Watch and Learn: Cured

Part of eating locally is knowing where your food comes from. Well, Allen Benton is a guy that a lot of Memphis’ best chefs already know, so now is your chance to learn a little about him and his country hams and bacons. If his name sounds familiar, it is because “Benton” is plastered on menus all over Memphis. It usually shows up right before the word “bacon.”

A friend of mine passed this video on to me, and I can’t believe I hadn’t seen it. Ole Miss and the Southern Foodways Alliance go hang out with Allen Benton and get some info on him and his incredible country hams.

I asked a couple of my buddies that are firm believers in Allen Benton and his products to say a little about it:

“Mr. Benton is the man! He does it the way it’s suppose to be done. There is nothing like it, I love that smoky flavor.”
-Michael Hudman, chef, Andrew Michael Italian Kitchen

“When I first tasted Allan Benton’s bacon, it was like a revolution in my mouth. I love it when the package from Benton’s Country Ham’s shows up….I make the delivery driver stick his nose right in the box as soon as I open it every time (true story, but I’ve never had anyone say no). Allan doesn’t just believe in old fashioned ways of curing hams and bacons, he lives that way, the way he was raised…he doesn’t employ the use of call waiting either. Your fortitude may just be rewarded by Allan himself answering the phone, he will get your order after a leisurely conversation.

We have three dogs and they are all named after things that are very important to us. We have Shelby for the county. Shelby had two puppies, one we named Pappy for the Van Winkle that we love and one Benton for some guy that makes great bacon.”
-Kelly English, chef, Restaurant Iris

High praise indeed! Enjoy the video then do one of two things to test it for yourself:

  1. Go eat somewhere that has it like Iris or Andrew Michael.
  2. Head to the Benton website and order up a ham and some bacon.
  3. Hell, just do both.

I’m choosing option 3. See ya.


you want to order that:

Benton’s Smoky Mountain Country Hams
2603 Hwy. 411 North
Madisonville, TN 37354-6356
Phone: (423) 442-5003

One thought on “Watch and Learn: Cured”

  1. My wife and I drove up to Madisonville on a whim to see where Bentons was. All I have to say is after talking and hanging out with Mr. Benton for pretty much the entire afternoon, he is the nicest person my wife and I have met in a long time. He took the time to show us his entire set up from start to finish, telling us how he got into the business and he never missed a beat by acknowledging all the locals who came in to buy product. Needless to say after driving home with around 100.00 worth of smoked pork product, my wife’s little car smelled like smoked pork for over a week… you guessed, we took it everywhere till the smell dissipated. He is truly an artisan who makes an exceptional product as it should be made.

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