We had the good fortune of connecting with Andres Jimenez and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Andres, can you share a quote or affirmation with us?
“You can’t teach people how to care” -unknown I live by this quote, to me it means that someone can be taught process but if they aren’t invested and if they don’t have care for things then the process falls apart. People that care have a sense of urgency to do things correctly and they show pride in their work.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
After graduating from culinary school I had the opportunity and qualifications to work anywhere I wanted. I was lucky to have worked in the restaurants I did and learn from the chef’s I was trained by, however I wasn’t satisfied. I felt there wasn’t enough representation of mexico’s true food culture. I couldn’t find traditional dished that I had grown up with in Tijuana. there was only a few, very talented, chefs trying to raise the bar and elevate people’s perceptions of mexican cuisine. but their focus was on high end food that was out of reach for the common community. What I wanted to do was different, I wanted to capture the essence of the traditional latin kitchen and present it on a plate. I wanted to showcase traditional dishes from all over Mexico. What makes mexican food so unique is its vastness. Hundreds of regional dishes make up the fabric of mexican cuisine as we know it. I’ve come to consider myself somewhat of a stuart to this cuisine and hope to do it justice.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Top of the list is Mekong Palace in Mesa for some Dim- Sum. Can’t miss the Chicken feet and the Egg custards. Got to invite them to a night out for drinks on the patio of Valle Luna in Chandler, It’s a locals only vibe, but so worth it. I’m definitely inviting them to try Jollibee fried chicken in Gilbert and can’t miss Carniceria Los Amigos in PHX for some pupusas. to work off all that food you got to get them to hike Superstition mountain and lost dutchman trail. Maybe a small road trip up through highway 88 checking out the sights and camping up near canyon lake.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
A shout out to keepers of mexican food traditions and the storytellers of our generation who work everyday to preserve our values and history, Also a very special shout out to the migrant worker community. Nothing worth presenting on a plate or bragging about would be possible without their sacrifices and preserfeirance. I’m proud to call them ” mi gente” or “my people”. God bless them

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lacultura_latin_kitchen
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LaCulturaLatinKichen

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