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‘Modern Mexican’ Steps Into the Spotlight - The New York Times
"Rosio Sánchez, a Mexican-American chef who lives in Copenhagen, makes the best tortillas in Scandinavia.

That, she admits, isn’t necessarily saying much — like laying claim to the best pizza in Indonesia.

“It was so much worse,” she said, describing the state of Mexican food when she arrived in 2010 to work as the pastry chef at the celebrated restaurant Noma. “Imagine the worst Tex-Mex food in America, and imagine that being passed on like a game of telephone, by people who have no idea what real Mexican food is.”

That is beginning to change, and not only in Copenhagen, where Ms. Sánchez has opened a taqueria with freshly ground, hand-pressed corn tortillas.

It goes far beyond tacos and tortillas, though: Mexican cuisine has made the leap to the global stage of fine dining. Restaurants like Pujol, Rosetta and Quintonil in Mexico City; Laja and Malva in Baja California; Origen in Oaxaca; and Hartwood here in Tulum all produce creative, world-class menus from the lush variety of fruit, fish, vegetables, herbs, grains and flowers that grow around them.

In places like Barcelona, London and Melbourne, as well as Chicago, Los Angeles and New York, food lovers are seeing the cuisine of Mexico in a bright new light.

Chefs are making house-cured chorizo in Toronto, and Michelin-starred chilaquiles at Punto MX in Madrid. Last week, the Houston chef Hugo Ortega, who began his working life as a shoeshine boy in Mexico City, received the James Beard Foundation’s award for best chef in his region: a first for a Mexico-born chef.

“Everywhere, I see a new respect for Mexican culture,” said Martha Ortiz, a celebrity chef in Mexico who is opening a warmly elegant restaurant, Ella Canta, in the InterContinental London Park Lane hotel this summer. Ten years ago, when a taco in London might easily have contained canned baked beans, the idea of a Mexican restaurant in a posh hotel would have been mystifying.

“Our traditional food has always had a high value at home, and there is a lot of respect for the women who produce it,” she said. “But for people internationally to be excited about it and willing to pay for it? That is new.”

These developments are part of a movement, inside and outside Mexico, to finally vanquish the rice-and-beans stereotype and to celebrate its vast and sophisticated cuisine. Just as New Nordic cuisine brought global attention to Scandinavian rye bread, smoked fish and Arctic berries, the newly coined “Modern Mexican” shines a spotlight on ingredients like cacao, agave and cactus; pre-Hispanic varieties of tomatoes, squash and pumpkins; and the country’s all-important corn and chiles.

Outside Mexico, at places like Cosme and Empellón in New York; Hoja Santa, the Adrià brothers’ restaurant in Barcelona; Broken Spanish in Los Angeles; and Cala and Californios in San Francisco, chefs are carefully combining Mexican flavors with modern ideas and local references. At Atla, in Manhattan, the tostada with Arctic char, farmer’s cheese and capers deliberately echoes the Lower East Side’s traditional bagel with scallion cream cheese and lox."



"Claudia Prieto Piastro, a Mexican food anthropologist, said: “I don’t object to others working with our food. I do object to feeling like we’re supposed to be grateful that someone is shining a light on it.”

It should also be recognized that in parts of the country with less agriculture and fewer tourists, like Durango and Puebla, the culinary picture is not as rosy.

Most chefs, however, are happy to have Mr. Redzepi here. “Anything that helps put Mexican cuisine on the world map is good for all of us,” said Roberto Solís, the chef and owner of Nectar in Mérida, the largest city in the region, who specializes in the cooking of the Yucatán.

And, he said, even chefs in Mexico have a long way to go in learning about the food of their own nation. From north to south, Mexico covers the same distance that exists between Ireland and Greece, and Mexican cuisine is not easy to draw a line around.

