Culture

Mexican Food Doesn’t Get The Respect It Deserves, Says Chef Javier Plascencia

Tijuana-born Javier Plascencia knows how to run a Mexican restaurant: His family runs 13 successful businesses in Mexico alone.

Were having a partyyyy!! #jazamango #todossantos #playalobos

A photo posted by Javier Plascencia (@javierplascencia) on


However, in 2015, when Plascencia opened Bracero in San Diego, Calif., he was surprised to find U.S. customers giving him the cold shoulder.

In a recent interview with Vice’s Javier Cabral, Plascencia says he wasn’t entirely prepared to clash with U.S. expectations of Mexican food.


A respected chef in Mexico, Plascencia specializes in modern Mexican cuisine. He uses modern techniques to create unique dishes that highlight traditional Mexican flavors.

In the U.S., Mexican food has a reputation for being quick and cheap, an expectation that carries over to modern Mexican cuisine, which is often more expensive. “We get a lot of requests for chips, salsa, and burritos,” Plascencia told Vice. “I do not serve these items. [Americans] also expect big, big, big portions and are not willing to pay $5 for a taco.” These are among the several reasons many potential patrons bristle at the style of Mexican cuisine Plascencia is trying to introduce to a U.S. audience.

Plascencia believes that many people undervalue the amount of time and work that goes into creating many Mexican dishes.

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CREDIT: javierplascencia / Instagram

“You probably won’t be able to tell by the looks of the tiny cup full of salsa on your table at Bracero, but you would not believe how much time and labor goes into making just that one alone,” Plascencia said.

Plascencia also says Mexican-Americans have a much different idea of what “traditional” Mexican flavors are:


“A lot of American-born cooks who work for me haven’t tasted the real flavors of simple, traditional, Mexican-style braised dishes or even a homemade mole, so it is really difficult to train them to accurately recreate proper Mexican flavors.” In spite of these culinary hurdles, Plascencia’s two U.S.-based restaurants have achieved critical acclaim and a loyal fan base.

Plascencia says he’s noticed that younger patrons are more willing to try modern Mexican cuisine.

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CREDIT: javierplascencia / Instagram

For someone who came to the U.S. to escape Tijuana’s kidnapping and crime epidemic, Plascencia is laser focused to broadening our perception of how we can experience Mexican food. Make sure to check out the full interview at Vice, which is packed with more insight from Plascencia.

[H/T] VICE: Why It’s So Hard to Open a Modern Mexican Restaurant in the US


READ: A List Of Latin American Cuisine That Isn’t For The Weak Stomach

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Wilmer Valderrama And Amanda Pacheco Are Engaged And He Proposed In A Special Place In San Diego

Entertainment

Wilmer Valderrama And Amanda Pacheco Are Engaged And He Proposed In A Special Place In San Diego

seaweanie / Instagram

People in the United States aren’t getting married like they used to. While fewer people are getting married, more people are getting divorced. Yet, there is always the belief that love exists. Many like to go by the scripture of “Sex and The City” in which the great Prophet Miranda Bailey once said, “Men are like cabs. When they’re available, their light goes on. They wake up one day, and they decide they’re ready to settle down, have babies, whatever. And they turn their light on. The next woman they pick up, boom, that’s the one they’ll marry. It’s not fate, it’s dumb luck.” Call it what you will because one of the hottest bachelors in Hollywood is officially off the market. Guess the right crab came along. 

Actor and activist Wilmer Valderrama proposed to his girlfriend, Amanda Pacheco after less than a year of dating.

Credit: seaweanie / Instagram

The 39-year-old (soon to be 40!) got down on one knee on a La Jolla beach in San Diego and, in an Instagram-perfect kind of way, asked the model to marry him. She said “yes,” of course. Would you expect anything else?

‘It’s just us now,'” he wrote on Instagram, “01-01-2020.” What a way to kick off the New Year, right?! She posted the same picture and caption and also a closeup shot of her new diamond ring. 

According to E! News, Valderrama and his 28-year-old finance began dating in early 2019. They were seen out on dates and “shopping sprees.”

“Wilmer always opens the door for Amanda and pays the bill,” a source told E! News last year. “He definitely wants to make sure she feels taken care of. Even if they are just doing simple things, they have a lot of fun and are always smiling.”

The actor, who’s currently on “NCIS,” was clearly smitten over this Latina beauty who’s also a certified diver. 

After further Instagram investigation, we know exactly why Valderrama proposed in La Jolla. That beach holds a very special place for her.

Credit: seaweanie / Instagram

In 2017, Pacheco shared that not only was she born in San Diego, but it’s also where her parents met, and sadly, where she remembers her late mother as well. 

“32.8190•N 117.2781•W the coordinates to my wanderer bracelet lead me to a city that will always feel like home. It’s where my mom and dad fell in love, and it’s the city I was born in, but more specifically, it leads to the exact place my mom and I shared a truly amazing day together,” she wrote. “We picnicked on the beach, ate a delicious lunch, drank some cervesas, and met up with her best friend, and we laughed a lot! Oh, and of course, we watched the sunset. To me, I could not have asked for a better day. A few years later my entire family and I gathered at this same spot after my mom passed away and shared a moment in her memory, It’s my favorite place to ‘just breathe’ as my mom would always tell me, and to let go of the sadness of not having my mom and remembering how lucky I am that she lived, loved, and laughed-a lot.”

It’s so touching that Valderrama chose this spot to bring some more wonderful memories into their lives. 

