Latin cuisine is heating up the South in some unexpected places.
Louisville chef Anthony Lamas is hosting the city’s first-ever Latin all-star dinner at his top-rated restaurant, Seviche, on Monday, January 30 at 6:30 p.m. Named by USA Today as one of the best places to eat in the city, Chef Lamas is bringing in two other Louisville-based Latin chefs, Bruce Ucán and Fernando Martinez, to serve an exclusive seven-course meal at his restaurant. Proceeds from the event will go to Partners in Health, a global health organization committee to improving the health of poor and marginalized people.
For over a decade, Chef Lamas has blended traditional Southern dishes with Mexican cuisine to create authentic dishes that still appease the Southern palate. His dishes, including chorizo-and-collard-greens empanadas and shrimp and grits with smoked chipotles, is what he says gets people really excited because they see the ingredients they recognize transformed by new flavors.
“I want to show people that we have a little something for everyone, and it kind of introduces them to something new,” he said in an interview with Southern Living. “It’s fun to introduce Americans to new things. Then, it’s actually really fun to introduce the Latinos that come into my restaurant to new interpretations of the flavors they know.”
The night will include passed hors d’oeuvres such as mini frita de langosta with lobster frita, shallot and country ham, and a yuca fritter served with an eggplant goat cheese pureé. Dishes on the dinner and dessert menus will consist of a braised lamb tamale, manioc-crusted sea scallops, and a chocolate roll with chocolate mousse dusted with chile-lime. “Latino food deserves its place next to Italian and French [food], and it can be refined. It can be sexy and sophisticated,” Chef Lamas said. “It’s right up there with French and Italian food as far as I’m concerned.”
Louisville-based chefs Bruce Ucán, who owns the Mayan Café, and Fernando Martinez, who opened up Guaca Mole in 2012, are also among the city’s top-rated Latino chefs. “We all come from a different heritage and we’re all bringing our food. It’s a way for us to show what we’re proud of,” said Chef Lamas, who hand-picked these talented chefs to bring together a menu that would represent different aspects of Latin cuisine. “I told them, let’s do something that we can be proud of. We are Latinos here in Louisville and successful.”
Partners in Health brings the benefits of modern medical science to people the most in need and serve as an antidote to despair, as stated in their mission statement. They serve countries including Haiti, Russia, and a place close to Chef Lamas’ heart, Mexico. “I decided this would be good ways to give back to our culture, and the people here that support us,” he told Southern Living.
This event will include a seven-course meal with passed hors d’oeuvres, champagne, wine pairings, and a chef meet and greet. Tickets are all-inclusive at $225 per person. “It’s a way to say thank you to Louisville for accepting us and supporting our restaurants and allowing us to do what we do, and also give back to our culture,” said Chef Lamas.
For more information and ticket information, visit www.sevicherestaurant.com.