“Chefs come here to have real cochinita pibil,” he said, referring to the region’s Mayan-style pit-cooked pig. “And then they tell me that they like the one in Mexico City better.”"
food  mexico  restaurants  mexicocity  df  mexicodf  costamesa  sanfrancisco  bajacalifornia  california  oaxaca  losangeles  barcelona  nyc 
may 2017 by robertogreco
Baja's Secret Miracle on Vimeo
"Mario Castro, a fisherman that decided to change the destiny of his community, narrates this wonderful story that takes us in a journey of decades, to understand how the town of Cabo Pulmo created the world's most robust marine reserve."
mexico  film  elianaalvarezmartinez  mariocastro  bajacalifornia  bajacaliforniasur  cabopulmo  fishing  oceans  ecology  srg  edg  ocatvoaburto 
august 2014 by robertogreco
Coronado Islands - Wikipedia
"The Coronado Islands (Islas Coronado or Islas Coronados) are a group of four islands off the northwest coast of the Mexican state of Baja California. Battered by the wind and waves, they are largely infertile and uninhabited except for a small military detachment and a few lighthouse keepers. The islands lie between 15 and 19 miles south of the entrance to San Diego bay, but only 8 miles from the Mexican mainland."
mexico  bajacalifornia  islands 
may 2014 by robertogreco
Bajalta California | Boom: A Journal of California
[Also posted here: http://www.kcet.org/arts/artbound/counties/san-diego/bajalta-california-boom-magazine.html ]

"The United States–Mexico borderlands are among the most misunderstood places on Earth. The communities along the line are far distant from the centers of political power in the nations’ capitals. They are staunchly independent and composed of many cultures with hybrid loyalties. Historically, since the borderline was drawn between the two countries, Texas border counties have been among the poorest regions in both countries. Those in New Mexico and Arizona were sparsely populated agricultural and mining districts; and in the more affluent west, Baja California was always more closely connected to California than to Mexico. Nowadays, border states are among the fastest-growing regions in both countries. They are places of economic dynamism, teeming contradiction, and vibrant political and cultural change.

Mutual interdependence has always been the hallmark of cross-border lives. After the 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo settled the Mexican-American War, a series of binational “twin towns” sprang up along the line, developing identities that are sufficiently distinct as to warrant the collective title of a “third nation,” snugly slotted in the space between the two host countries. At the western-most edge of this third nation is the place I call “Bajalta California.”¹

The international boundary does not divide the third nation but instead acts as a connective membrane uniting it. This way of seeing the borderlands runs counter to received wisdom, which regards the border as the last line of national defense against unfettered immigration, rapacious drug cartels, and runaway global terrorism. It is a viewpoint that substitutes continuity and coexistence in place of sovereignty and difference.

In 2002, I began traveling the entire length of the US-Mexico border, on both sides, from Tijuana/San Diego on the Pacific Ocean, to Matamoros/Brownsville on the Gulf of Mexico, a total of 4,000 miles. I voyaged in the footsteps of giants. Sixteenth-century Spanish explorers Cabeza de Vaca and Francisco Vásquez de Coronado came this way. Generals Santa Anna and Zachary Taylor fought important battles for these lands during the Mexican-American War.

What began as an impulsive journey of discovery was rapidly overtaken by events. I had the good (and bad) fortune to begin before the United States undertook the fortification of its southern boundary, and so I became an unintentional witness to the border’s closure, an experience that altered my understanding of the two countries. My experiences of the in-between third nation provide a powerful rejoinder to those who would relegate the borderlands to the status of surrogate battlefield against migrants, narcotraficantes, and terrorists.

In his 1787 biography of Fray Junípero Serra, Francisco Palóu included a map of the first administrative division of Baja and Alta California, indicating the Spanish allocation of mission territories between Franciscans to the north and the Dominicans to the south. That border was recognized on 2 February 1848, when a “Treaty of Peace, Friendship, Limits, and Settlement” was signed at Guadalupe Hidalgo, thereby terminating the Mexican-American War, which had begun in 1846 and was regarded by many (including Ulysses S. Grant) as a dishonorable action on the part of the United States. Article V of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo (as it came to be called) required the designation of a “boundary line with due precision, upon authoritative maps, and to establish upon the ground landmarks which shall show the limits of both republics.” The line would extend from the mouth of the deepest channel of the Rio Grande (known in Mexico as the Río Bravo del Norte); up river to “the town called Paso” (present-day El Paso/Ciudad Juárez); from thence overland to the Gila River, and down the channel of the Colorado River; after which it would follow the administrative division between Upper (Alta) California and Lower (Baja) California to the Pacific Ocean.²

