After the Black Pig Restaurant in Čepin, this animal species now also has its festival! On May 10, Drenovci hosted the first Fajferica Gastro Show. Fajferica is the black Slavonian pig, the autochthonous pig created by crossbreeding the sows of the Swallow Belly Mangulica breed and boars of the Berkshire breed. Then the best sows were crossbred with boars of the Poland China pig. The breed was created in the second half of the 19th century at the Orlovnjak wasteland near Tenja, not far from Osijek, and was named after the owner of the estate, Count Dragutin Karlo Leopold Pfeifer.
The village of Drenovci is situated on the extreme south-eastern edge of Slavonia, also known as Cvelferija. Some would say that Cvelferija is located on the southwestern corner of Srijem and they would also not be mistaken. The boundary between Slavonia in the west and Srijem in the east is fluid, not strictly defined, and besides, the former Srijem County with its seat in Vukovar was an integral part of the old Slavonian kingdom, a subregion of Slavonia, so it is not wrong to say that Drenovci, as well as the whole of Cvelferija, is located in both Srijem and Slavonia. The name of this micro-region originates from the times of the Military Border (Latin: Confinium, German: the Militärgrenze) when the Sava River was a natural border that separated the Habsburg Monarchy from the Ottoman Empire.
At its peak, the Military Border stretched 1,850 kilometres in length, from the Adriatic Sea to the province of Erdelj in present-day Romania, consisting of seventeen regiments, of which three regiments (the seventh, eighth and ninth) represented the Slavonian military frontier. The regiments were divided into companies, and the area of today’s Cvelferija comprised the 12th company of the Brod regiment. In addition to Drenovci, Cvelferija includes the villages of Vrbanja, Soljani, Strošinci, Đurići, Račinovci, Gunja, Rajevo Selo and Posavski Podgajci. The last time this area was in the media focus was during catastrophic floods five years ago. Fortunately, many positive things are happening in this area, including the Fajferica Gastro Show.
The event took place at the Agricultural Entrepreneurial Incubator in Drenovci. It started at about 10 am with a small-scale fair of autochthonous products. Specialities made from black Slavonian pigs were paired with red wines of Iločki Podrumi and the dark beers of the Valens craft brewery from Vinkovci.
Chef Tomislav Špiček prepared treats for all the visitors. There is no need to spend too much time introducing him since he is well-known from various culinary programmes broadcast on national television stations.
Dark chocolate with pieces of Kulen was presented by Margareta Vučak, owner of the Veseli Vagon chocolate shop, whose motto is “fresh & furious”. The festival also included numerous lectures, with interesting topics such as “Why do we love pork?” and “Are fats being unfairly excluded from the menu?”
Fajferica Gastro Show also included a sales section, with black Slavonian pigs being on offer. I saw personally that a dozen of them were sold to the Karlovac area, indicating there is interest for the Fajferica pigs even beyond the borders of Slavonia and Baranja.
Cured meat products made from black Slavonian pigs, delicacies prepared by celebrated chefs, crafts beers and brilliant Srijem wines, unusual combinations of Kulen and chocolate, all this is the reason why the first Fajeferica Gastro Show fully met the expectations. I hope that the event will become a traditional one and that the next year it will make an additional step forward.
More Slavonia news can be found in the Lifestyle section.