If your idea of Latin American cuisine is tacos and a frosty Corona, you're missing out, amigo. From Mexico to Tierra del Fuego, Latin America offers up a stunning array of flavors and culinary traditions -- and all were on display recently at the Gourmet Latino Festival, a five-day series of events and tastings in New York City. There was Argentine barbecue, Mexican mole, and cocktails made with Peruvian Pisco, Mexican tequila and Brazilian Cachaca.
Being a wine lover, I was intrigued by an event that promised to pair Latin America specialties with wines from surprising regions like Brazil, Uruguay and Mexico. it was held at at Palo Santo, a Latino restaurant in Brooklyn's Park Slope neighborhood, where chef-owner Jacques Gautier serves up unusual but authentic pan-Latin cuisine, often using ingredients from his rooftop garden.
"I like to showcase dishes I've come across in my travels but that are less well known," explained Gautier. The same could be said for the wine served that evening.