It's hard to improve bacon, but the Templeton Rye Distillery in Iowa hopes to do just by raising booze-infused pigs.
Twenty-five purebred Duroc pigs -- an older breed of an American domestic red swine with droopy ears -- will be enhanced with Templeton Rye whiskey.
The pigs, raised in an open-pen setting on an Iowa family farm, will eat a unique diet of feed infused with whiskey mash, which in turn changes the taste of the meat. The feed, created from spent-grain mash, was developed by Iowa State University swine nutrition expert Mark Bertram, according to the Templeton Rye Heritage Pork Project page.
The team at Templeton Rye Distillery aims to have each pig reach 210 pounds for optimum flavor and quality. The whiskey-enhanced pigs will be processed and ready to deliver to restaurants and famished foodies by June or July of this year.
"Whether you're a chef interested in creating a special menu event at your restaurant or a Bootleggers Society member interested in smoking a pig in your own back yard, we're currently entertaining all inquiries," Templeton Rye says on its Heritage Pork Project page.