Chipotle Finally Gets Hispanic Authors for their Stories-on-a-Cup Series...and None are Mexican

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Chipotle
No nopales yet

Okay, haters: go for it. Go on and rant that the anger that Chicano authors and I have for Chipotle after they announced the latest batch of authors for their "Cultivating Thought" series is laughable. That we should rejoice that the series included Hispanic authors this time, from Brazilian self-empowerment guru Paulo Coelho to Dominican writer Julia Alvarez to Spaniard Carlos Ruíz Zafón. That we should thank Chipotle for including diverse voices after the travesty of last time, shut up, and get on with our lives. Actually, that we should get lives, period, and go bend a taco or something.

But the fact remains: when curating author Jonathan Safran Foer had another chance to expose hipster America to Chicano or Mexican authors, he chose not to. And the question must be asked: why?


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VIDEO: ¡Ask a Mexican! on Why Mexicans Should Learn to Love Hipsters

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From the Lalo Alcaraz Tacos Series...
Lalo nails it as always...

Though the issue of gentrification rears its happy head in various manifestations, the most obvious front is food, battlefield for $17 burritos, "street" tacos and the ever-popular mezcal. I mention most of this in my latest ¡Ask a Mexican! video, which ridicules hipsters but nevertheless urges tolerance for their columbusing ways...HA!


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In Defense of Writing About Street Vendors--And Non-Mexicans Writing About Them

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From Sigmund Krausz's 1896 Street Types of Great American Cities
The OG tamalero, now and forever

SO...there was a bit of controversy in the food world last week after an Eater LA critic reviewed a elotero in Lincoln Heights. Instead of focusing on the actual execution of the article, though, nearly all the criticism focused on the very act of the article--that is, on Eater's reporter even doing the piece in the first place. Oh, how the accusations flew--that writer Lucas Peterson was columbusing, that he was exposing the poor elotero to retribution from the health department (or worse), that Peterson was a dumb hipster gabacho who was adding to the gentrification of LA's Eastside by doing his story.

Oh, it got nasty. And critics--some in the foodie world, others in Chicano yaktivist circles--got it all wrong.


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How Buffalo Bill Opened New York's First-Ever Mexican Restaurant--And Invented Celebrity Mexican Food

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Buffalo Bill, won't you come out tonight...
Among the many crazy facts I discovered for my 2012 book, Taco USA: How Mexican Food Conquered America, none were crazier than the discovery of Buffalo Bill getting into the Mexican-restaurant game. It happened only once, in 1886 at Madison Square Garden as part of his Wild West Show, but still: what the hell was the American West's most famous showman doing offering Mexican food in the 1880s, a time where virtually no one in los Estados Unidos outside of the American Southwest knew what a tortilla was?

That question led me last week to Denver, to an amazing evening of lectures and food hosted by Kevin Grossi of Lola Mexican Fish House. The young chef set out to modernize the dishes that Buffalo Bill offered in his pop-up, not just because Grossi cooks Mexican food and is a fan of Buffalo Bill, but also because the building that Lola occupies used to be a mortuary in which Bill's body was kept--CRAZY!!!

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This is What a Burrito Looks Like in Mississippi

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Photo by The Mexican
YIKES!

I'm not the kind of writer who'll craft whole blog posts about a single Instagram picture, but the above photo--not the greatest, I admit--led to so much outrage on my IG page that I felt I had to come to the poor thing's defense.

So, yes: this is how a burrito looks like in Mississippi. And not just anywhere in Mississippi, but in Corinth, at the extreme northeast section of the state, just outside Tennessee and Alabama and on what was formerly known as the Robert E. Lee Highway but is now federally designated as U.S. Route 72--but which Corinth still calls the Lee Highway. YIKES!


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Synthetic Marijuana Found in Rosca de Reyes Bread That Poisoned Dozens: UPDATE

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Wikimedia Commons
A type of rosca de reyes--but not the poisoned one in question


SECOND UPDATE, JAN. 16, 7:17 A.M.: A Santa Police Department investigation determined that the drug used in a rosca de reyes cake that poisoned at least 40 people across Orange County was synthetic pot. So you've heard of pot brownies--now pot pan dulce?

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VIDEO: ¡Ask a Mexican! on Why Politicians Hate Taco Trucks

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Photo by The Mexican
Alebrije's, the finest lonchera in the land

The proposal by the SanTana City Council to further regulate food trucks, both of the grocer and taco variety, has me pretty pissed--so much so that I decided to devote my weekly ¡Ask a Mexican! video to the issue. Just a warning to any restauranteur who has complained to those clowns about loncheras: if I find out you did that, I WILL expose ustedes as the pendejo wimps you are.


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First-Ever Taco Bell Location May Be Demolished in Downey--DAMNIT!

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The oldie-but-goodie returns!

Preservationists across Southern California are upset over plans to demolish a building in Downey that was the site of the original Taco Bell. The tiny ol' Downey Patriot broke the news, adding that saving the building would be appropriate given the city also hosts the world's oldest continuously operating McDonald's.

I'm actually surprised the multi-billion dollar Bell hasn't bought up this building and turned it into a museum, ala the original Mickey D's in San Bernardino (although that spot is as sad a memorial as you'll ever find). But those preservationists should really be paying attention to San Bernardino and its many Taco Bell treasures.


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Chipotle to Offer FREE Burritos and Tacos--Here's How to Get Them!

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Chipotle's website
Start lining up!

Regular readers know I'm not the biggest fan of Chipotle, both for its corporate history and its flavor. So this post goes out to my good pal, the mysterious Ben Dayhoe of SanTana blogging fame: Chipotle is giving away burritos and tacos FOR FREE on January 26. And the only catch is as tasty a catch as you can ever imagine--if Chipotle is your thing, that is.


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Santa Ana City Council Wants to Regulate Food Trucks--Again ('Cause They're Pendejos)

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Photo by The Mexican
Dispatch from the best lonchera in OC...

Over the holiday break, the Voice of OC wrote a telling piece about how SanTana councilmembers want to do what they do best: fuck up a good thing.

Their latest self-manufactured controversy involves food trucks, both of the market and lonchera variety, and how they need to get regulated because...why, exactly?


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