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In 1808, Napolean invaded Spain and installed his brother José as king. With this shift in power, Mexico’s “criollos” (locally born people of Spanish ancestry) saw an opportunity to seek independence. In Spain’s stratified caste system, criollos were treated as second class citizens, which led to increasing discontent.
Two years later, Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, a Roman Catholic priest spoke El Grito de la Independencia (the Cry of Independence) in the small town of Dolores, near Guanajuato on September 16, 1810, marking the beginning of the Mexican War of Independence.
It took over ten years for Mexico to actually gain its independence from Spain, but since October 1825, the anniversary of “El Grito” is celebrated as Mexican Independence Day. It is a festive, celebratory day in Mexico with colorful decorations and spirited gatherings. The highlight is a huge gathering in Mexico City’s “Zocalo”, where the president delivers “El Grito” followed by fireworks and other revelry.
At Comal we will mark today’s holiday by serving our newest “plato fuerte”, roast turkey with three moles (negro, amarillo and coloradito). Hope to see you tonight to mark this occasion!
Photo (below): statue of Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla in front of the church in Dolores Hidalgo, Guanajuato
Adam Sanders started Copala Organics in 2010 in Hollister, CA. Its mission is to promote social justice by connecting fresh, high quality, mostly hand tended, family owned and worked, dry farm, organic produce from indigenous Oaxacan and other immigrant and first generation small farmers with markets and restaurants in the Bay Area through cooperative marketing and distribution.
Copala supplies Comal with a variety of hard to find, distinctly Oaxacan chiles, herbs and vegetables, many of which are grown by Francisco de Jesús López of Francisco’s Oaxacan Organic Farm.
On Tuesday, October 8th, Comal will welcome Adam and Francisco for a special dinner prepared by executive chef Matt Gandin showcasing some of these Oaxacan specialties: papalo, quintonil, costeño chiles, chilhuacle chiles, chiles de agua, verdolagas and Huicha squash. Chef Gandin’s dishes will be paired with wines drawn from Comal’s list, selected by wine director Corin Weihemuller.
This is the latest in Comal’s ongoing series of special dinners (previous events include Mexican Passover and winemaker dinners with Wind Gap, Donkey & Goat, and Arnot-Roberts) held in Comal’s private dining room, Abajo. All previous dinners have sold out in advance.
DATE/TIME: Tuesday, October 8th at 6:30 PM
PRICE: Tickets are $90 inclusive of food, wine and gratuity
RESERVATIONS: Space is limited – to purchase tickets, follow this link: http://www.ticketfly.com/event/367891
ADDRESS: Comal is located at 2020 Shattuck Avenue (at University Avenue) in Berkeley
WEBSITE & TELEPHONE: www.comalberkeley.com – 510.926.6300
Heirloom tomatoes pickled costeño chiles, requeson, verdolagas
2012 Rosé, Arnot-Roberts “Luchsinger Vineyard” Clear Lake
Local halibut crudo papalo, chile de agua salsa
2011 Napa Valley White, Matthiasson
White bean-quintonil soup
2011 Chardonnay, Le P’tit Paysan, “Jack’s Hill” Monterey County
Turkey and huicha squash tamal chilhuacle mole negro
2012 Cabernet Franc, Broc Cellars, Santa Barbara County
Oaxacan chocolate budin whipped crema