Hispanic Heritage Month
By Terelle Jerricks, Managing Editor
The period between Sept. 15 and Oct. 15 is a designated time to recognize the Hispanic and Latino contributions to the American fabric we call the United States. Food, liquor, music and conversation are the best ways to learn.
¡Viva el Tequila!
The Museum of Latin American Art is hosting a soirée Sept. 17 that they call ¡Viva el Tequila! —a tequila tasting event where attendees can sample a variety of Mexico’s official liquor.
There will be an unlimited sampling of blanco, reposado and añejo tequilas. Attendees will also get to sample mezcal and learn the difference between these two popular spirits of the agave fruit. The sampling will be complemented with Mexican food.
The combination of the tequila, mezcal, the food and the music is what makes the Sept. 17 event particularly eclectic. Longtime East Los Angeles bands Quinto Sol and Subsuelo will be performing.
Quinto Sol is a reggae band, whose music is deeply rooted in community and roots music from the Caribbean and Africa.
Subsuelo is a DJ collective out of Boyle Heights and East Los Angeles, whose music includes musical genres of tropical funk, cumbia, hip-hop, flamenco and everything in between.
Participating brands include Apocalypto Tequila, Don Nacho Tequila, Herradura Tequila, Hacienda de Chihuahua, Suerte Tequila, Puno de Lobos Tequila
Mezcal: Sangre de Vida Mezcal, Mezcal Marques, Mezcal Vago
All guests are automatically entered for a chance to win a bottle of tequila. Attendees must be 21 and older to participate.
Time: 7 to 10 p.m. Sept. 17
Cost: $50 to $60
Venue: Museum of Latin American Art, 628 Alamitos Ave., Long Beach
Aquarium of the Pacific Tequila Dinner
The Aquarium of the Pacific is putting on a tequila dinner — a sustainable farm-to-table feast paired with Casa Mexico tequilas—on the Aquarium’s roof-top veranda on Sept. 22.
At this event the food has equal billing with the tequila.
The amuse buche (in this case, an hors d’oeuvre paired with the ideal Casa Mexico tequila) will be the duck confit croquette with Frog Hollow Farms plum chutney, followed by a three-course meal.
The first course will feature sustainable diver scallop crudo with pickled celery, Bebe Farms shaved radish, puffed quinoa and miso lime vinaigrette paired with Casa Mexico Blanco tequila.
The second course will feature smoked short rib, cold smoked with a cream corn timbale and tequila barbecue sauce paired with Casa Mexico Resposado tequila.
The dessert will feature dark chocolate mousse with California Haas avocado gelato and vanilla agave foam paired with Casa Mexico Añejo tequila.
There will even be vegetarian pairing menu due to popular demand. Just request it by Sept. 19.
Casa Mexico is a small batch, premium tequila company founded by Eric Buccio and his partners, Hollywood talent manager Mark Schulman, actor and television personality Mario Lopez and film and television producer Mark Roberts.
The tequila was Buccio’s brainchild, a vision he apparently had since his start marketing the energy drink, Red Bull, in its early days. He eventually saved enough money to purchase land in the highlands of Jalisco, Mexico — a place known for growing quality blue agave, a plant native to the hot and arid regions of Mexico and the southern United States.
Time: 6 to 9 p.m. Sept. 22
Cost: $65 to $75
Details: (562) 590-3100, http://tinyurl.com/Tequila-Dinner
Venue: Aquarium of the Pacific, 100 Aquarium Way, Long Beach
Highlight in the Month of August
If you can’t wait until the middle of September to get some culture into your system, you can always celebrate all things Japanese at the Yatai Food Festival on Aug. 27.
The Japan Alliance and Gardena Valley Japanese Cultural Institute are organizing this event, which will feature South Bay street food and a beer garden exclusively provided by Sapporo beer company.
Time: 5 p.m. Aug. 27
Cost: $5 to $10
Venue: Gardena Valley Japanese Cultural Institute, 1964 W. 162nd St., Gardena