In a multivolume history of the American West, historian Carl Wheat refers disparagingly to the post-war boundary survey as the stuff that “dime novels” are made of. To justify this characterization, he invokes yarns about political intrigue, deaths from starvation and yellow fever, struggles for survival in the desert, and the constant threat of violent attacks by Indians and filibusters. He also complained that the US field surveys seem to have been plagued by acrimony and personal vendetta: “if ever a mapping enterprise in the American West was cursed by politics, interdepartmental rivalries, and personal jealousies, it was the Mexican Boundary Survey.”³

It’s true that the letters, diaries, and official memoranda by individuals on the US team portray just about every American participant as a scoundrel or self-promoter. Yet to me the boundary survey is a story of heroism, skill, and endurance of epic proportions. It might lack the glamour of war, or the grandeur of Lewis and Clark’s opening of the lands west of the Mississippi in the early 1800s, but the survey is one of the greatest episodes in US and Mexican geopolitical history. It remains deeply etched in the everyday lives of both nations. Dime novel it most certainly is not; it is more a narrative of nation-building centered in American President James K. Polk’s vision of territorial hegemony extending as far as the Pacific Ocean, with all its momentous consequences."
california  sandiego  tijuana  mexicali  calexico  bajaltacalifornina  border  borders  mexico  us  michaeldear  bajacalifornia  2014  history 
may 2014 by robertogreco
Mexicali Art Goes Global | Imperial | Artbound | KCET
"For the past two years, the art being produced by Mexicali artists in various disciplines has obtained much deserved recognition on the East Coast and in Europe by key cultural players and institutions. Yet, arguably, their place of residence continues to be draped under a banner where contemporary border art continues to be associated by the casual enthusiast with the bygone art of Tijuana in the 2000's or the original Chicano muralists of Los Angeles. Commencing in March 2012 with a commissioned group show at Artists Space in New York and recently persisting in Washington, DC at the Corcoran College of Art + Design with a month long stint which entailed workshops, an art show featuring the work of artists all throughout the Baja border, and the collaborative production of murals, Mexicali artists have taken their DIY aesthetic eastbound with striking results. Displaying an art full of independence and ingenious creativity through scant resources, the work being produced in the desert border region has created a gratifying connection with East Coast and European audiences, particularly the German art lovers.

What follows is a recounting of four particular Eastern love affairs with Mexicali art, excursions that correspond to the spirit of freedom present on both fronts."
mexicali  mexico  art  border  borders  2014  fernandocorona  mexicalirose  bajacalifornia 
january 2014 by robertogreco
Centro de Enseñanza Técnica y Superior - Wikipedia
"El Centro de Enseñanza Técnica y Superior (CETYS) es una universidad privada mexicana comúnmente conocida como CETYS Universidad. La institución fue fundada el 17 de febrero de 1961 por el presidente municipal Fernando Macías Rendón en Mexicali, Baja California. El primer alumno registrado fue Eugenio Lagarde Camerón y las clases iniciaron el 20 de septiembre. El siguiente año se agregaron los programas académicos de ingeniería industrial, contabilidad y administración de empresas. El primer graduado fue Daniel Martín Campos en 1966. El campus de Tijuana se fundó en 1970, mientras que el de Ensenada en 1975.

La universidad es reconocida por contar con la acreditación de WASC (Western Association of Schools and Colleges), la cual es una organización que acredita a universidades estadounidenses de excelencia como lo son Stanford University, University of California - Berkeley, San Diego State University, University of Southern California, entre otras. Esta acreditación garantiza y asegura la calidad académica a la altura de cualquier universidad acreditada en EUA al evaluar todos los recursos de la institución. CETYS Universidad es la primera universidad en latinoamérica que cuenta con esta acreditación. Además, cuenta con otras acreditaciones nacionales como FIMPES que impulsan el desarrollo de la calidad educativa de esta institución.

CETYS cuenta con Bachillerato General y Bachillerato Internacional. Actualmente, CETYS es la mejor preparatoria de Tijuana y la segunda a nivel estatal de acuerdo a los resultados obtenidos en el examen de ENLACE.

Con un marcado carácter humanista, el CETYS Universidad busca, tal y como lo establece en su misión, "contribuir a la formación de personas con la capacidad moral e intelectual necesarias para participar en forma importante en el mejoramiento económico, social y cultural del país"."

