One of our favorite annual events is East LA Meets Napa, an elegant celebration of food and wine. The fundraiser returns on Friday, July 15th to benefit AltaMed Health Services, a community organization that provides “…access to health care, senior services, teen mentoring, HIV care and more to underserved families in Los Angeles and Orange Counties.” This year the event will be held at the beautiful California Plaza instead of its former locale at Union Station. The Plaza is a larger venue, since the event continues to grow, and still sells out every year. The Plaza also has a small man-made lake, so you will have to watch your wine consumption or possibly end up soaked.
The theme this year is “World Tour,” meaning restaurants and wineries from around the world will cook and pour along with the usual local “Latino-centric” restaurants and Latino-owned wineries from Napa. Local participants include chefs like Katsuji Tanabe of MexiKosher, James Beard award-winning Socorro Herrera of Yuca’s, and Gilberto Cetina of Chichen Itza. Joining them will be acclaimed international chefs Ingrid Hoffmann of Colombia, Puerto Rican chef and sommelier Doreen Colondres. Other returning local favorites including Casa Oaxaca, Rocio’s Mexican Kitchen, and Portos Bakery & Cafe will be providing delicacies (like Porto’s guava pastries!).
The dancefloor is always full as the party extends into the night. Music will be provided this year by Grammy award-winning music director Jose Rizo and his 15-piece ensemble, Jazz on the Latin Side All Stars, as well as Mexican-American conguero Poncho Sanchez. General admission tickets ($225) can be purchased online through the event website.