Los Angeles is home to the largest Latino population in the country and it is predominately Mexican. As such the city is home to some of the best Mexican food in the U.S. Now, LA will be home to the country’s first museum dedicated to celebrating Mexican food. LA Plaza Cocina, a 2,500-square-foot facility located in LA Plaza Village, is scheduled to open in early 2019 which is currently under construction in downtown Los Angeles.
The museum got its name La Plaza Cocina, to represent how the heart of the Mexican home is in the kitchen.
L.A. is getting a Mexican food museum in 2019. https://t.co/IQgQXxQl1O
— Los Angeles Times (@latimes) November 21, 2018
Food is a key part of Mexican culture and the museum’s goal is to highlight these connections through various programs and exhibitions. La Plaza Cocina has been in the works for many years and it was natural that LA would be city that would get a museum dedicated towards Mexican food.
“Mexican food is one of our greatest cultural contributions to the world,” Board member and LA Plaza founder Gloria Molina said in a statement. “The museum will become a central space where fans of the cuisine can experience, share, savor, and explore its history and what it has become.”
Chefs that have had a huge influence on Mexican cuisine will be part of the museum’s various educational programs.
— KTLA (@KTLA) November 22, 2018
Jessica Ureña, Development Manager of Special Projects at LA Plaza, says that having the museum located in LA is one of the biggest perks especially considering how many Mexican chefs are in the city.
“When you look at Los Angeles there is such a huge influence from Mexican culture and cuisine and we want to highlight that by inviting some local chefs to teach others what makes Mexican food so special,” Ureña said.
There are already a few scheduled cooking classes for next year that include a wine tasting tutorial on Valle de Guadalupe wines, a cooking session with Humberto Raygoza, owner of the Chori-Man and a class on Maya cooking from the Yucatán. Ureña says these courses are open to the public and will be one of many ways La Cocina wants to give back to the community.
“These chefs make of the cultural fabric on this great city and we want teach people along the way the value of Mexican cuisine,” Ureña said. “We know that some people may have never taken a tortilla making course or even a mole class, this is our way of sharing that.”
The museum will be a vibrant hub for Mexican cuisine and food enthusiasts.
@LAPlazaLA announced last week a museum and educational kitchen devoted entirely to the history and evolution of Mexican food called LA Plaza Cocina. It is scheduled to open in downtown L.A. in early 2019. https://t.co/aN9dYO8hQQ #mexicanfood #mexicancuisine #losangeles
— LatinoFoodie.com (@LatinoFoodie) November 20, 2018
In addition to La Plaza Cocina, a new retail space called La Tiendita will be opening as well that will offer unique Mexican foods, cooking utensils and books available for purchase. The creation of La Plaza Cocina is an expected extension of La Plaza’s celebration of Mexican and Mexican American art, history and culture, that includes culinary studies. The museum today has its own edible teaching garden and culinary program offering workshops for children in grades K-12.
While the museum is slated to open in early 2019, LA Plaza Cocina has already received an outpouring of attention from local chefs and many people online. Ureña says that the new space will finally give Mexican cuisine the stature it’s always deserved by not only celebrating food but passing it on to the next generation.
“La Plaza Cocina will be a place where we will tell and share stories about our grandparents food and hopefully inspire the next generation of chefs,” Ureña said. “For us its our mission to preserve our Mexican food and culture because in many ways food is Mexican’s greatest contributions to America.”