[See also: http://www.pacificridge.org/podium/default.aspx?t=159680&rc=0 ]
mexico  tijuana  ensenada  education  wasc  highered  highereducation  mexicali  bajacalifornia 
november 2013 by robertogreco
Global Guide to Local: Baja - Modern Farmer
"From our Global Guide to Local travel guide, where to eat and stay in and around northern Baja, Mexico."
baja  bajacalifornia  mexico  food  local  tovisit 
october 2013 by robertogreco
In The Make | Studio visits with West Coast artists
"Founded in early 2011 by photographer Klea McKenna and writer Nikki Grattan, In the Make is a collaboration that offers an intimate look at current art practice. Through visiting artists in their studios we learn about each artist’s space, process, influences, and the behind-the-scenes elements that are often unseen in a gallery or museum setting. We document these visits with the hope of revealing both the richness and the daily realities of creative work. Our aim is to raise interest in art practice, while simultaneously debunking the romantic myth of the artist. We recognize that creative work is real work, done by real, passionate people in all sorts of different spaces. We are not art critics, but rather deeply curious observers; looking for the ways that each artist’s aesthetic pervades their environment and reveals their perspective.

Our focus on West Coast artists…"
via:ethanbodnar  mikkigrattan  kleamckenna  documentary  artists  glvo  profiles  art  westcoast  california  washingtonstate  oregon  mexico  canada  bajacalifornia  tijuana  britishcolumbia  bc 
november 2012 by robertogreco
the border - Jon Hall
"Video interview of Peggy Peattie, photographer, and Sandra Dibble, border reporter with UT, discussing the border region of Tijuana and San Diego. Sandra's observation that the border extends far into Baja, and up north of the border seems like a keen one. We often view the border as a two-dimensional object, this single barrier that separates Mexico from the United States (or perhaps more accurately, the have's from the have-nots). The reality though is that the border has not only have height and width, but also depth. The border is more a region, and it's realities and life extend south into Baja, and north well into the U.S. A good thing to know (and embrace), I think."
borders  tijuana  sandiego  mexico  us  bajacalifornia  california  photography  interviews  journalism 
november 2010 by robertogreco
Save the Day | This American Life
"Act One. Midlife Cowboy: James Spring had hit his late 30s, and found his life utterly unremarkable. He needed to do something big. So James decided to try to rescue two kids who had been kidnapped by suspected murderers, and taken to Mexico. (29 1/2 minutes)"
sandiego  bajacalifornia  mexico  thisamericanlife  heroes  heroism  storytelling 
march 2010 by robertogreco
COFAC Consejo Fronterizo de Arte y Cultura
"El Consejo Fronterizo de Arte y Cultura (COFAC) Border Council of Arts and Culture es una organización internacional de las artes, no lucrativa, basada en Tijuana, Baja California. México y Pasadena, California EE.UU., con conexiones en Los Ángeles, San Diego, Ensenada, Tecate y Mexicali.

La junta directiva de COFAC esta integrada por artistas, administradores de arte, promotores culturales, educadores, periodistas, y empresarios de las artes."
tijuana  sandiego  pasadena  art  culture  todo  tecate  mexicali  ensenada  bajacalifornia  losangeles  california  us  mexico  cofac 
march 2010 by robertogreco
Baja to Vancouver: The West Coast and Contemporary Art
"The artists in the exhibition are interested in popular forms and genres, from landscape and portraiture to vernacular signage and music videos. Their work thoughtfully reinterprets myths and reexamines histories related to West Coast cultures as diverse as the First Nations of British Columbia and the contemporary youth tribes of Los Angeles and San Francisco. The exhibition invokes patterns of immigration in the region as well as utopian visions of the "good life" and the unique topography of West Coast cities-part urban, part suburban and part wilderness. The art in B2V not only embodies a range of West Coast sensibilities, it also offers revealing portraits of the people and places on the western rim of North America and presents evidence of creative collaborations and shared aesthetic concerns among artists living and working in the region."
art  glvo  us  mexico  canada  westcoast  sandiego  vancouver  sanfrancisco  exhibitions  2004  northamerica  bajacalifornia  california  mcasd  seattle  cascadia 
september 2009 by robertogreco

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