It’s about time Gastón! Peruvian celebuchef Gastón Acurio will open a branch of his La Mar Cebicheria in New York sometime between March and May of 2011, as reported by San Francisco Weekly and later confirmed by Peruvian web portal Terra. The 8,000 square foot location is already chosen, on Madison Avenue and 27th street, near Madison Square Park.
I’ve only recently discovered the brilliant adjoined stores Puro Chile and Puro Wine in New York’s Soho. While Puro Wine focuses on selling premium Chilean wines, Puro Chile sells an array of high quality Chilean products – olive oils, wool sweaters, photo books, and handicrafts. Combined they are a powerful tool for promotion. Last night they held “A Taste of Chile,” which was put on by Wines of Chile. A number of wines, served by bartenders in miner outfits, were available from four different regions: the Casablanca Valley, Elqui & Limari Valleys, Maipo Valley, and Colchagua Valley. Their were several wines I had yet to try so I pleased to have the opportunity for so much Chile in one place.
Sometimes what makes a meal is the reward after the effort it takes to get there. I didn’t take the long train ride but braved the slow moving traffic (on two consecutive days) to Far Rockaway Beach in car without A/C during 100 degree weather en route to Long Beach. I had heard about Rockaway Taco after reading numerous write ups in the New York Times, New York Magazine, TimeOut New York, Edible Queens, and every other regional magazine and have long wanted to go. To get to the summer only operation I have to cross Brooklyn from one end (my house in Greenpoint) to the other until I pop out near JFK airport. On arrival, after an hour of stoplights and slow moving traffic through not the prettiest part of town, I cross a causeway over a wide expanse of water. Life slows down. It’s like entering a tunnel into Oz.
I love tacos. Some might even say I’m obsessed with tacos. You could even go as far as calling me taco loco. I didn’t really even have a real taco until I was in my early 20’s. I grew up with Americanized Mexican food like Taco Bell and Chichi’s in Ohio and a good taco just didn’t exist. When I began a life of travel I began frequenting food stalls whenever I could and it opened my eyes to the vastness of the taco landscape. Now that I’m settled in Brooklyn, I make frequent trips to the taqueria. I’ve eaten a lot of bad tacos in Brooklyn, though the majority are as good as anything I have found in Mexico. Here are my ten favorite tacos in Brooklyn: