dr. P commissioned into the US Army Veterinary Corps, where she learned the food safety skills she now brings to producers and processors across the country. After fulfilling her active duty commitment, Dr. P settled with her family in Southern Maine, where they raise chickens and the occasional ruminant, experiment in the kitchen, and explore the woods around their home. 

Dr. P is a certified HACCP auditor through ASQ. A sought after speaker, Dr. P has taught food safety workshops at the Stone Barns Center, Pigstock, the Wallace Center Food Hub Conference, the New England Meat Conference, and the Empowering Women Veterans in Business and Agriculture Conference.

Nathan Colello Gilmour is Dirigo Food Safety's Systems Analyst. Nathan received a BA from Kalamazoo College in 2012, double majoring in German Studies and Philosophy with a concentration in Critical Theory, winning both his department’s highest honors. He was a finalist for the Fulbright ETA program to Germany, but instead he chose an Internship Residency with the Rome Sustainable Food Project in Rome, Italy for the Fall term of 2012. He started his food career at a very young age working in the dish pits of summer camps in his hometown, but swiftly moved up the ranks, designing, building and running a 300+ seat fast-casual restaurant by the age of 23.

Nathan has worked in kitchens on four continents; from the cutting rooms at Dario’s Macelleria Cecchini in Panzano to the back streets of Fez making couscous with grandmas in their homes, Nathan values on-the-ground experiences above all. Most recently, Nathan has been working and traveling throughout Western Europe alongside his mentor Kate Hill, assisting in her teaching school, Kitchen at Camont, while editing and designing her most recent written work Cassoulet: a French Obsession.

In 2015, Nathan worked closely with the smoker-building company J&R Manufacturing and the restaurant The Beast (Paris, France) in a consulting and residency capacity, as well as cooking with the Brussels-based food and design consulting firm, Bouchee-Double, near Lausanne, Switzerland. 

Chef Sarah Welch, Volunteer Manager for Pigstock, knows that with Pigstock comes a lot of preparation, moving pigs around and getting each workshop ready for the next topic. Sarah joins us this year to oversee the team that will get this done!  Chef Sarah is the Executive Chef of both Republic Tavern and Parks & Rec. Diner. Her time learning whole animal butchery at Forest Grill right after Culinary School as sous chef for Brian Polcyn allowed her to train her team on the benefits of using every part of the animal. Extensive self teaching and interest in the maximum utilization of every product has yielded an ever-changing menu at both restaurants based on head-to-tail cooking sourced entirely from local meat producers. Sarah has worked closely with area farms to identify ingredients deserving of the spotlight in one of Detroit’s most historic buildings. She continues to pursue her passion of preservation, whole product utilization and local network building through the attendance and participation of events just like Pigstock TC. 


The real genius of Pigstock is the team of masterful teachers. Their gift of knowledge, passion and expertise is truly inspirational. I highly recommend Pigstock to anyone interested in our food culture and food systems. Bravo to Cherry Capital Foods for putting it all together!

Kent Rigsby
Chef & Proprietor
Rigsby's Kitchen
Columbus, OH