When an email pops into your inbox inviting you to a fabulously freakish evening complete with tricks and treats around every corner, you may find your ears perk. Especially when we are still a couple of months away from Halloween. Dos Equis kicked off its two week Bazaar Noir extravaganza here in Los Angeles last Thursday. I clicked my way through to RSVP, inviting a good friend to tag along for the ride. We were privvy to a few hours of delightfully weird dishes, outrageously odd characters, live music, beer-based mixed drinks and, of course, ice cold dos Equis in every room. Take a look at what we encountered.
Each guest was presented with a Culinary Exploration passport if you will. After visiting four stations, three of them featuring the evening’s menu selections, you would be granted access into the secret room. Immediately upon walking into the door, a gypsy-esque women grabbed us by the arms and led us to a cart with antelope sopes. Without hesitation, we grabbed a sample and bit into it. The meat was tender and drenched in a mole sauce. The sope itself served as an excellent means of soaking up the juice from the meat. The sope recipe was created by Don Chow Tacos. They also came up with the fried ostrich wontons with pineapple sweet and sour sauce and the super spicy kangaroo tacos. I’ve only had ostrich as a burger, and the texture of the ground meat in the wonton reminded me of that. The meat is very lean and is similar to the flavor of beef. Can you go wrong with meat in fried dough? Surely not. The tacos were spicy, spicy, but in a great way. The only time I’ve had kangaroo was an overcooked steak in Paris. This was nothing of the sort The meat had probably been braised and shredded, then layered over corn tortillas. If you are an adventurous eater, this menu was made for you.
After three holes were poked in our explorer cards, we received the last one from the Spice Alchemist who sprinkled “crushed red fire ants” into my cocktail for a bit of heat. Later in the evening, I heard she served up chocolate covered bugs, but I am happy that I missed that part. We found another gypsy woman to take us to the secret room–the Infinity Room. We were given headphones and directed to find a spot in front of one of the slits that allowed us to look into a multi-mirrored room. Music started in the headphones, and we were given a private show from a woman dancing with huge feathers in her hands. A little something for all the voyeurs out there.
Time for everyone to call me a wuss! I don’t know if Amir would have been braver than myself, but I did not dare to touch any of the exotic creatures who apparently loved to be touched. There was a hairy tarantula, a huge snake and a gargantuan lizard. The brave folks made their way to the table and enjoyed playing with the animals. I hear the lizard was a sweet girl, but I refused to find out if that was true or not!
I managed to snap a couple of pictures from afar though. That was enough for me.
If you are the wild and crazy type who loves to live life on the edge, check out the Dos Equis Stay Thirsty Grant, which offers the lucky recipient $25,000 to make there most ambitious dream happen. Get your mind going now, so you can be ready when the submissions re-open this year. In the meantime, keep your ears and eyes peeled for information on upcoming events in your area. With L.A., San Diego and Phoenix crossed off the list, you only have a handful of more opportunities to check it out. Bazaar Noir will happen all over again July 31 in Austin, August 1 in Houston, August 3 in Miami and August 6 in Atlanta. Stay thirsty friends!
Other recipes you may enjoy...
Another Year, Another Seafood Boil
An Extravaganza for the Senses
Giving You A Taste
Holidays Are Always So Sneaky