For centuries, the neighboring countries of Peru and Chile have been embroiled in a debate over which is the true birthplace of pisco. Both sides, claiming the spirit as their own, have adopted the frothy pisco sour cocktail as the national drink. And, while each country imports pisco produced across the border, neither allows it to be labeled pisco. What’s all the fuss about? Like French cognac, pisco is a brandy distilled from wine (which has been produced in South America since the Spanish arrived there in the 16th century). Continue reading
by Steven Doyle
Inca’s Cafe is located in Carrollton just off George Bush and Josey, in the same strip center as the Target which you will find on the corner. What looks to be very ordinary, and possibly even mundane from the outside, turns out to be a whimsical ride through Machu Picchu in Peru. Inca’s serves up some pretty terrific Peruvian dishes, often with a side of live music to keep with the beat of the theme.
Owned by Candy Vera, who purchased the restaurant from her mother. “In 2003 my mother started the restaurant using all of our family recipes. My grandmother’s, and further back” said Vera. Candy Vera was working for Merrill Lynch at the time as a broker, and at one point invested in the restaurant to help take it to another level. She eventually bought her mother out, and now runs the restaurant by herself. She talks of expansion, catering (which she does now to a happy list of clientele) and even going back to school for some culinary lessons to help elevate those old family recipes. Not that she needs to, because what we found was thoroughly delicious, and reminiscent of my travels to Peru. Continue reading
by Steven Doyle
If you have been out on the town in recent weeks you may have noticed an escalation of a particular spirit on the cocktail menus. Pisco is a colorless or amber toned grape brandy made in Peru since the 16th century by Spanish settlers. Since that time pisco has been distilled using traditional methods, and Pisco Porton is one of the finer examples of the product. The Pisco Porton master distiller, Johnny Schuler is in the DFW area all week. Schuler resides in Lima, Peru where he owns restaurants and has an entertaining television program that features Pisco Porton. Continue reading
by Steven Doyle
How would you like to spend a week with two beautiful and talented celebrity chefs, Tiffany Derry and Uno Imminavong in the South America, wining and dining through Peru? You now have that opportunity. Peruvian restaurateur and master distiller at Pisco Porton and television sensation, Johnny Schuler will join you through Peru which is known for their immense variety and quality of its foo. Lima has been declared the Gastronomic Capital of Latin America. The gastronomic boom Peru is experiencing has led to an explosion of more successful and innovative restaurants than ever before. Lima is also where the cocktail, Pisco Sour, originated.
On this amazing tour, you will not only visit the top restaurants in the city, but also have classes in creating our own Pisco Sour cocktails with the topmost authority on this popular spirit, Johnny Schuler.
This sounds like a culinary vacation of a lifetime. For more information, or to book your trip visit the Tripboutiq website. Check out the itinerary: Continue reading
by Steven Doyle photos by Robert Bostick
Last week on craveRADIO we had chef Kent Rathbun in the studio to talk about his various restaurants including his flagship Abacus, Jasper’s and Rathbun’s Blue Plate which is located in Preston Center. The chef said he is currently looking for real estate to place another Jasper’s in North Dallas, which would certainly make a welcome addition to any neighborhood.
We also got a behind the scenes look at Iron Chef, and Rathbun discussed his victory over Bobby Flay. He mentioned that there may be a Rathbun on an upcoming Chopped on the Food Network (go, Kevin!)
We hope to have Kent back in the studio very soon as he had to dash off to a cooking class at Abacus. He actually slipped out in the middle of his Dirty Dozen class to pop by for this visit, and we certainly thank him for that. Continue reading
by Steven Doyle
In the continuing saga in search for the perfect Pisco Porton cocktail in Dallas we came up with another draw this week. As we take down sections of the city by storm our intrepid group set its goggles on the Central Expressway corridor visiting some powerful cocktail dens, including the very new Smyth located just off Knox on Travis.
To catch you up, we have been invited as an emissary of libations by Pisco Porton to sample a variety of cocktails using their spirit. Pisco is made with tradition in Peru using a variety of grapes to develop a spirit as the Spanish settlers did in the 16th century. Continue reading