The King of Mexican Cuisine, Rick Bayless, won last night’s Top Chef Masters finale. But the real winner last night was Mexican food. As one of the dinner guests put it, more credit needs to be given to Mexican cuisine. Gracias!
The kid who grew up in barbecue restaurant beat French master chef, Hubert Keller, and Italian whiz Michael Chiarello. It's about time Mexican food got the credit it deserves. My time spent in Mexico was a buffet of flavors, tastes and spices I've never experienced this side of the border fence. That's because On the Border has done to Mexican food what Macaroni Grill has done to Italian food and La Madeline has done to French food. It’s lulled us into flavorless oblivion. Heavy starches, cheese, a jalapeno thrown on top…that’s not flavor! Twenty years to perfect a mole recipe–now, that’s flavor.
Thank you judges for recognizing that Mexican food is not all nachos and tacos! I’ve watched Rick Bayless on PBS and the man practically makes love to an aguacate when describing its richness, its history and flavors.
It’s a little odd that an Oklahoma City native would fall in love with la comida Mexicana but his respect for the people, the tradition and culture earns him some major points in my book. I want to book a one way to Chicago just to visit one of his restaurants–and maybe Oprah. Rick, if you read this, I'd love to dine with you some day!
Viva la gordita!
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