Nopalito Podcast with Eddie Dick
This podcast marks the 9th in our series. Today, for the first time, we explore the cuisine of Nopalito with Chef Eddie Dick. Last week, we posted a column on our blog called "The Nopa Paradox". The basic premise of the article explored the quandary of sibling restaurants with very different identities. There are musings on how Nopa, the popular elder sibling, and the cuisine of Nopalito, have perhaps been a hindrance to a complete understanding of the Nopalito experience.
Last Friday, we sat down with Eddie to discuss these matters. Eddie, a former Sous Chef at Nopa, has been with Nopalito for the past 5 months. And while Chefs Gonzalo Guzman and Jose Ramos were also once chefs in the Nopa kitchen, (in fact, from the onset) the food of Nopalito is distinctly theirs. It's been over three years and two restaurants since the days of Ramos and Gonzalezs' epic family meals that spawned those two restaurants. So it seemed that Eddie, with fresh eyes, would be interesting to talk to about Nopalito.
And Eddie is a great talker. He's plainspoken in a way that tips off his Kansas roots. He's articulate, thoughtful and genuinely an interesting guy. Over the course of 40 minutes, we covered his childhood and how an absence of restaurants actually helped his sensibilities on food ("when I was 7 years old I had my own garden.. everyone knew the worst grocery store had the worst vegetables"), his 3-year stint in Japan, and how the Nopalito empanada, humble as it may seem, can be a 3-day affair.
The best case scenario for food lovers is to listen to Eddie carry on about food. He reminds (or perhaps informs) us that quesadillas at Nopalito are done to order. Once a ticket comes in, someone begins to roll out the masa. He also teaches us about the corn fungus/delicacy, which can be found in the aforementioned quesadilla with squash.
His description of salsa oozing from the empanada and his talk of fried bamboo shoots, is so graphic it is arresting-an incredible account of enjoying food from the perspective of someone who knows it, loves it and can talk about it. Whether or not you've experienced Nopalito, this podcast will be an enlightenment. You will be better positioned to enjoy our food and inspired to find enjoyment in your own. We hope you enjoy the podcast.
Posted September 4, 2012 • Filed under Podcast
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