“Anyone who can leave the Yucatán with indifference has never been an artist and will never be a scholar.”
-Claude-Joseph Désiré Charnay, 1863
We were deep inland in the Yucatàn exploring the Spanish colonial streets of Mérida when we were ushered through a back alley, past an outdoor grill filled with smoking chili peppers, through a velvet curtain, and into a small, dimly lit speakeasy. They served us a simple tostada with charred local zucchini, crispy corn, and a blended avocado, habanero, and pumpkin seed sauce. The mezcal was softened with backyard pineapple juice and you could smell the fresh smoke from the local distillery.
Laura and I clinked glasses — “We gotta bring this home for people.” We want you to get a taste of this place. For one night, we’re turning our West Seattle home into an intimate homage to the peninsula that has so captured our hearts. Join us for dinner and get a small glimpse into why our souls are so caught up in the Yucatàn.
This isn’t just another dinner out.
But how to begin telling you about this gorgeous little corner of the world in just a few minutes? We could start with the history: deep Mayan roots with a European mind (for a while there in the mid-1800s, Yucatán even seceded from Mexico to form its own independent state). Or we could start with the healing waters of the local cenotes, the clear underground pools dotting the peninsula, the best swimming we know. And maybe grab a seat, because we could talk for quite a while about the food, which is decidedly its own; drawing flavor influences from not only the local Mayan and Mexican cuisines but also from Caribbean, North African, and European palates. Or we could tell you about how the philosophy of local, slow food is more applicable here than almost anywhere else we know: being so far removed from the rest of Mexico means food absolutely must be local and hyper fresh. Think farm to table (or should we say granja a mesa?), before Brooklyn even knew what that meant.
In short, the Yucatán is a place all its own. Surrounded by the sea, with flavors that even the most seasoned traveler has most likely never discovered, this Moveable Feast popup will be a short explorations of the flavors and culture that have sprung from this unique history. In our many visits to the Yucatán, this place has always found new ways to amaze us with its flavors, its weather, its calm demeanor and deep care for quality. Its complex history melds Mayan roots with Spanish ideas, layered onto a loose relationship with the rest of Mexico. And we want you to taste all of that, if only for one night.
Let’s talk food…
Barriga llena, corazón contento. (Full stomach, happy heart.)
You don’t even know what you don’t know. Historically and geographically, Yucatecan cuisine is a world apart from Mexico. Smoke, fire, spice, citrus, cacao, vanilla — all come together to make a cuisine that is rooted in Maya, and then blend that with what European contact brought to the table – garbanzos, olive oil, vinegar, black pepper, olives, almonds – only then do you get a fuller picture of what the peninsula has to offer. We’re bringing ingredients from the Mayan table and combining them with fresh and in season produce from here in the PNW to make plates that would make a Yucatecan abuela proud.
Here’s what we’re serving up:
Yucatàn style ceviche – carrot aguachile with shrimp
Grilled spring vegetables with chamoy
Salmon, tomatoes and sikil pak
Pork spareribs with charred pineapple salsa
Chocolate, berries, cream, cinnamon
And finally, the feast will include Mezcal, you enchanting mistress, you. They say that tequila is to wake the living– Mezcal is to wake the dead. Whatever your notion is of Mezcal, come join us with an open mind for a taste of single village Mezcals, learn about the mysterious liquor, and why it probably belongs in your cup more often.
Includes five-course dinner and two pairings.
Tickets are extremely limited and can be purchased through Brown Paper Tickets.
Click here to reserve your seat at the table. We can’t wait to have you over for dinner!