Of course, with any great news such as this, people will, of course, remember Valderrama’s longest relationship that he shared with singer Demi Lovato.

Credit: Lovatics820 / Instagram

The couple broke up in 2016, and it seemed that for a while, the two remained close friends even through Lovato’s overdose. 

“After almost 6 loving and wonderful years together, we have decided to end our relationship,” their breakup statement read in 2016. “This was an incredibly difficult decision for both of us, but we have realized more than anything that we are better as best friends.”

People are still worried about how Lovato will take the news, especially more because she recently split with her boyfriend, model Austin Wilson.

Credit: @sololovato / Twitter

“Wow, Wilmer really proposed to his girlfriend,” someone tweeted, “I’m happy for them but at the same time worried for demi. I hope she’s ok.

“demi and wilmer we’re together for 6 years and she wrote songs begging him to propose, wilmer has been with his girlfriend for a year and just popped the question. moral of the story is these n****s know what they want and it ain’t YOU,” another said. 

We do hope she takes the news in a positive way. 

READ: Things Get A Little NSFW In Maluma’s Latest Video Featuring Wilmer Valderrama

San Diego State University Student Dies After Being Hospitalized Following Frat Party

Things That Matter

San Diego State University Student Dies After Being Hospitalized Following Frat Party

Carly Bernado / GoFundMe

San Diego State University has announced that freshman student Dylan Hernandez died over the weekend. Hernandez, 19, reportedly attended a ‘fraternity event’ Wednesday night. On Thursday morning, Hernandez’s body “was found pulseless and apneic by his roommate in their dorm room,” according to San Diego’s Medical Examiner’s report. Hernandez was transported to Alvarado Hospital on Thursday and died Sunday, surrounded by family from his hometown of Jacksonville, Florida.

All 14 fraternities affiliated with San Diego State University (SDSU) were placed on suspension upon Hernandez’s hospitalization and will remain suspended until further notice. 

Dylan Hernandez is described as an “outgoing, light-hearted and goofy person who had so much love to give to everyone he met.”

Credit: Bart Hernandez / Facebook

Dylan was an outgoing, light-hearted and goofy person who had so much love to give to everyone he met,” writes GoFundMe organizer Carly Bernado. “He never failed to make everyone in the room smile and his laugh was infectious. He was a first-semester student at San Diego State University. This is being created to raise money to help to create memorials for family and friends as a way to grieve, and remember Dylan for all the lives he was able to touch.”

A GoFundMe for funeral and memorial expenses has raised nearly $29k at the time of publication.

Credit: Carly Bernado / Facebook

The fundraiser was seemingly started by Hernandez’s girlfriend, Carly Bernado. Over 800 donations have come in, many of which from SDSU classmates or alumni, seeking to support the family during this difficult time. 

“This young man, Dylan, was my daughter’s next-door neighbor in the dorm at SDSU. He died suddenly this past week,” Maria Bernal Toretta shared on Facebook. “He was a nice, respectable young man who was helpful and kind to my daughter. Please pray for him and for his family; they will be needing many prayers. If you feel inclined to donate to the go fund me account, the link is below. I am truly sorry for this family’s loss.” 

San Diego State’s University Police Department is currently investigating the cause of death.

Credit: Carly Bernado / GoFundMe

“UPD is investigating the circumstances surrounding the incident,” University Police said in a statement. “Although the investigation is preliminary, UPD is taking this matter very seriously. As this is an ongoing investigation, UPD cannot provide additional details at this time.” The medical examiner’s office could invite San Diego Police to investigate the case if it rules Hernandez’s death a homicide.

Hernandez reportedly fell off his bunk bed after returning home from a frat party.

Credit: Julia Hernandez / Facebook

The following morning, Hernandez’s roommate returned to find him unconscious and without a pulse, after suffering a head injury from his fall. His roommate called 911 at 8:49 a.m. Thursday to the sixth floor of Tenochca residence hall. Hernandez was in the midst of pledging to Phi Gamma Delta, one of the fourteen fraternities associated with the Interfraternity Council (IFC). Six of those fraternities were already under suspension and an additional four were under investigation.  SDSU President Adela de la Torre suspended all fourteen IFC fraternities effective Friday, November 8. 

The following day, de la Torre emailed the entire student body urging students with any information to come forward, after university police “uncovered information which alleges that a fraternity was involved in possible misconduct.” Several students told CBS News that Hernadez “over partied,” alluding to overconsumption of alcohol. Hernandez, 19, was below the legal drinking age. Many are demanding an alcohol ban on fraternity property, referring to the injuries and deaths caused by “hazing.”

SDSU President Adela de la Torre said the university will continue offering mental health support to those who are affected.

Credit: Carly Bernado / Facebook

In a statement, De La Torre addressed the SDSU community to say, “It is with a heavy heart that I am writing to say that Dylan Hernandez, the student who was hospitalized last week, has passed away. His family gave their goodbyes late Sunday night.” She also acknowledged that Hernandez’s impact on the community was felt and that therapists with Counseling and Psychological Services will continue offering their resources for students, faculty, and staff.

Our hearts go out to the Hernandez family during this difficult time.

Credit: Sylvie Laporte Hernandez / Facebook

Dylan Hernandez, 19, is survived by his sisters, Julia and Kayla Hernandez, and his parents, Sylvie Laporte Hernandez and Bart Hernandez. “Love you forever buddy,” his sister Julia commemorated on a social media post.

READ: Kelly Ripa Tried To Make A Joke About Her Son Experiencing Extreme Poverty After College But Not A Lot Of People Laughed