Monday, June 28, 2010

Alta Med's Fundraiser: East LA Meets Napa 2010-Wine, Dine, and Conga Line.

Picking up right where we left off last year, the best food and wine event in Los Angeles approaches. This isn't a sip and swirl kind of event. When the food is gone and the wine bottles are empty, it's time to dance the salsa, merengue, the cumbia. This is a Latin-American event, but the crowd is pure Los Angeles. This is the food Angelinos have grown-up with, Latino cuisine, from the East LA flavors of El Tepeyec, the haute fonda cuisine of La Casita, to the modern Latin stylings of Rivera. The latin wine makers and vineyard owners have an idea what to pair with this food. East LA Meets Napa is the only wine event in the US that qualifies as a rumba!

Alta Med has delivered quality care to the underserved communities of Southern California for more than 40 years! The proceeds of this event go towards helping those without proper health care, which is even more important during these tough economic times. Not only will you be attending the best party in town, you'll be indulging for a worthy cause. For more information on Alta Med go to their website.

I was invited by Castulo de la Rocha, President and CEO of Alta Med, pictured second from the right, to attend a preview of the 2010 East LA Meets Napa restaurants and wineries.

The event was held at Phlight restaurant in Whittier, one of my favorite bites at the 2009 event.

Here are the featured vintners for the 2010 East LA Meets Napa:
Alex Sotelo Cellars, Black Coyote Chateau, Bodegas San Raphael, Cejas Vineyards(my fave from last year),Chateau de Vie,El Centauro Del Norte,Elements of Sonoma,Encanto Vineyards,Fria Family Vineyard,Gustavo Thrace Wines,L Lohr,Karl Lawrence Cellars,Madrigal Vineyards,Maritas Vineyards,Mi Sueno,Renteria Wines,Riverbend Cellars,Robledo Vineyards,San ANtonio Winery,Sequoia Grove Vineyards,V. Sattui Winery, and Veramonte.And, I'm very proud to announce the participation of Adobe Guadalupe,Cavas Valmar, L.A. Cetto, and the cowboy wine maker J.C. Bravo from the Valle de Guadalupe. On a recent trip to Mexico's premier wine country I recruited these wineries to be a part of East LA Meets Napa.

Some of the East LA spectrum of Latino cuisine:
Birrieria Chalio,Cacao Mexicatessen,Cobras & Matadors,Cook’s Tortas, El Tepeyac Cafe, Esquela, Homegirl Café, La Casita Mexicana, La Parrilla Restaurant
La Serenata de Garibaldi,Phlight Restaurant,Porto’s Bakery & Café,Rivera Restaurant,Setá,Taco’s Baja,Tamayo Restaurant,Teresitas,Tila’s Kitchen

Three chefs that will be at the event gave us a glimpse of what you are in store for at the 2010 East LA Meets Napa. First up was Hugo Molina of Seta in Whittier, just around the corner from Phlight.

Seta is not Latin cuisine exactly, but serves food in a Latin American steakhouse aesthetic. Hugo is a Guatemalan chef who studied in Mexico among other places, but his emphasis is on Italian cooking.

The pan seared, bacon-wrapped diver scallops with a creamy mushroom risotto and bits of blood oranges was a texture and flavor "Dream Team." This was my favorite dish of the tasting.

Chef Molina also served an interesting cool,and mildly tart Golden gazpacho with poached shrimp and Israeli couscous. Going to make it out to Seta,and soon.

Daniel Salcido did an excellent job as home chef at the East LA Meet Napa preview.

He started with a Mexican cheese stuffed, tempura-battered squash blossom, atop a consume of hibiscus and orange blossom.This was a superb first bite of our tasting.

Daniel's "torito", a crab and asparagus stuffed chile guero in a chipotle cream sauce. This member of the chile relleno family is a prized indulgence of mine, and Phlight's interpretation was very nice.

Steven Arroyo, the restauranteur formerly of Church and State, and current owner of Cobras and Matadors and Potato Chips spilled the beans on his new venture, Esquela.

Steve would plans to explore timless premise of the taco, that "everything tastes better with a tortilla wrapped around it". The first taco off the line in the yet to be opened Esquela was a pork chop taco. At East LA Meets Napa you can get a sneak preview of his new restaurant.

Come and join the fanciest rumba(party)in LA. Don't forget to bring your dancing shoes!

East LA Meets Napa
Friday, July 9, 2010
6:00pm – 9:00pm
Union Station
800 Alameda Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012

Individual Tickets
$125 Pre-sale before June 25
$150 After June 25

For more information call 323-622-2405 today!

Purchase your tickets today

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