Of course just after posting the news about Pilar Cabrera being in town, we learned about another visiting chef from Oaxaca unveiling her new cookbook in Oakland. Chef Susana Trilling, founder of Seasons of My Heart cooking school in San Augustin,
[caption id="attachment_4118" align="alignright" width="150"] The menu for the evening[/caption] Jonathan Barbieri, artist and owner of the mezcal brand Pierde Almas, knows how to tell a story, as evidenced by the audience at Oakland’s Calavera entranced by his words describing the days of selling mezcal when it was illegal contraband. Produced in palenques outside of small pueblos and then sold by women who were more likely to avoid being stopped by authorities, it is a romantic tale and sets a nostalgic mood. It lays the perfect foundation for the bigger story that night - his latest project is producing an “ancestral corn” whiskey from the very palenques that now fuel the burgeoning mezcal industry.
Yesterday was a good day. I had a nice lunch at Calavera with Susan and then spent a little over two hours in Ulises Torrentera's "Arte del Mezcal West Coast Tour" sponsored by Wahaka and organized by the same brand's Raza Zaidi.
I had the lucky opportunity to check out Calavera Restaurant in Oakland ahead of its official open. This is Chris Pastena's latest creation after Chop Bar, Tribune Tavern and Lungomare. I'd heard about Calavera a while back and was especially excited